29May

It is tough times for businesses today. Never has it been as important as now to do more with less, share resources and leverage each other’s strengths and get people to work TOGETHER as a single unit to beat the odds. Collaboration is the key to accelerating performance improvements and transformation. Different cultures, working styles and views make any project or initiative that needs collaboration a nightmare.

It does not have to be that way, though.  With a little bit of respect, give-and-take and clear communication, collaboration can become a reality.  Here are five behaviors to get people to work together that if put into practice will align individual performers into a high performance cohesive team ready to take on any challenge:

Get People to Work Together #1: Have One Shared Purpose

Everyone on the team needs to have a shared purpose or goal leaving individual ambitions or personal agendas aside. Before starting on a project or mission, decide what the primary motive for collaboration is and what needs to be achieved when. Pull your weight, give it your best effort and be mindful about deadlines and commitments.

Get People to Work Together #2: Treat Each Other With Respect –

Treat each other with respect. Allow different views to come on the table giving each view equal consideration before collectively agreeing on the best course of action. Listen, participate and contribute. Give value to get value.

Get People to Work Together #3: Share Credit –

Don’t be an appreciation hog and shy away from giving appreciation where it is due. Be quick to praise and slow to blame. Aim for visibility of the group efforts and not just of your own. As Harry Truman said – It is amazing how much you can accomplish when it doesn’t matter who gets the credit.

Get People to Work Together #4: Let go of the “I” –

You may be an expert and know just the right way to get things done but that’s not what is wanted here. Let go of your ego and consider what the right way is to proceed as a team. Focus your energies and abilities in competing “outside” rather than “inside”. In-fighting is a sure recipe for failure.

Get People to Work Together #5: Leverage Strengths and Manage Weaknesses –

Leverage strengths and make up for each other’s weaknesses to take your group to levels of success that would not have been possible individually. Spend some time knowing each other’s strengths and weakness – ask questions, share ideas, learn new information, and bounce suggestions off one another. Then, divide responsibilities and set accountabilities so that the right people are on the right jobs and the goal becomes manageable.

What other behaviors have worked to get people to work together and improve collaboration in your organization? What irritates you when you are part of a team? I would love to get your insights.

Pic Courtesy : Tim Fishburne, the Marketoonist.

17 Comments:

    • khadeejah
    • February 23, 2012
    • Reply

    very brilliant article and highly educating. it addresses many of the work challenges that results to frustration and often times depression. thanks for sharing this :). here are some of the attitudes that irritate me when i am part of a team and i would love to get your view on how best to manage them
    -hoarding information
    -owning the job (some people prefer to work alone so they sort of do this behind your back)
    -know it alls
    -lack of spirit of oneness or togetherness as team members etc

      • Suchitra Mishra
      • February 24, 2012
      • Reply

      Hello Khadeejah,

      Good to “see” you again. Thanks for sharing your views and challenges. When you are working in a team with a flat structure, you have to depend on your influencing abilities rather than authority. And the best way to influence is to set an example – be a model yourself for the behavior that you think is appropriate. Be consistent and patient in all your interactions. Soon, you will see the change, I promise 🙂
      For example, share the info you have freely, keep people posted on what you are doing, listen to the “know-it-alls” till they run out of steam, try and engage with all the team members at an individual level. The maxim -“Kill people with kindness” does work out in the end. It is very difficult to be rude or selfish in the face of persistent niceness, consideration and more importantly value that one brings to the table.
      Good luck !

      Regards,
      Suchitra

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    • Kevin Ross
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    • Reply

    Hello Suchitra,

    You are right, for improve Business Operations Performance Management, team work (people to work Together) is so important but in business operations there in many departments if some one give idea or suggestions to other department they will not be consider or they restricted to there areas only.
    so there will be some lack of improvement in the business performance.

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