Team Collaboration Techniques Used By Top LeadersReading Time: 4 minutes
In this article let us study the secrets of how top successful leaders collaborate to deliver high quality results. Collaboration is an art more than a science. If you are managing software projects and teams it is of utmost importance to master this skill. People are the single most important asset project managers have and it is through people, that good leaders deliver extraordinary results. Here are some secrets we developed at Global Management Mentors after observing many successful leaders.
None of us are as smart as all of us – Japanese Proverb
Learn The Art of Collaboration
Humans are primordial team players. In his much acclaimed book – Working With Emotional Intelligence, Daniel Goleman (Suggested reading) talks in detail on how collaboration is a critical skill for leaders. Darwin proposed that human groups who were ready to work together for a common good survived better and had more offspring than lone humans. The same applies in modern organizations. Software companies and startups operate in increasingly complex environments with teams,stakeholders & customers spread across the globe. So the need to have a strong collaboration is more than ever. Here are some competencies you can build to master this skill
- Encourage team behaviors of mutual respect,cooperation and helpfulness.
- Draw people into engaged and enthusiastic discussion on the subject
- Resist the temptation to be the team brain and let the team come up with ideas and solutions first. Research shows this approach produces greater results as it brings a diverse set of views and opinions to the solution
- Promote cooperative behavior
- Lead by example
Understand The Group Mind & Group IQ
To successfully deliver a software product or a project requires numerous heads to come together. These range from customers, technologists, programmers, testers to managers. In today’s world of information explosion and a proliferation of technology options no one person can have all the information. We are increasingly dependent on the group mind than ever before. Research has numerous examples to prove that the group mind is far more intelligent than the individual mind. Daniel in his book quotes that “lubricating the mechanisms of the group mind so that in can think and act brilliantly demands emotional intelligence”
Successful leaders are someone who can go beyond the facts. They understand the team dynamics, the effect of collective minds and the power of collaboration. They inspire teams to work towards a common goal. Research proves that when teams collaborate, a few high IQ people can inspire and transmit the energy to the others in the team resulting in a multiplicative end result and not simply an addition of the each IQ in the team. The group IQ reaches exponential levels in this kind of an environment.
Be Adept At Building Bonds
At Global Management Mentors we observed another secret factor. Successful top leaders are good at nurturing instrumental relationships.They painstakingly work towards reaching out to people and building strong win-win relationships based on mutual trust and benefit. This is to say that they have strong social intelligence. Building lasting bonds helps a leader build strong networks of knowledge and information. He can gain access to this network every time it is needed.Research has shown that highly effective managers are adept at building such connections based on goodwill and trust. New managers must especially focus on this area.
Here are some competencies you should build in this area
- Always be ready to offer help and build genuine relationships and friendships
- Seek out mutually beneficial relationships and stay engaged
- Lasting relationships are based on physiological proximity of trust, mutual help and genuineness
Practice The Art Of Networking
Building on the practices you have learnt above the final most important skill we have seen successful leader adopt is the art of networking. Wikipedia defines Networking is a socioeconomic business activity by which business people and entrepreneurs meet to form business relationships and to recognize, create, or act upon business opportunities, share information and seek potential partners for ventures. Leaders and project managers must network extensively to seek opportunities for growth and expansion. It is through these networks and human connections that people get to be known for their capabilities.
We have noticed that good leaders build relationships with a purpose and motive unlike normal personal friendships. They often combine personal and business meetings to build connections and networks through these interactions. They strive to balance their critical tasks with carefully chosen favors & building goodwill selectively with people who can become critical sources in future.
“Who you allow into the circle of your life will make the difference in the quality of your life.” – Zen Quote
In conclusion we would like to say that new managers and seasoned leaders must consciously practice the art of collaboration & networking and work actively in honing their skills around building long lasting relationships.
- Some cool tips on team management that you must read – read here
- Very informative article from HBR on the secrets of team work – read here
- Take a great course on Collaboration & Emotional Intelligence that we recommend from Udemy here
- Reach out to us at email@example.com for any advice, questions or feedback