By Barbara Mitchell
Q: I want to encourage more collaboration among the people I manage. Can you help me with some ideas?
A: Encouraging collaboration starts with you. How collaborative are you with your peers and your team? Staffers take their cues from their leaders, so first make sure you examine how well you work with the people around you.
If you want your team to work better together, you need to tell them why it's important. Some people don't understand the value of sharing ideas as a way to improve the organization as a whole—they only see what winning means to them personally. So, get your team together and discuss the real benefits of collaboration. Share stories of where you've seen collaborative efforts move projects along, result in a major grant, or solve a membership issue. Stories will be motivating and memorable to your team.
Take some time to think about what else might be getting in the way of collaboration. Here are some questions to consider:
Share stories of where you've seen collaborative efforts move projects along, result in a major grant, or solve a membership issue.
Collaboration can be a powerful tool to help your organization grow and prosper. If you do your part, odds are your team will respond, and you'll see results.
Barbara Mitchell is a human resources and management consultant and author of The Big Book of HR and The Essential Workplace Conflict Handbook. Do you have a question you'd like her to answer in "Ask the Expert"? Send it to [email protected]