Why Collaboration Fails and What To Do About It

According to Wikipedia collaboration is the process of two or more people or organizations working together to complete a task or achieve a goal. It’s aim is to increase the success of the team by finding creative ways to solve problems and eliminate potential road blocks. A good idea becomes a better idea when we allow everyone on the team to be involved in the decision making process. Collaboration fails when we fail to allow others to have input. Collaboration fails because we throw people together , call them a team, and expect them to perform like one.

Worth Remembering … “It is not the individual but the team that is the instrument of sustained and enduring success in management.” – Anthony Jay

Like all good teams, it starts at the selection process. Some people already posses the interpersonal skills to be effective team players. When hiring team members, in addition to their technical skills required to fill the position, ensure that you hire people who like working with people. Soft-skills, the ability to communicate and interact more effectively with others, are more important then technical ability.

A recipe for building collaborative teams

  • There are a number of ways to accomplish the same thing. It doesn’t have to be just your way. Solicit everyone’s input and decide on the best plan of action regardless of who came up with the idea.
  • Resist the urge to micro-manage. Let everyone of the team know what needs to be done and then get out of their way and let them do it.
  • Let them know how their part contributes to the success of the whole. If the team wins – everyone wins. If one person on the team fails – the team fails.
  • Hold everyone accountable for the results. I mean everyone – including you.
  • Keep lines of communication open. Let everyone know how things are going – good or bad.
  • Be fair and consistent. Rules are for everyone – including you and your super stars.
  • Consider rotating positions so everyone on the team knows how to do everyone’s job. Cross-training can increase productivity, reduce boredom and eliminate turn over.

Worth Remembering … “Teams are now the primary force of organizations. They are worth cultivating at their core. Their core is the mind of each team member. ” – Nancy Kline

Be sure to monitor individual performance so that “social loafers” won’t go about un-detected. Tune into the unofficial grapevine so you know what’s really going on. Be aware of group think and make sure everyone on the team has an opportunity to express their opinion. Together everyone does achieve more. Teams create a synergy that results in a level of performance far greater then it’s individual parts.

Copyright (c) 2020. Brian Smith – Power Link Dynamics. Not to be reproduced without permission. To find out more about Brian and what he can do for you and your organization visit: https://briansmithpld.com