Transcript of "Are You Really A Collaborative Team Player?"
Are You Really A Collaborative Team Player?
Social media has played a significant role in facilitating collaboration through
interaction, sharing information and soliciting feedback through
public forums. Younger generations growing up with social
media have now become accustomed to collaborating through
groups to accomplish tasks. This behavior has now become a
norm which has carried over to the workplace.
As organizations expand into global markets and newer
generations enter the workforce (think of Millennials) working
virtually, in a collaborative way, is now a requirement to stay
Many organizations have adopted collaboration
tools, to provide the technology for active
participation. The shift to virtual working though
collaboration is not without its own challenges.
Think about cultural difference, time differences,
languages and geographies, and how to bring all
of those together in a productive way. At the
heart of collaboration lies relationship building
and trust. Both of which are not easily accomplished without putting some effort into
it. Even though technology may be used to virtually interact, the communication and
interpersonal skills to facilitate collaboration may still need to be cultivated. Take the
time to invest in building your skills to get the most out of your virtual work
Here are a few things to consider when collaborating virtually:
1. Be open-minded: Working in groups can be a rewarding and enriching
experience. Listening to and/or reading various perspectives, approaches and
ideas can increase your knowledge and expand your own thinking. Group
experiences are most gratifying if you keep an open mind to other people’s
contribution and ideas. The goal is to work together to achieve a common
objective. The more people feel “safe” to share their ideas and perspectives,
the more interesting and genuine the contributions will be. It creates a
positive, innovative environment where people can appreciate other
2. Share information: Have you
read an article that you think may
be beneficial to someone else?
Are you working on a project
where you could use someone
else’s expertise? Share
information with those who may
benefit from it. Once you share,
you will notice that your
colleagues will in turn start to
share with you. You may also
start getting invited to other meetings where you can share your expertise and
3. Participate in the conversation: What makes group projects so
successful are the ideas and perspectives that each person brings to the
table. When you’re at the table participate in the conversation. If you’re using
a technology platform provide
updates and suggestions to
contributions that will enhance
the virtual conversation. This
allows you to showcase your
skills and knowledge and learn
from others at the same time.
4. Be Respectful: When
participating virtually be
respectful of other people’s
ideas and suggestions. Even if
you don’t agree with something avoid writing comments such as “that won’t
work” or “that doesn’t make sense”. Dismissive comments may curb
collaboration rather than encourage it. Instead help direct the conversation to
address your concern. As an alternative try, “What might be some of the risks
or constraints we may need to consider?”
These are just a few suggestions to consider when working collaboratively.
Are there some recommendations you want to share?
By Ann Barrett, Director eRecruitment & Social Media Strategy