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It’s no secret that effective team collaboration leads to a vast array of advantages, including innovation, increased efficiency, and improved business outcomes. However, creating a culture of collaboration is easier said than done, especially now that remote work is becoming increasingly common.
There are several ways to foster a collaborative work environment. However, some of the most successful at it have similar processes and practices in place. So, what do these workplaces have in common?
Read on to learn about the best practices that encourage collaboration.
Leaders must stop micromanaging, as it will only undermine collaboration. Thus, make sure that every member of the team has their own tasks and goals.
Delegating responsibility lets your team know that you have faith in their abilities and ideas. By allowing everyone to contribute, you can make employees feel that their efforts are valued. At the same time, you’d make them feel like they are a part of a team where their contributions are important.
As much as possible, give them the opportunity to figure out their own methods for accomplishing their tasks. After all, everyone works differently. Still, make sure that they are aware of what is expected from them without being too overly critical.
Assigning tasks can create a sense of ownership and accountability, which encourages each member to take responsibility for their work. This should motivate your workforce to be productive.
Make sure to set SMART goals—specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-based. Once teams have a clear direction that they can work towards, they can collaborate effectively as a single unit instead of trying to outperform one another. It can keep their efforts aligned and focused, so they won’t end up wasting their efforts.
Team leaders must practice what they preach. They must set great examples for the team. You shouldn’t just tell them the values and expectations that you want them to follow. You should model the behavior that you want them to exude.
When you bring your team together for open dialogue and sharing, you can encourage communication by being open to feedback and suggestions. You should be open to healthy discourse as well. That means, you shouldn’t get worried whenever your team has different ideas. As a leader, you can respond professionally and respectfully at all times.
You can even implement open channels of communication, allowing anyone to share their ideas privately—whether face-to-face or remotely.
The truth is that many employees are afraid to actively participate in team meetings. Many are terrified to voice out their ideas due to the fear of making mistakes.
These are very common barriers that hinder collaboration. However, you can overcome them by ensuring them that the organization values their creativity. You can do that by establishing a healthy and judgment-free environment, where even the strangest and wildest ideas are welcome.
Whenever their risk-tasking results in positive outcomes, acknowledge and rewards their efforts. Surely, mistakes are bound to happen along the way. When they do, you can help them by providing feedback.
A work environment where members can learn from each other and grow together is a win-win setting for everyone. While the company reaps positive results, the workforce can enjoy personal and professional growth.
Setting up social gatherings outside the office, where your workforce can comfortably get together and bond, is an effective way to break down individual biases and combat stereotyping. This enables your team to improve communication. The more they bond, the more they see each other as one unit.
If, say, someone messes up in a task or a project, it would be harder for the team to point their finger at their colleagues. Instead, it’ll be a learning experience for the entire team. And, as a team, they’d come up with solutions to overcome their problem.
Team leaders can have one-on-one sessions with their members. Instead of having impersonal annual reviews, do frequent coaching sessions with your members. You can discuss everything, from their victories and failures. You can ask about issues that are troubling them, especially when you see changes in their performance or productivity.
Through these sessions, your team can also identify interests and passions that are worth exploring further and mastering. By giving your workforce to engage in such healthy discussions with management, you can help boost their personal and professional development.
Again, the more connected they feel to the team, as well as the organization, the more motivated they’d be to perform well.
To maintain this culture of collaboration, make sure to recognize and reward the collective efforts of your team. It validates the time and energy dedicate to their job. It prevents individualism and fuels their sense of team spirit.
Employee recognition is also important to your workforce’s happiness and satisfaction. By rewarding their efforts, you can continue to motivate them to do better. You can inspire them to work together towards a common goal.
Investing in a digital workplace that unifies business tools, activities, and processes makes it easier to build a culture of collaboration. No matter where your employees are working from, the entire team can combine their knowledge and expertise to achieve a common goal.
Overcoming the common barriers to team collaboration can be challenging, especially now that the workforce is working remotely. But, with the help of a digital workplace, you can simplify and optimize operations. You can delegate and monitor tasks. You can enhance communication and collaboration no matter how large and dispersed your remote workforce is.
Kissflow equips teams with all the digital tools they need to have open and active communication from any device. It can power businesses of all shapes and sizes by bringing work together in a single unified space. It can connect teams together regardless of where they are located in the world.