Should You Force Collaboration?

If you rearrange the desk chairs, will collaboration take place?

We implement collaboration solutions that are not new - new is the change brought with the availability and fast adoption of collaboration software and mobile technologies.

But the decreased cost of infrastructure and storage have left many organizations forcing collaboration to their employees using solutions that do not match the need of the business or the corporate culture.

Instead of forcing collaboration to happen, companies need to create an environment in which collaboration can happen; to change how they operate to encourage employees to work together.

But how can an organization encourage collaboration without forcing it?

While the scientists and adventurers of the past invented things in their laboratories, today we work together to create value and bring change.

When Thomas Edison invented the phonograph in 1877, it was in his laboratory in New Jersey.

But, multiple teams from multiple companies and from different countries were working on the iPod.

Some people hate change, and when you are forcing them to do something, you cannot expect nothing more than minimal results.

Inspired people act, think and do differently, and part of driving creativity and innovation is having the same goal.

If companies are reinforcing unnecessary hierarchy or certain internal competition, collaboration is forced.

Information age, where businesses operate in real time, calls for changing the structure of the company.

A common misconception is that people are to blame when collaboration fails. But when people are in the new organizational structure, their behaviour will change.

So what is the role of collaboration technology?

When organizations need to distribute complex workloads, the collaboration technology should enable the end user to easily format and consume information and data.

With collaboration done right, using the right technology, collaborating across generations, functions, levels and regions create greater value.

Everybody has to have access to the same data and information with input into how business is conducted.

We see the duality of collaboration technologies with companies that are forcing their employees to use Social Business Networks without considering the real need for such tools. To be able to reduce product cycle time, and to measure it, is the benefit of collaboration.

End users are looking for easier ways to quickly share information and collaborate, and they want flexibility and usability and businesses are trying to find new ways to optimize productivity.

Collaborative technology brings people together and enables them to work together, shortening product development time - that’s real money.

The key role of collaboration technology is to set the stage so collaboration can flourish and take hold.


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