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Collaboration is a proven way of reaching across the globe, through time-zones and cultures, to get tasks done. While collaboration is widely understood as a term, many people don’t fully understand how to perform it in practice.
The project leader ultimately sets the tone for a new collaboration project. A common mistake to assume at the start that everyone is aware of what needs to be done, just because they have been in a collaboration previously. So from the outset, the leader should paint a picture of success for the collaborative team, and outline the ‘end-in-mind’. This should include specific details on the performance that is required from individuals and from the team, the level of input or work needed, and the project roadmap and timescale. When everyone involved in a collaboration project knows what they have to do, for whom, by when, and to what standard, they become willing and effective participants, and are on the road to a successful conclusion.
As an individual team member, you will need to establish trust between yourself and all of the various stakeholders on the project, and to demonstrate your own personal credibility. This takes work, and time, but is a vital step on the road to successful collaboration.
To help establish yourself as a trustworthy, credible collaborator, be honest with yourself, right from the start, about what you are bringing to the table. Ask yourself questions like:
By answering these questions honestly, you will get a sense of how successful a collaborator you are likely to be, how credible and trustworthy your co-collaborators will find you, and what areas you need to work on.
From the start of the process, focus on taking concrete steps that maximize your personal credibility.
CEO of Personal Skills Training, Senior Coach at Kevin J Reid Coaching, Co-founder and Communications Director of The Counsel.ie, and Lead Collaborator of LeitrimMade.com
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ABOUT THIS DIGITAL MARKETING MODULE
Organizations are more likely to perform well when their employees work together effectively. To be successful in today’s workplace, it’s important to develop good interpersonal relationships with your colleagues, and to be able to collaborate with them successfully when the need arises. It’s also important to be able to communicate well with your colleagues, so you can get your message across and ensure it is understood.
In this module, you will learn about the personal skills you should cultivate in order to collaborate successfully, such as the ability to listen actively and to ‘lead beyond your authority’. You will also discover strategies you can use to improve team collaboration, such as holding regular meetings and sending fewer emails.
You will learn why good communication matters – and how you are communicating even when you are silent, before you utter a single word. You will also be introduced to strategies you can use to communicate effectively and improve your day-to-day interactions with others, including observing body language, asking short but impactful questions, and using pauses for effect.