Updated: Dec 31, 2018
When two or more people work together on a project, they are collaborating. It takes teamwork to collaborate. Now, I don’t want you to think I don’t believe in the Power of One, because I do. It takes both, the power of one and collaboration with others, to be an effective leader. At one time when we collaborated we were usually face-to-face, on the telephone or using snail mail to communicate with one another. Now technology has given us notebooks, tablets, smartphones, and meeting apps to collaborate over the world. Michael Piazza lives in Mississippi and I live in Florida. We collaborate on our writing and website projects. While we have common talents, we also have unique individual talents. We usually use a weekly telephone call to set priorities and encourage one another. We also use email, OneNote, and Dropbox to transmit information to one another to keep us on track.
Employees in small and large organizations telecommute to work and use electronic tools to work with one another. Cloud collaboration allows people to work together on documents and other data types that are stored off-premises. Team members use a cloud-based platform to share, edit, and work together on projects. Asynchronous collaboration is used when participants are not communicating and working together at the same time. Synchronous collaboration is used when participants work together simultaneously and communicate in real time as they work. Collaboration is used to make decisions, generate creative ideas, and develop strategies team members can incorporate in their projects. They work together to jointly produce a desired outcome.
The potential benefits of working with others to produce or create something include:
Builds awareness of interdependence.
Makes effective use of individual talents.
Members inspire each other to greater heights of accomplishment.
Reinforces recognition and mutual support - reduces jealousy.
Leads to commitment to achieve desired outcomes.
Raises individual and team effectiveness and efficiency.
Can improve listening and feedback skills.
Team members learn to respect each other’s capabilities.
It is the leader’s responsibility to work toward maximizing the potential benefits of collaboration.