How do you manage your global teams? How well do they collaborate? Why do they struggle? What can you do to help?
In this Key I will demystify collaboration. We do not need to collaborate because it's nice or it makes us feel warm and fuzzy. 'Nice' and 'warm and fuzzy' are not the reasons to invest in and cultivate breakthrough collaboration.
Most of the companies we help have global teams. They need to collaborate across time zones, cultural differences, accent and language difficulties, and often across competing agendas. If they don't collaborate they inhibit efficiency, curtail effectiveness and add significant cost to the company's bottom line. In this Key you will discover the three critical elements that are absolutely essential to develop breakthrough collaboration.
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The three conditions that are critical to develop breakthrough collaboration are: mutual trust; shared imperative and shared purpose -- hence the Collaboration TIP.
Shared trust: Mutual trust is the first necessary condition to enable collaboration. If we don't trust each other we aren't even on the approach road to collaboration and certainly not partnering. But trust by itself is not sufficient to get us to build breakthrough collaboration.
Shared imperative: Mutual trust brings us to communicate openly. We now need a compelling reason to collaborate. We must find a shared imperative. We must discover and agree that there is an urgent need for us to partner. Partnering must be a mutual urgency. If we can each deliver our objectives on our own without collaborating, we will not overcome the barriers preventing us from breakthrough collaboration. And we won't invest the effort needed to build collaborative practices.
Shared Purpose: Shared imperative and mutual trust help us collaborate in the short term. Once the imperative has been addressed and the passion abates the impetus to collaborate diminishes and even evaporates. To build sustained and durable partnering we must identify a shared purpose. As we develop our shared vision and purpose we ensure that our collaboration is built to last and will not get undone in the first moment the urgency of our partnering subsides.
Therefore to build breakthrough partnering you must cultivate the Collaboration TIP:
- Trust: We trust each other and communicate transparently.
- Imperative: We have a common need (burning platform) or threat (enemy).
- Purpose: We have a shared purpose, a shared vision and are rewarded for our shared success.
Now it's your turn. Turn the Key. Build breakthrough collaboration. Cultivate trustful relationships. Develop a shared understanding of the urgency to partner. And build a shared vision to mobilize sustained collaboration as you work to actualize your shared purpose.
© Aviv Shahar