9 Best Practices for Enhancing Employee Collaboration in the Workplace
Collaborative teams can achieve company goals quickly and easily. As per a 2022 report, around 75% of employees say teamwork and collaboration are essential, and due to this, they are 17% more satisfied with their jobs. It also says companies that promote collaboration at work have 50% less employee turnover rates. The same report says that around 86% of leaders blame a lack of collaboration for workplace failures. While the data shows how vital employee collaboration is, what are the best practices an organization should follow to enhance it?
Employee Collaboration and its Benefits
Employee collaboration is employees working together to achieve the company’s goal. It offers the following benefits:
- Each employee brings their specific skills and adds versatility to the team.
- Team collaboration gives every employee a chance to learn and pool their strength into the work.
- It ensures everyone is on the same page, no employees feel missing out, and they are actively participating in the teamwork.
- Employees feel they are heard, they matter to the projects they are working on, and they give them job satisfaction.
- Employees make new connections at work, and it reduces their stress and workload.
- It improves employee engagement and productivity.
There are two types of employee collaboration:
- Synchronous Employee Collaboration: In this method, different teams and their members work together on a real-time basis using the company’s internal communication system. They can use messaging tools and internal communication platforms, like PeopleOne, a SharePoint-based intranet solution.
- Asynchronous Employee Collaboration: In this method, employee interactions are time-shifted to accommodate employees from different shifts and time zones. The data and reports are shared in the digital workplace and can be assessed by users at any time.
Best Practices to Enhance Employee Collaboration in the Workplace
Having a collaborative team at the company is no simple feat. It takes a lot of effort, time, and money to bring employees together. Wondering how you can improve employee collaboration at your company? Consider the following best practices for enhancing employee collaboration in your workplace:
1. Build Positive Work Environment: It is important that everyone feels safe and secure to collaborate with other members. So, the organization should facilitate a work environment that is positive, supportive, and motivational. No employee should feel that their efforts are not appreciated or acknowledged. The team members should have empathy for each other. They must understand their strengths and weaknesses and build trust toward each other.
2. Devise Clear Communication Strategy: If you want to have a collaborative team, you must clearly communicate what you expect from them. Ask the employees to share their thoughts, positive or negative, on working collaboratively. They can also address their concerns and advise on how to improve their team collaboration.
3. Leverage the Power of Digital Platforms: Your company might have remote, part-time, full-time employees with different time zones or working shifts. You can help them collaborate for work using platforms like PeopleOne, where they can access essential information at their convenience. It can be used to easily find contact information of any employee, establish communication with them, initiate and participate in discussions, and help to achieve their work goals effectively.
4. Promote Employee Strengths: A successful collaboration can promote the strengths of their employees. It will improve employee engagement and productivity. You may also conduct a personality test, give each employee insights and allow other employees to know their strengths to make them feel valued.
5. Organize Brainstorming Sessions: Every organization needs new creative ideas to grow. They can conduct brainstorming sessions where the employees can share and discuss ideas. It can be new product ideas, marketing ideas, facility maintenance ideas, and so on. The sessions should be conducted in a way where every team member can freely express their thoughts without fear of being judged. Also, not everyone has an idea on the spot, so you can ask them to share it later.
6. Invest in Technology: Companies should automate their administrative tasks, so employees spend more time on the assignments. Invest in tools and software that automate the most common workflows for your employees. This helps the organization free up employees’ time to focus on projects that adds more value to your customers. Remember, happier employees make customers happy.
7. Facilitate Socializing Outside Work: When team members spend time together away from work, they get to know each other well. Companies can conduct team-building activities to build meaningful relationships. The bonding developed in these non-work interactions will reflect significantly in the workplace, and results in better collaboration.
8. Handle Mistake Effectively: Anyone can commit mistakes in the company. It is important how its leaders handle them. Instead of pointing the mistakes towards individuals, organization leaders should take ownership and make the team understand that mistakes are part of the learning process. Use it as an opportunity to make the team learn from each other’s mistakes. It will help them work more efficiently on future projects.
9. Lead the Team: For effective employee collaboration, leaders should cooperate with others. Spend time with each team member, have unofficial conversations during coffee-breaks or lunch, make requests and support them. It is important to listen to their requests, avoid unnecessary promises, and build a relationship where they can trust you.
Collaboration Builds Employee Productivity
Collaboration between employees makes them more engaged, more productive, more confident, and makes them feel like they are valued. It makes it easier to share information and learn new skills quickly. It will lead to a more productive workplace, better products, new ideas, and high profits in the long run.
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