How to Enhance Collaboration Within Your Team
Effective collaboration isn’t always as easy as some make it out to be. There are a variety of factors that go into fostering an open, engaged and accountable environment within the office that encourages the sharing of information and diverse opinions.
Below are a few ways to enhance collaboration within your team and promote a stronger bond with teammates during trying projects.
The most obvious way to foster collaboration is by being more open with your team in the workplace. Whether you are an employee or part of management, promoting openness when it comes to questions or concerns will allow others to feel comfortable discussing certain topics during team meetings as well as reaching out whenever necessary.
Without this level of comfort and support, employees won’t speak up during trying times, whether it be about work or personal issues, and it will end up affecting the efficiency of the team as a whole. As a manager, encourage weekly meetings to discuss any pressing issues without reservation or judgement in order to create a welcoming environment for collaboration.
Have The Right Tools
Despite having the desire to collaborate effectively with your team, it is made that much harder if the right tools aren’t being used to facilitate smooth communication. This pressure usually rests on software that is designed to help teams in the same office, in other offices, or employees who work remotely stay in contact easily throughout the day in order to resolve any issues whenever they arise.
Email is sufficient to a certain extent, but telecommunication via tools like Skype or Google Hangouts is much more capable to connecting team members quickly and face to face. When it comes to sharing and storing pertinent data for review during arduous project, virtual data rooms are the best option seeing as they provide document security as well as features that assist in smooth collaboration.
As a manager you should be pushing the notion of reliability with your employees when it comes to collaboration. If you don’t make it clear that you expect them to remain accountable, then it will be difficult to have everyone on the same page during time-consuming projects that are on a time crunch. You also want to ensure that what your team is bringing to the table during weekly or monthly touch points is useful and within the role and goals of each individual. Push to see more of this and positively reinforce those who do make the extra effort to bring something helpful to the conversation.
Don’t Be Afraid To Involve Management
If, as an employee, you feel like your team isn’t doing enough with regards to effective collaboration, then don’t be afraid to involve management. Reaching out for help is important in ensuring that the entire company runs smoothly. Ask your manager for a one-on-one session to discuss your concerns or contact them privately to express what you think might be going wrong and how to fix it. In the end, both your team and your manager will be grateful that you made the effort to fix an issue before it got out of hand and affected the outcome of a project or deal.
Foster Diversity In Perspectives
There really isn’t any use in everyone on the team having the same perspective, which is why it is important to encourage diversity in how your employees or teammates see certain projects or situations. By creating a safe environment for these different opinions to be expressed openly and without contempt collaboration will be that much more fluid between team members and new, innovative ideas will arise. Only good can come from difference, and it is your job as a manager to promote it in daily work processes for better relationships with your employees and the work itself.
Be Appreciative And Engaging
When a team does make the extra effort to communicate openly and express their differing opinions, managers and other employees should be appreciative and engaging with them. As a manager, show them that you know what goes into their role and how much work it is to collaborate effectively in order to build a strong, understanding relationship with your employees. If an employee isn’t engaged in their work, then they won’t want to put in the effort to improve certain processes that will help the company as a whole.
Reward Project Achievements
The easiest way to continue to encourage employees to work together with seamless collaboration is by acknowledging and rewarding certain achievements. If a project has just been closed ahead of schedule because of the effective work within the data room during due diligence and document review, then show your team that you’ve noticed and are appreciative of the work they put in during difficult times. They will be thankful for the praise and willing to work just as hard in the future.