How to Integrate Executive Team Collaboration Into Your Workplace
As today’s business environment grows increasingly complex, more executive teams are turning to collaboration to empower their teams and drive best practices throughout their organization.
According to a recent survey by Deloitte, 51% of respondents rated C-suite collaboration as one of the most important issues facing leadership teams today. That being said, if an organization is seeking longevity and growth, its leaders must be aligned and working closely together.
But what exactly is collaborative leadership? Simply put, it means that leadership team members are open and transparent in the work that they do. When leaders are committed to building a collaborative culture, they’re able to nurture environments where knowledge sharing and ownership are front and center. This openness creates a shared vision, and most importantly, clarity across an organization.
Leading By Example
As the workforce evolves, leadership best practices and communication styles need to evolve, too. It’s not enough for leaders to encourage their teams to seek out collaborative opportunities — executive teams need to lead by example.
All too often, executive teams are plagued by ineffective communication practices simply because it’s the way they’ve always worked. Lack of accountability, working in silos, or failing to delegate tasks are just a few of the issues commonly seen within the C-suite.
Yet, if leaders make a more concerted effort to work openly and transparently, they will have better opportunity to inspire the same behaviors among their teams. By making noticeable adjustments to their communication workflows, executives create a space where their staff is actively inspired to do the same.
Putting It Into Action
While integrating collaborative practices into your workflow might feel like a big leap, new technologies are available to ease the burden on executive teams. Technologies that support collaborative practices may include:
- Personal document access from anywhere, at anytime. This practice encourages executives to share knowledge and expertise across all levels of an organization. A centralized hub for your personal files encourages easy accessibility from mobile and desktop devices. By using a tool like OneDrive, you can author documents and data and simply share a link that allows for real-time collaboration with multiple people at once. Furthermore, integrating shared files into your workflow eliminates the redundancy (and secrecy) of emailing files.
- Real-time Chat platforms. Messaging can be integrated into your executive collaboration strategy to facilitate open and transparent communication. This is an important tool for promoting connectivity among cross-functional teams. Tools like Microsoft Teams provide a platform for real time communication, screen sharing, and video conferencing.
- Shared calendars. When executive teams demonstrate that they’re accountable to their commitments, employees will follow suit. Eliminating secrecy within the executive group builds a culture of trust and transparency.
- Intranet platforms. Depending on an organization’s size, intranet solutions are a great way for executive teams to share consistent and effective messaging. A searchable communication portal creates a library that lives far beyond any one person or email.
Of course, the use of these modern communication tools should never replace more traditional collaborative practices like in-person meetings. Instead, by utilizing a mix of different communication methods, executive team members are more likely to implement workflows that generate real results for their organizations.
Sometimes, making these changes can seem outright overwhelming. We recommend piloting just one or two of these tactics among your executive team to gain comfort and familiarity with these concepts. Making just a couple of changes at a time creates a compound effect that nurtures an environment where collaboration can thrive.