Collaboration is hard in itself.
Every time your team grows, the team members start working in silos. This means two teams are working on the same project, but neither of them is aware of what the other is doing. They don’t communicate effectively with each other – and productivity suffers. Organizations are finding it increasingly challenging to maintain team collaboration across the workplace.
In a study, it was found that collaborative teams are 5X higher-performing because they feel motivated towards a common goal. And team collaboration is no easy feat.
So, what are the keys to make team collaboration more persuasive for your company?
What is Team Collaboration in the Workplace?
Team collaboration is when two or more team members (with different expertise, perspectives, and ideas) work together towards a common goal to solve a common problem. Collaboration is the cog in the engine of team performance. Bringing effective team collaboration will make sure the teams have clarity on the things they are working on. Together they will lead to faster innovation.
Team collaboration is all about cultivating a teamwork-focused environment. It is a project management plan that features teamwork, innovative thinking, creativity, and completing projects quickly and easily. Whereas, a lack of team collaboration simply shows that a company is not maximizing its potential.
Don’t believe it? Check out these statistics:
- 86% of polled executives and employees criticize no collaboration for project failure and team problems.
- 54% of employees say a strong sense of community kept them at a company longer than what was in their best interest.
- 99.1% of employees prefer an open, honest, and collaborative working environment.
- Companies and organizations that communicate effectively are 4.5x more likely to retain the best employees.
Now that you have understood what collaboration is, it’s time to know how to build collaboration in your workplace that can benefit from team collaboration to achieve a common goal.
How to Improve Team Collaboration in the Workplace
1. Set up a Workflow
Having a workflow can make work so much easier, whereas, no workflow makes things more difficult than they should be and will make you feel out of the loop and become unproductive. Setting up a workflow will help members work together without trampling each others’ toes.
At the core of every successful collaborative team is making a clearly defined workflow that provides a simplified system of assigning specific tasks, adding deadlines, and having communication. This makes collaboration in the team a lot less of a pain.
If you can set up a workflow that fits everyone, it can do wonders, like:
- Keep everyone on the same page
- Prevent miscommunication
- Increase accountability
- Prevent information overload
- Allow everyone to focus on what they do best
- Streamline things to be done regularly
2. Highlight Individuals’ Strengths
Research by OfficeTeam shows that 66% of employees would quit their jobs if they felt unappreciated. And among Millennials, this number jumps to 76%. If a leader or an organization doesn’t value an employee, if they are not able to use their unique skill sets, they start to look elsewhere. And a successful team grows only when each team member can bring their own set of skills to the table.
Make sure you build on each individuals’ strengths and highlight them in collaborative work culture. If you’re growing your team, it is important to focus on the specific strengths of each person and how it fits in the required role and responsibilities. You can build on this by getting everyone to take a skill test and share the results among the group.
3. Invest in Collaboration Tools
80% of businesses use social collaboration tools to ensure long-term collaboration among the team. Building a truly productive digital workspace is the most practical thing you can do today for collaboration. Slack has been a go-to choice for all sorts of teams and does everything you would want to organize team communication: add tags to each employee, send documents, share files, and set up the topics.
But Slack’s cumbersomeness and the expensive price are pushing its users to look for Slack alternatives—you are free to use the favorite tools like ProofHub, Fuze, Fleep, etc.
Bonus tools able to make your team collaboration effective:
- Simple, Smart CRM: Nimble
- Project Management: ProofHub
- Document Collaboration: Google Drive
- File-Sharing: Dropbox
- Communication: Slack
- Intranet: Samepage
- Calendar-Sharing: Google Calendar
New trends in work have promoted host-desking where employees share a desk and are not to be strapped to a desk for long 8 hours. It’s no more like a school where you sit next to the same person for the whole day or days.
Hot-desking is a trend where the team members will not have compulsory assigned seating to have a chance to interact with different teams (they wouldn’t normally talk) and build networks. It leads to an environment that encourages creativity. This also helps to break down ‘silos’, enable teams to become more creative and lead to better team ethic.
Hot-desking is part of modern workplace collaboration where you can offer a variety of workspaces – couches, shared-desks, work outside the office in a group – and bring more flexibility.
5. Help Team Members Build Bonds
One of the best things to establish a connection is to focus on building strong relationships among them. Give them space to communicate openly and design a personal experience for them to build a natural bond. According to research: 75% of people report having a best friend at work motivates them to take on new challenges and initiatives.
Take them for happy hours after work, regular offsite meetings, specific opportunities for learning, attend events together, day trips with each other, and many more activities that can help employees build a bond.
6. Strengthen Your Company Culture
Company culture nearly affects every aspect of the workplace. According to research by Deloitte, 94% of executives and 88% of employees believe a well-defined corporate culture is important to a business’ success. Effective collaboration is rooted in a sense of community and care in any team, which is a must for success and connection.
A culture that truly encourages collaboration is one where the entire company is one the same page and working together. Put structure, rules, and tools in place to strengthen company culture that promotes collaboration. Remove silos and allow open communication, to create a positive culture around innovation and creativity.
Make Collaboration a Priority
When you build an atmosphere that is collaborative, where your employees feel safe and valued, they become more:
So, go on! Improving collaboration is a continuous process. It’s important to build a collaborative team. By reading this article, now you know collaboration is the one ingredient that your organization must have to fall into place for greater success. So get to work to make your workplace collaborative. There may be challenges along the way but the end result will be amazing over the long run. Good luck!