How to encourage collaboration skills in the workplace
“Individual commitment to a group effort – that is what makes a team work, a company work, a society work, a civilisation work.” Vince Lombardi
There’s plenty of clichés out there about the importance of teamwork (‘There’s no I in TEAM’, ‘Together Everyone Achieves More’, etc.), but seriously, they’re not wrong! A workplace relies on individuals working together, using collaboration skills to succeed. How many businesses do you know that have reached the dizzy heights of success single-handedly? Now we’ve established collaboration skills are a must, we’ve put together some ways to encourage collaborative working.
How many are you implementing in your workplace?
Play to people’s strengths
It goes without saying – collaboration starts with the individual. If a person’s in a role that doesn’t suit them and fails to play to their strengths, they won’t be invested, and the team dynamic will suffer as a result. You can guess the potential impact this could have on the business. Therefore, it’s vital that individuals are in a role where they can utilise their skillset and feel empowered doing so. Plus, if colleagues know each other’s strengths, they’re more likely to look to each other for support, instead of feeling threatened by one another. Naturally, this encourages further collaboration – a win-win.
As specialist recruiters to the financial technology (FinTech) sector, we need to be able to quickly recognise the strengths in our candidates, so we match them with the right client. Such a niche market can make it a challenge to find the right person, but fortunately, we know our market like the back of our hand(s)!
Establishing team goals encourages productivity and team spirit. With focus, individuals can get down to the task in-hand, clear about what they need to do to meet the goal (provided goals are achievable – unrealistic goals will only have the opposite effect). While the setting of goals is important, it’s just as important to review the outcome so individuals can see how their input has contributed to the success of the team. This encourages collaboration skills because people experience the power of working together. Even if an outcome is not the desired one, the team can work together to rectify it.
Similarly, at System RS, we take the time to establish the goals of our clients – not only their technical goals but also the wider business. With this knowledge, we can create a strategy to ensure the right candidates are recruited. The same approach stands for establishing candidates’ goals.
Communication goes a long way. It’s about clarity. An individual who knows what’s expected of them, with defined roles and responsibilities, will be confident and motivated to meet their goals. This encourages collaboration, as the team work efficiently without uncertainty about who does what. Again, it’s the realisation that working together gets results.
Working in the FinTech market, we’re faced with a variety of roles to fill, from Head of IT Security, to Java Systems Architect, and even C#.Net, SQL Server Developer. Appreciating every client will have different requirements and expectations, we adapt the process to suit them – there’s no such thing as ‘one recruitment approach’ at System RS! Then we can get to work to find the right candidate.
The examples above are just the tip of the iceberg – there are various ways to encourage collaboration skills in the workplace. The key takeaway – businesses rely on collaboration to thrive. That includes us, working in partnership with candidates and clients, alike. Other ways to encourage collaboration skills? You may want to consider incentives, rewards, social events outside of work, and encouraging creativity and innovation. We’ll leave you to ponder.