Although technology has made collaboration much easier, successfully implementing collaboration starts with collaborating people.
Companies can purchase the latest and greatest collaboration software, establish an infrastructure to share knowledge and even create numerous policies to incentivize collaborative efforts, but if the team is not willing to collaborate, all these programs actions are in vain.
Choose collaboration tools that influence employee behavior to work together efficiently and effectively
Look for the following qualities in a collaboration solution to facilitate productive and meaningful collaboration among co workers:
- The collaboration solution should help employees turn knowledge into action—communicating with peers and sharing files in itself doesn’t suffice in achieving the goals of collaboration: getting stuff done faster and better together. Instead, the collaboration solutions should shape workflows that team members can leverage to progress through projects as they work together.
- The solution should enable effective coordination between team members, departments and organizations alike—vendors and partners may not use the same systems internally, but that’s ok because many collab solutions offer support for third-party or external participants often offering customized permissions in order to keep private content internal.
- You can’t get 100 percent of your workforce to love your collaboration tools 100 percent of the time—but you can choose solutions that are reasonably acceptable at least. Choose a collab solution designed to avoid clutter and confusion. Simple interface and intuitive interface workflows help avoid confusion and keep team members on track. Less is more. The solution doesn’t have to offer the best interface ever, just make sure it isn’t annoyingly complex or has a steep learning curve. It doesn’t have to offer every fancy new feature out there. If it just works, delivers results and enables effective collaboration, it’s exactly what you need to support collaborating people.
Change requires commitment and involvement by all parties. The best approach to initiate a collaborative attitude among the workforce is to illicit involvement in shifting the company’s attitude and culture towards collaboration. Collaboration solutions typically offer adequate configuration capabilities for organizations to implement their own collaboration strategies. This means leaders and decision makers can implement collaboration workflows into business processes such that employees find using it very natural.
Every great solution will come with some unhappy people
There will always be people that resist change. Rather than force your new collaboration system on them, plan, create and deliver standardized process workflows via collaboration tools so that employees are inclined toward using the technology as they work together.
Increased adoption of collaboration tools doesn’t automatically yield success, but using the technology to guide users on the optimal approach to get work done faster and more productively is the real game changer. The role of decision makers is to devise strategies and processes that enable collaboration, and the role of collaboration solution is to implement those plans.
Foster collaboration with incentives
Incentivize desired collaborative behaviors in the same way your organization incentivizes performance and hard work. Implement gamification or a rewarding system to recognize and appreciate positive collaboration initiatives by employees.
Want to learn more on selecting the right collaboration solutions and actually making it work? Contact us today.