FLEXICON

COLLABORATION

collaboration

COLLABORATION
\ kə-​ˌla-​bə-​ˈrā-​shən \

Transformation is a collaborative effort. The dictionary describes collaboration as the act of working jointly with others or together, especially in an intellectual endeavor. But in real life, this thinking and acting as one is easier said than done. On the surface, there is much agreement that we desperately need cross-disciplinary collaboration to generate new ideas and to leverage the full potential of innovative wisdom in an organization. Among them, however, there is little agreement on how to achieve this.

Theoretically giving everyone the possibility to participate, to speak up, and involve sounds nice, but in reality it has not yet been clearly demonstrated that a team does necessarily generate more ideas than the sum of individuals. In fact, often the opposite is the case – due to cultural forces that prevent new ideas from arising or being pursued further. The cry for more collaboration is often just the wish for increasing speed and flexibility in order to keep up with the circumstances out there.

Good collaboration is not so much about infrastructure and formalities but rather about building good and sustainable relationships. And good relationships are made of the desire to understand each other, mutual trust, the willingness to transfer responsibility and enable people to make better use of their potential. This takes time and patience. But I am firmly convinced that good relationships increase speed, agility and mutual support. Which leads directly to better quality, and better business. Don’t wait for others to make the first step. Don’t wait for tools and processes either. Start with yourself and then change conditions step by step.

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