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Collaboration Roadblocks

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Today's workforce is much more complex than it was a decade ago. The average team size has grown, virtual teams are becoming more common, our workforce has become increasingly more diverse, and our …

Today's workforce is much more complex than it was a decade ago. The average team size has grown, virtual teams are becoming more common, our workforce has become increasingly more diverse, and our employees have higher levels of education.

The increased complexity has created "Collaboration Roadblocks" within our organizations. Today, we are seeing reduced cooperation and knowledge sharing among team members.

This presentation describes the four "Collaboration Roadblocks" and provides suggestions on how to overcome them.

Published in Business , Education , Technology
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Transcript

  • 1. Collaboration Roadblocks Prepared by Christopher Smith September 13, 2011
  • 2. Table of Contents
    • Defining “collaboration”
    • Important statistics
    • Collaboration Roadblocks
      • Large Team Size
      • Virtual Participation
      • Diversity
      • High Education Levels
    • Recommendations
    • Contact Information
  • 3. Defining “collaboration”
    • When individuals work together to a common purpose to achieve business benefit.
    • Examples of collaboration,
        • Linux – An open source operating system built by thousands of developers worldwide, working together in creative and efficient ways.
        • Toyota – At the heart of the Toyota is a collection of work, communication, and leadership practices that contribute to their successful collaboration efforts.
  • 4. Important statistics
    • 67% of employees believe there are colleagues who can help them do their job better.
    • 39% say they have difficulty locating the right people
    • Only 25% frequently go outside their department to seek or share knowledge.
    • 38% don’t get asked for their help & information
  • 5. Collaboration Roadblocks
    • In a survey of over 1,500 employees from 50 teams across15 companies, four common roadblocks to collaboration were found:
      • Large Team Size
      • Virtual Participation
      • Diversity
      • High Education Levels
    Reference: Eight Ways to Build Collaborative Teams. Lynda Gratton and Tamara J. Erickson. Harvard Business Review, 2009.
  • 6. Large Team Size
    • Context: The average size of team size has grown over the last decade. Today, it is not uncommon to find teams with over 100 members.
    • Fact: When team size exceeds 20 members, the level of natural cooperation decreases.
    • Solution: To ensure effective collaboration, try to keep teams small; less than 20 members if possible.
  • 7. Virtual Participation
    • Context: Technology has enabled teams members to work from distances apart.
    • Fact: As teams become more virtual, collaboration declines.
    • Solution: When possible, team members should be working in the same office space.
  • 8. Diversity
    • Context: Today’s workforce includes individuals from all walks of life.
    • Fact: Teams with high levels of diversity can drive innovation, but reduce the chance of knowledge sharing amongst members.
    • Solution: Include two or more individuals who have worked together previously on the same project.
  • 9. High Education Levels
    • Context: Complex teams often depend on a variety of specialized, highly educated members.
    • Fact: The greater proportion of highly education members on a team, the more likely unproductive conflicts will arise.
    • Solution: If possible, keep the need for specialized members to a minimum.
  • 10. Recommendations
    • Keep team sizes low. As team size grows, cooperation declines.
    • Encourage your team to work in the office.
    • Reduce diversity by including two or more members who have worked together.
    • Prepare for conflict between highly educated, specialized members.
  • 11.
    • “ Coming together is a beginning, staying together is progress, and working together is success.”
    • – Henry Ford
  • 12. Contact Information
    • Have Questions? Feedback?
    • LinkedIn : http://ca.linkedin.com/in/chrisasmith  
    • Twitter : http://twitter.com/csedev
    • Blog : http://www.csedev.com
    • Email : [email_address]