Collaboration Technology – How to Make it Pay Off

Take a look at this image; what do you see? If you said a Parrot or something similar, you were wrong! It’s actually a person sitting on a tree trunk that has been artfully covered in body paint by the Dutch artist Johannes Stotter (if you can’t see it, look at the ‘beak’, it’s the person’s left hand painted white).

 This image is like collaboration; there is more to it than meets the eye.

 collaboration technology

Collaboration technology – Enterprise Social Networking (ESN) software like Yammer and Slack – haven’t yet created highly collaborative organizations as promised. To find out why, look here.

Collaboration is a behaviour, not a technology, and if we want people to change their behaviour, there is leadership work to be done before the technology can make a contribution.Like what? Take a look at this Infographic to find out.

The good news is that in situations where the benefits of collaboration outweigh the costs, and with some focused leadership and carefully selected technology, collaboration can pay dividends.

If your organization is taking the collaboration route, you will find the checklist below very handy – using it will save you and your colleague’s hundreds of collected hours of wasted time, and loads of unnecessary stress, not to mention thousands of $’s. Once the things on the checklist are in place, collaboration technology can start to deliver on its value proposition.

How to use the checklist

Take a look at the following and check those that you have already in place. The more check marks you have; the more likely that it is that the collaboration will be a success.

  1. We have a clear goal that we have all agreed upon and are motivated to achieve.

  2. We have agreed upon a way of working together (who does what and how we will collaborate) to achieve our goal.

  3. Have you asked and answered the question: ‘What could get in the way of us collaborating effectively?’

  4. Do you have one person with ultimate leadership responsibility who is happy to be accountable for success i.e. does whatever it takes to ensure that the goal is achieved?

  5. Is there some personal benefit to be gained by each team member through participating in this collaborative venture?

  6. Given the other priorities of the team members; do you each have enough time available to do a good job on this project?

  7. Will the team members most likely receive some form of recognition for taking part in this collaborative project i.e. for taking part (Not just for succeeding)?

  8. Is there at least one incentive (a thing that motivates or encourages) in place to help team members remain committed to the project if and when there are setbacks?

  9. Have you agreed upon some ‘communication guidelines’? What’s in and what’s out with respect to electronic communication.

  10. Do you all have access to one communication platform that you have agreed to use for the project? E.g. Jostle, Yammer, Jive, etc

It is worth doing whatever it takes to get eight or more check marks; each of the above has the potential to improve significantly the prospects for success.

If all the ten factors are in place, you have an 80%, or higher likelihood of success.

If you want a pdf version of the checklist click here –  pdf

UAS helps small and mid-sized enterprises to ‘move along the technology adoption curve’ and get the business results, and ROI expected from investments in Enterprise Resource Planning products such as CRM, SharePoint or SaaS products like Office 365. We provide solutions that increase the speed and level of end user adoption (end user adoption = the extent to which people use new software or IT Systems effectively).


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