Guest post by Emma Grace Brown
Today, most progressive companies focus on teamwork. By allowing your employees to work as a team, you’ll boost their morale and productivity. While working as a team, employees will share ideas and develop cost-effective, efficient solutions to business problems.
The benefits of collaboration:
- Saves time and speeds up production
- More creativity and flexibility
- Improves the workplace atmosphere
- Network sharing
- Increased productivity
- Sharing responsibilities
- Boosts employees’ engagement
- Expands learning and skills
- Improves employees’ well-being
Here are the top six ways you can use to boost collaborative efforts in your organization:
- Cultivate a culture of transparency and openness
In an environment full of secrets, employees will find it hard to collaborate. Everyone will feel suspicious and scared to share their ideas. To avoid this and encourage your employees to collaborate, keep everything open and transparent. Feel free to involve even the junior staff in the decision-making process. If anything, they are the people on the ground who understand the actual needs of your customers.
Openness also requires that you open the communication channels to encourage idea-sharing. An open and judgment-free workplace will encourage employees to share ideas with confidence.
- Create opportunities for cross-team collaboration
When employees work with the same people or teams daily, everything will become a routine, killing the innovative spirit. To avoid this, allow different teams to collaborate. You can even allow different departments to collaborate. Using the right collaboration technology, tools, and platforms, you can make this possible.
The combination of varying skillsets and objectives enhances idea generation. The employees will be motivated to come out of their comfort zones and try to prove their worth. Collaboration between departments also encourages healthy competition.
- Rewarding collaboration efforts
Rewarding individuals can go a long way in encouraging them to work hard. It also encourages others to work hard so you can reward them as well.
In addition to rewarding individual employees, you can also recognize team efforts. Doing this will ensure most employees will look for opportunities to collaborate in the future.
Rewards don’t have to be expensive. You can give them certificates, t-shirts, coupons, or other simple gifts.
- Encouraging feedback
Of course, the ideas put forth by employees can’t be all good, but it’s imperative to provide feedback consistently while striving to remain positive. When you offer constructive criticism, your employees will likely feel encouraged to improve their suggestions or ideas. The trick is to appreciate the effort they put in place to develop the ideas.
In a group set-up, feedback helps in empowering team members, so they can enthusiastically contribute to the collaboration between themselves and their departments. Doing this will lead to the improvement and streamlining of processes.
Giving feedback on all ideas may be time-consuming, but it pays off in the long run. It encourages discussions between employees, thus boosting collaborative efforts.
- Use project-specific templates
Another excellent way of encouraging collaboration among your employees is to use professionally designed project-specific templates. For example, when launching a new product, a template can help simplify the whole process, which tends to be very complicated. Here’s an example of a go-to-market strategy that can simplify things for you by keeping everyone on track and ensuring that your employees don’t miss any critical steps.
Such a template includes a marketing strategy, business plan, and other information that helps product development. In addition, using a ready-made template streamlines the production process better than creating a template from scratch.
- Lead by example
You must be prepared to get your hands dirt when you want to encourage collaboration. Sitting in the office and issuing directives creates a wall between you and your employees. Instead, it’s advisable to socialize with your employees and even help with their duties once in a while.
Encourage other frontline leaders to do the same. Doing so will show the junior staff that they are valued and that their contribution to the company is appreciated. It will also encourage them to collaborate and help each other. More tips for leading by example on Bud to Boss.
Collaboration is one of the best ways to increase employee morale and productivity. Having your employees talk freely and share their ideas will help them open up and share their ideas.
Implementing the tips discussed above will go a long way in ensuring your employees work as a team for the benefit of your company.