Collaboration initiatives for virtually all companies take time and we’re not talking about a few hours or days, we’re talking about many months and oftentimes years. During this period these collaboration projects can stall- start up and get momentum, then die off a few months later only to be resumed months after that. Those who are typically a part of a collaboration team can easily lose steam and eventually get exhausted and burned out, but the same can be said for any job out there. If you are a part of a collaboration task force, future of work initiative, or whatever your company wants to call it, there are a few things you can do to make sure that you don’t lose the collaboration steam needed to keep moving forward.
- Make sure that you know what you are getting involved to begin in and why. If you don’t understand these things then it can seem like you are drifting aimlessly forever.
- Go into this knowing that it is indeed a long term commitment.
- Having senior leadership support is crucial, before you agree to undertake or be a part of anything make sure you have this support. Your management team needs to have your back!
- Remember that you are not alone in this and that many companies around the world are trying to do exactly what you are doing. Reach out to these companies to share ideas and provide feedback to each other. Invite these people to come and present to your team to share their story.
- Make sure you are indeed a part of a team, helping spearhead a collaboration initiative is not easy and doing it alone or even with a tiny group is oftentimes just not realistic. Your team can help get you pumped up and excited when you feel like things aren’t moving anywhere.
- Stay up to date on industry news, announcements, new innovations, and ideas. Attend relevant conferences and events that get you exposed to what others are doing; build a network for yourself.
- Participate in webinars, speaking engagements, or anything else where you have the opportunity to share your story and motivate others. Join relevant groups or associations and make sure you have the support to do so.
- Be honest with your team and managers. If you feel things aren’t going anywhere tell your executive team and why and offer solutions for what you can do together to keep things moving.
- Use your vacation time and make sure to take some time for yourself when you need it.
- Hopefully your work allows you to work from home some days, make use of these as well. We aren’t machines and sometimes taking a break can really help us get re-energized.
- Regularly review or look at the accomplishments you and your team have made and the progress that has been achieved.
I realize that those of you out there who are trying to change your corporate culture and create a collaborative organization don’t have it easy. It’s hard work but think about how cool your jobs and initiatives are. You are literally helping your company evolve and change everything about how successful companies are run and managed. You are working against many years of legacy thinking and management approaches that are now being completely destroyed. You are building something new, something exciting, and something great. You are the innovators, the change agents, the disruptor, and the new leaders.
If you ever want to reach out to me or have me connect you with other people then please let me know. If you think you need a change I’m happy to make introductions to other companies and let you know of other opportunities as they cross my way. At the end of the day you shouldn’t be unhappy, I’ve always said that collaborative organizations make the world a better place and I believe that!
What other tips can you share? I’m here to help if you need it.