How Communication and Collaboration Bring Success to Your Auburn Hills, MI Small Business
At its best, collaboration yields better results than going it alone. Two (or more) heads are often better than one, after all. But what happens when your team isn't working together as efficiently as you'd like? Whether it's a lack of communication, too much micromanaging, or something else entirely, there are a few key ways to get your team collaborating like never before. Read on to learn more with these tips from the Auburn Hills Chamber of Commerce.
Create an Open Environment
One of the best ways to encourage collaboration is to create an environment where people feel comfortable sharing their ideas. That means being open to hearing new perspectives and being willing to change course if a better idea comes along. It also means regular check-ins and updates so everyone knows what's going on and how they can help. Employees need to know what's happening around the company to get context about where things are going. Finally, it means establishing ground rules for how decisions will be made so no one feels like their input is being ignored.
Don't Let Micromanagement Take Over
You can't do everything yourself. Not only is it impossible to be an expert in every area of your business, but micromanaging will also prevent your employees from developing their own skills and abilities. When you micromanage, you send the message that you're not confident your employees can do their jobs properly. This can lead to frustration and resentment, and it can eventually result in high turnover rates. Instead of micromanaging, try to focus on setting clear goals and expectations for your employees. Then, step back and let them take care of the rest.
Make Feedback a Regular Occurrence
Feedback is essential to your success. It can help you to identify areas that need improvement and make necessary changes to your product or service. Feedback can also help you to understand what your employees need, and how they feel about your business. However, Buffer reminds us that feedback is not always easy to take. You may feel defensive or even hurt when you receive negative feedback. But it is important to remember that feedback is a gift, not a criticism. It is an opportunity to learn, and ultimately make your business more successful. So make sure to ask for feedback, and then take it graciously. Be thoughtful and direct in the feedback you offer to your team, and offer to brainstorm possible solutions if one isn't obvious.
Allow Teams to Collaborate
In many organizations, different departments or teams operate in vaults with little interaction apart from the occasional meeting or email exchange. This can lead to feelings of isolation and resentment, neither of which are conducive to collaboration. To avoid this issue, try to create opportunities for cross-team collaboration whenever possible. For example, you could pair up teams for joint projects or create working groups that meet on a regular basis to share ideas and best practices. By breaking down these barriers, you'll pave the way for greater collaboration across your entire organization.
Use Collaborative Online Tools
There are lots of great online tools that can help small businesses improve communication and collaboration such as Basecamp and Dropbox Paper. These tools make it easy for team members to stay connected and share ideas regardless of location or time zone. Working with different departments can also mean using different file types, so find an online converter for your teams. To convert doc to PDF, simply add your file to the drop zone and the tool will do the rest. Then everyone has a stable file type that they can access on any device.
Collaborative tools also provide a central repository for documents and files so everyone always has access to the latest version. And best of all? They're usually free or very reasonably priced!
Be Hands Off in the Right Ways
There are many benefits to encouraging collaboration within a small business including improved results, increased creativity, and happier employees. If you're looking for ways to improve communication and collaboration within your organization, give your team the tools and permission to show their strengths, and get ready to see them shine. You’ll be glad you did.
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