The world is simmering under the threat of Covid which means now more than ever, people are choosing to work from home.
It means that remote teams are in vogue and there’s a need to create collaboration among team members.
Today teams can have members spread across the globe. There are people in teams spread across by geography, by time and horizons that is unimaginable.
Research shows that team members collaborate more easily and naturally if they feel part of the same homogeneous construct. If they feel they’re alike and part of the same thing. The differences that limit this extend from differing nationality to ages and educational qualifications.
Team diversity also means that people are collaborating with other people they barely know. This means they are communicating and assigning tasks to individuals drawn from separate divisions of the company, from outside the company and so on.
So what is it that makes a team succeed or fail?
A team’s success or failure is closely reflected in how the top executives believe and execute. To do this team members need to feel secure at creating and maintaining social relationships. They need to demonstrate collaboration. They need to experience interactions from top to bottom.
Investing in signature relationship practices.
Complex teams thrive when top executives create an environment where they invest in maintaining social relationships. This is clearly achieved through signature practices. What are they?
Taking the whole team to an outing or collaborative exercise once in a while. Or something so unique to the company that’s impossible to replicate. Zappos encourage customer support agents to spend company money to send wow gifts to its customers. These are signature practices that differentiate a company.
Royal Bank of Scotland’s CEO Fred Goodwin invest nearly 350 million pounds to open a new heardquarter building in 2005 to foster collaboration. The indoor space allows more than 3000 employees of the organization to meet, discuss and talk.
It’s a space to encourage free flow of ideas. The space is mostly transparent with shops, saloons, tracks and cycling trails build in. There are gyms and pools and football pitches. Employees feel they’re walking into a residential colony leaving office behind.
Ensuring the requisite skills.
A team can die if not everyone is on the same page around collaboration. There are multipe factors that boost collaboration. But, the strongest might be putting people with skillsets int the same group. If peple don’t know what they are doing, odds are they’re not going to be very good at the tasks.
In the same way being encouraged to cooperate by itself doesn’t guarantee that people will.
They ned to know how to.
One sill that’s necessary to this is being able to appreciate others, drive purpose filed conversations, resolve conflicts and be great managers.
And this is achieved by training employees in these areas.
With this there’s a marked improvement in performance of the team as a whole.
PriceWaterhouseCoopers is one of the biggest companies that has the best records on productively collaborating. They have nearly 140,000 employees working in over 150 countires. The added responsiblity means team members are trained in EQ, in networking, in holding conversations, listening skills, in social responsibility and forwarding the company’s stance, strategy and values