We’ve all heard the common adage “there is no ‘I’ in team.” This sentiment is continually reinforced throughout our childhood as we are taught to share our toys, to make friends, and be generous. We join team sports and group academic challenges and learn that many hands make light work. As we join the workforce, however, we begin to subtly unlearn these skills. In our hyper-competitive society, we can often forget these early lessons, whether through bad workplace experiences or lack of opportunity to develop professionally. We learn to work independently, forget to ask for help, and hold our cards close. But does this attitude really help our workplaces and careers? Experts say no. According to a Stanford study done in 2017, “social cues that signaled an invitation to work with others fueled intrinsic motivation even when people were working alone.” Many of these participants even experienced lower fatigue throughout the work day and an overall higher success rate in day-to-day tasks.
There are endless studies showing the benefits of workplace collaboration, but many employers struggle to create environments that foster strong, compatible teams. Limited collaboration can lead to significant damage like high attrition and decreased employee productivity which can be a deadly combination for companies seeking growth and quality talent. But how can workplaces better implement team collaboration? According to Sherrie Campbell, Psychologist/Author/Speaker, “The best way to transition from an individual to a collaborative mindset is to equip each team member for active participation in the group dynamic.” (Entrepreneur)
Here are 3 simple ways to promote workplace collaboration (all of which we put to good use in our office everyday) :