Two women collaborating in the office

Collaboration: More than just a buzzword

Collaboration has long been a buzzword in the world of business and for a good reason too. More often than not, collaboration drives more effective business outcomes and those that put in place the strategies and facilities to promote collaboration will advance higher than their competitors. Simply put, two heads are better than one.

Two women collaborating in the office

But what exactly is collaboration and how can it help you and your business excel?

Collaboration is when individuals or teams work together towards shared goals. According to J. Ibeh Agbanyim, there are five principles of collaboration which include applying trust, respect, willingness, empowerment, and effective communication to human relationships. These are combined to create purposeful connections to achieve a common goal and ultimately improve your bottom line. In today’s competitive environment if you are not collaborating then you are at a disadvantage.

Collaboration deserves the hype and this article, discusses 5 reasons why:

1. Knowledge-sharing

Working with people from different backgrounds and expertise will introduce you to a wealth of knowledge. You’d be surprised by the number of skills and information you pick up from others around you! This knowledge-sharing can assist in problem-solving, preserving existing knowledge, and increasing social interaction. When an employee acquires information but keeps it to themselves then the potential benefit is unrealised. But when that knowledge is shared, it can be applied to different contexts from the different team members, thus opening the doors to fresh ideas.

2. save time and costs

Delayed projects and tasks can cost businesses a lot of money. Collaboration helps with clarifying roles, monitoring progress, providing feedback, and sharing the load. When communication is clear, workers can consistently meet deadlines. This keeps the workflow going and the amount of time, people, and resources will be reduced.

3. employee engagement

Regularly working together with other people or other teams is an effective way of building trust and forming connections. The 2018 Global Study of Engagement found that workers who felt like members of a team were more than twice as likely to be engaged at work. When people are given the opportunity to collaborate, it improves teamwork which builds morale within the organisation. Collaboration on every level leads to engaged employees that are excited to take on projects and challenges.

4. Unify a dispersed workforce

In today’s working world, remote work is common and though it has its benefits, it also comes with its downsides such as workers feeling isolated from their company. Online collaboration tools and a business that fosters a high level of collaboration can help remote workers communicate real-time information and feel connected wherever they are located.

5. self-analysis

Working alongside others with different skill sets, experiences, and strengths, challenges workers to reflect on their competencies. What are their strengths and weaknesses? How can they contribute to the team? It opens the opportunity to leverage those differences and collaborate in a way that is complementary to each other.

Collaboration is a buzzword because it is necessary for businesses. The multitude of benefits such as increased productivity and innovation is worth the time and effort to cultivate a collaborative workplace. Now is the time to incorporate more ways to collaborate in your business so you too can reap the benefits and see your business thrive.

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