Toward More Effective Collaboration

From Dave Pollard:

"Hierarchy, our cult of leadership, and the inflated egos of managers, combine to make collaboration in most businesses almost impossible.

Collaboration could be improved by (a) creating a lot more opportunities to practice it, (b) speaking out when supposedly or potentially collaborative activities aren't, and fixing them so they are, and (c) ousting the egos and outing the wallflowers in collaborative groups so participation is equal.

Caroline Allen, who lives and breathes this stuff, provides this additional wisdom:

Infrastructure -- support and facilitation services, coaching, technical resources -- helps to keep collaborative efforts from going off the rails.

Open communication and collegiality among participants, so that the work that needs to be done can be equitably apportioned, appreciated and respected, is essential to the process.

Diversity of process -- using different techniques to jump-start or enhance collaboration -- is as important to effective collaboration as diversity of people."