Collaborate: There is Space for Everyone
“Is the ambition to reach to the top of the corporate pyramid preventing employees from collaborating effectively at workplace?”
Through my own experiences and my interactions with various professionals working in large corporations I have noticed some trends with respect to collaboration at workspace:
1. Collaboration: Just an eyewash?
A lot of people do not use effectively the internal channels for collaboration or knowledge sharing at their respective companies. In fact even if they are sharing posts/blogs internally it is just because they have certain incentives linked to it. Such as a better promotion or a better piece of the bell curve. Many are actually not doing it to create something better or of value. When I think about Collaboration, the first thing that comes to my mind is improvement.
Even the lamest webpage can be saved by collaboration. -Philip Greenspun
2. Sharing Selectively: Hoarding Information?
Sometimes people think that by holding back information at a particular instant will enable them to leverage the same at a later point of time. What they do not realize is that this information will actually become obsolete over time if not shared. Moreover employees need to understand that in this digital world the rate of exchange of information is really fast. Also someone else may be able to access the information from other channels. Hence active sharing of information or ideas can help you with the TTM (Time To Market) for your idea/product.
Share your knowledge. It’s a way to achieve immortality. -Dalai Lama
3. More than a CEO: Is there such a role?
Being ambitious was never meant to be a bad thing. In fact it is one of the traits that enables individuals/artists/scientists to come up with their best creations. However in the race to the top, people forget that there is no finish line. Every employee cannot be CEO. However every employee can be in a role where s/he brings value to an organization that is of an equal or greater value that a CEO may bring. Thereby it is important to place yourself in such roles. Moreover it is important for you to help the Senior Management identify and place you in such roles. One of the ways of doing this is via collaboration. The next point illustrates the same.
The man who has the largest capacity for work and thought is the man who is bound to succeed. -Henry Ford
4. The Right Role: Are you helping others identify you?
Collaboration can also help the employer understand your key strengths. Every employee’s potential is different and thus it is the organization’s responsibility to identify these qualities of its employee and use it effectively to implement its business plan. In addition to this there is a quintessential need to ensure that your key strengths are being portrayed to the management. As stated before, one of the best ways of doing this is via collaboration.
A man willing to work, and unable to find work, is perhaps the saddest sight that fortune’s inequality exhibits under this sun. -Thomas Carlyle
5. Is there space for everyone?
Yes! In today’s corporate environment there is enough space for everyone. You can do your thing. However to do so the following points need to be considered:
Having an “Ownership” mentality: Company Loses — You Lose!
You should be ready to take on additional responsibilities. Thus enabling you to customize your role better.
Don’t take ‘No’ for answer. Share your concerns with the management about your role or the company, if any.
Relentlessly try to improve. Improvement always creates space.
Thus collaborating and looking for improvement in every task we do at workplace is important. When we improve we create space. When we create space, we invent new things to fit into that new space. Thus collaboration, improvement and value creation can be interwoven to create an important fabric called “Work-Space”!
I hope you enjoyed the post. Please feel free to share your views and experiences in the comments below. Claps are always welcome!
The statements, views, or opinions expressed in this post represent my own views and not those of my employer. This article was originally published by me on my LinkedIn in Sep 2014.