[Excerpt from Building Real Collaboration into Your Organization. Pratichi Shah via Stanford Social Innovation Review]
It is the long history of humankind (and animal kind, too) those who learned to collaborate and improvise most effectively have prevailed.
Across sectors and sub-sectors, collaboration is considered critical to organisational success—just ask. Has your organisation identified collaboration as a fundamental leadership skill? Check. Listed it as an organisation value? Done. Do you deliberately and consistently shape your organisation for impactful internal and external collaboration? Not so fast. As with many things, leaders often assume that if they say it, it will happen. It won’t. Leaders need to spend the time and energy to turn the catchphrase into reality, and focusing on three organisational pillars—culture, people, and leadership—can help. Here’s how.
Build it. No, really. Too often, we think organisational culture will emerge as a function of mission alone. But to really shape culture and embed collaboration as an integral part, leaders need to be explicit about its importance. Go beyond identifying collaboration as an organisational value, and make it part of your employer brand. In other words, identify what is unique and positive (in addition to mission) about being part of the organization. Talk about the kinds of collaboration that may further your organisations mission and encourage exploration in all departments as a regular way of approaching work. Brainstorm where synergies may lie—inside and outside of the organisation—and how to explore them.
For more on how culture, people and leadership can fuel meaningful collaboration, click here.
Excerpt shared with permissions from the Stanford Social Innovation Review, and with permissions from the author. Read the original article in full here.
About the author: Pratichi Shah is a human resources strategist with experience in talent management, human resources, executive coaching, and organizational development. She is the founder and CEO of Flourish Talent Management Solutions, a firm that works exclusively with the nonprofit and philanthropic communities to increase impact through organizational talent strategy development; culture alignment; and training and development. Visit the Advancing Collaboration hub for more articles and relevant resources, including an Advancing Collaboration pledge.