TMA World Viewpoint 29: A Guide To Successful Collaboration

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Information about TMA World Viewpoint 29: A Guide To Successful Collaboration

Published on August 9, 2013

Author: StevenParkinson

Source: slideshare.net

Description

We live in an age of increasing globalization, resulting in
higher levels of complexity that can only be managed by successful collaboration and greater teamwork.

This TMA World presentation advises on best practices, which will ensure that your teams collaborate as effectively as possible, therefore maximizing the productivity of your organization.

For more advice on successful collaboration and the other skills you and your organization require to thrive in the borderless workplace, contact us today: enquiries@tmaworld.com or visit our website: www.tmaworld.com

A Guide to… Successful Collaboration

© Transnational Management Associates Ltd. All Rights Reserved. 2 We live in an age of increasing globalization, resulting in higher levels of complexity that can only be managed by greater teamwork.

© Transnational Management Associates Ltd. All Rights Reserved. 3 Before we look at just what it takes to be successful at collaboration, let’s consider what the potential barriers are if you fail to work effectively with other colleagues. Isolation Confusion Fragmentation

© Transnational Management Associates Ltd. All Rights Reserved. 4 One barrier can be isolation – especially when working across different geographies, time zones and cultures. A second barrier that can hinder good collaboration is confusion; and finally the third obstacle is that of fragmentation – where processes and procedures are disjointed and disconnected.

© Transnational Management Associates Ltd. All Rights Reserved. 5 Isolation to Engagement Confusion to Clarity Fragmentation to Cohesion However, for every barrier there is a countermeasure. For isolation – consider engagement; for confusion – clarity and for fragmentation, we need cohesion. With this in mind, let’s take a deeper dive and look at specific factors that will help make you a far better collaborator.

© Transnational Management Associates Ltd. All Rights Reserved. 6 Trust is everything and without it you have nothing. In the book, “Why Teams Don’t Work”, Michael Finley and Harvey Robbins write: ‘Trust is the blood of teams – the river that carries it along, that pulses with life, that brings thought and power to everything the team attempts.’ Never underestimate the importance of trust

© Transnational Management Associates Ltd. All Rights Reserved. 7 Reflect on the above questions and ask yourself if, as a leader, you have done enough to foster a climate of trust, or if as a team member, you do enough to promote and warrant it. Is there contractual trust i.e. do I keep my word? Have I established trust of competence i.e. do I have the skills to support what I say? Does self-disclosure trust happen i.e. do I share my thoughts and feelings? Have I established a culture where people do not feel persecuted and harassed i.e. trust of intention? Never underestimate the importance of trust

© Transnational Management Associates Ltd. All Rights Reserved. 8 Teams need to have a clear direction and shared set of priorities. If they don’t, fragmentation will occur, with the team having no clear sense of purpose. The types of questions you need to ask, therefore, include: Does your team have a goal? What is it? Has it been communicated? Does everyone understand it? Has everyone bought into it? Make sure you are on the same page 1 2 3 4 5

© Transnational Management Associates Ltd. All Rights Reserved. 9 Some things that you can do to ensure everyone is on the same page include the following: Create a purpose statement which includes a set of team principles and a strategy plan. Eliminate activities non- aligned with the key purpose of the team. Manage local demands that could take members off-track. Revisit team purpose, etc., on a regular basis to reinforce and check continued validity.

© Transnational Management Associates Ltd. All Rights Reserved. 10 Good communication involves not just what you say and how you say it but how you strategize your communication. This can often be overlooked. When communicating, factor in the following: Communication is a two-way street. Once conveyed, ensure you follow-up to see if the message has been understood. Think about how you use your language. Do you check yourself when composing an e-mail to a colleague? If English isn’t their first language, do you ensure that you compose the message with that in mind? Be a great communicator to be a great collaborator

© Transnational Management Associates Ltd. All Rights Reserved. 11 Modify your pace of speech on conference calls and think about the cultural issues involved when working with a culturally diverse mix of colleagues. Make sure the right information is getting to the right people at the right time and in the right format. Role model constructive communication. Good communication involves not just what you say and how you say it but how you strategize your communication. This can often be overlooked. When communicating, factor in the following: Be a great communicator to be a great collaborator

© Transnational Management Associates Ltd. All Rights Reserved. 12 Communicate one-on-one and not just with the whole team. This builds relationships. Recognize the strengths and limitations of available communication technologies, and select the right technology for the right job. Good communication involves not just what you say and how you say it but how you strategize your communication. This can often be overlooked. When communicating, factor in the following: Be a great communicator to be a great collaborator Develop shared protocols for using communication methods most effectively, e.g., e-mail, teleconferences.

© Transnational Management Associates Ltd. All Rights Reserved. 13 Good communication involves not just what you say and how you say it but how you strategize your communication. This can often be overlooked. When communicating, factor in the following: Be a great communicator to be a great collaborator Provide frequent and timely information and feedback. Make sure that the decision-making process and outcomes are clear.

© Transnational Management Associates Ltd. All Rights Reserved. 14 Having a good amount of cultural intelligence will certainly help support the collaborative effort. Each culture has its own set of values and beliefs and that will be manifested in how people interact, manage and reason. Make sure you increase your knowledge of the cultures you are exposed to so that, at the very least, you minimize cultural faux pas and potentially forge far stronger bonds with your colleagues because you have a far greater understanding of how they operate. Be culturally savvy

© Transnational Management Associates Ltd. All Rights Reserved. 15 Successful CollaborationConsider the following and reflect on whether you need to double your efforts when dealing with different cultures: Support a climate in which people feel respected, fairly treated and valued. Role model inclusive language, e.g., ‘we’ rather than ‘I’. Role model inclusive behaviours, e.g., listening with an open mind, flexibility etc. Show interest in other team member countries and cultures. Be careful of denying or minimizing differences.

© Transnational Management Associates Ltd. All Rights Reserved. 16 Successful CollaborationConsider the following and reflect on whether you need to double your efforts when dealing with different cultures: Work at developing cultural self-awareness. Prepare yourself for cultural differences, but focus on understanding individuals on the team. Try to work with the values/beliefs of a culture. Be creative. Co-create shared agreements in areas where it is important to establish common ground. Look for opportunities to leverage differences to create value.

© Transnational Management Associates Ltd. All Rights Reserved. 17 An area that can sometimes suffer due to a lack of attention is that of not being aware of the collective set of skills and capabilities contained within a team. Managers have a responsibility to ensure they address this and when working with virtual teams, the old adage of out of sight, out of mind can certainly rings true. Have an acute understanding of the talent in your team

© Transnational Management Associates Ltd. All Rights Reserved. 18 If you are a leader, consider conducting a capability audit so you have a much better appraisal of individual skills and capabilities. Where are the gaps and where are the development opportunities? Is there an opportunity to create a global mentoring programme and will this, in turn help develop relationships, thus making the collaborative bond even stronger? Have an acute understanding of the talent in your team

© Transnational Management Associates Ltd. All Rights Reserved. 19 Successful Collaboration Think about some of these best practices: Identify your strengths and developmental areas. Identify resources to support your continuous learning. Communicate your knowledge, skills, and experiences. Build a virtual network of individuals that can support and complement your knowledge and skills.

© Transnational Management Associates Ltd. All Rights Reserved. 20 Successful Collaboration Think about some of these best practices: Create opportunities for sharing your knowledge, skills, and best practices with the team, and learning from others. Pay attention to the capability needs of the team as a whole, and identify how you could help meet those needs. Constructively challenge behaviours that weaken team capability.

© Transnational Management Associates Ltd. All Rights Reserved. 21 Successful Collaboration Think about some of these best practices: If you make a concerted effort to adopt many of these best practices, we are confident that you will make significant in-roads when it comes to being a successful collaborator.

© Transnational Management Associates Ltd. All Rights Reserved. 22 Webinar Twitter Blog Viewpoints and articles Publications Written by Terence Brake, Director of Learning & Innovation at TMA World. Our new Borderless Working e-book series About Us Visit www.tmaworld.com/insights to discover the latest thinking from our experts on global, collaborative, cross-cultural and virtual working. There you’ll find links to our:

© Transnational Management Associates Ltd. All Rights Reserved. 23 Above all we’d like to hear from you directly, so please don’t hesitate to send any comments, questions or feedback to us at: enquiries@tmaworld.com Or visit our website: www.tmaworld.com About Us Visit www.tmaworld.com/insights to discover the latest thinking from our experts on global, collaborative, cross-cultural and virtual working.

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