Leaders who build collaboration will free up their time for more important work.

In my new e-book, Activate: 15 Steps to Profitable Strategy Execution, I discuss creating transformational capacity and galvanizing transformational leaders. One assessment we perform is to evaluate cultural elements of the organization.

One cultural element we evaluate is hierarchical adherence, or how much we rely on structure versus collaboration. Over time, organizations have put less emphasis on organizational structure than they have building a culture of collaboration. Organizations that collaborate more work across silos, tend to be self-directed, have distributed decision-making, enjoy greater autonomy, and generally resolve cross- functional dysfunction faster. All this leads to greater innovation and ultimately better customer service.

As a result of COVID-19, organizations can develop a collaborative culture and reduce dependence on hierarchy. Reducing layers and physical barriers in the workplace has given employees an opportunity to reach out differently to gather information and make their own decisions. Leaders, busy with other disruptions resulting from the pandemic, have come to depend on employees making decisions for themselves.

One simple example is a client who has asked her employees to stop copying her on every email. When her organization first entered the shutdown, employees were copying her more and more on emails. She has coached them to resolve their own issues and has advised them that it’s better to ask forgiveness than permission. This has sped up the workflow process for her – and her team.

Call to action: if you haven’t already, seize this opportunity to build greater collaboration amongst your work force. You can do this by coaching your team to make their own decisions without your intervention and inspire dialogue across functions. Your role is to facilitate the dialogue, not necessarily to drive it. This serves to galvanize your leadership team.

I’d love to hear your thoughts on this article. Please go out to LinkedIn to add your comments.

Dedicated to your profitable transformation,

Steve

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