Lacking Cross-Team Collaboration? Do This.

Tania Braukamper 
Tania Braukamper 

March 7, 2022

Lacking Cross-Team Collaboration? Do This.

On a scale of 1-10, how collaborative are teams across your organization?

At the top end of the scale, ideas flow and resources are freely shared.

And this is a good thing. 

Cross-team collaboration creates new synapses in the brain of the organization.  

It expands possibilities, strengthens connections, and drives innovation. 

Without it, you face the dreaded silo effect. 😬

Of course, a degree of segmentation is necessary. That’s why effective cross-team collaboration is all about respecting each team’s uniqueness while giving them the tools and encouragement they need to leverage the strengths of their peers. 

Here’s our approach.

❓ The Problem: 

Silos often happen because: 

  • People don’t know each other and feel awkward to reach out.
  • People don’t know what other teams do, so have no idea how to collaborate.
  • Collaboration is framed in the wrong way – people get defensive because they don’t want to sacrifice autonomy or give up resources.
  • There’s a lack of collaboration examples and success cases. 

🌊 The Consequences: 

Without cross-team collaboration, companies miss out on a wealth of opportunities to innovate and flourish.

Worse than that, it can lead to a situation where the parts aren’t acting in the interest of the whole. 

✅ The Solution:

As usual, we believe in a holistic approach to solving the problem. That means tackling it by changing behaviors at both a leadership and individual level. 

Skoach coaches leaders and team members through activities like:

  • Curious coffee: schedule a coffee with someone you don’t know and ask them a set of three “get-to-know-you” questions.
  • Collaboration pivots: find one person in each team that can be your "go-to" when you need any help from that team.
  • Recognize team players: when someone is a star cross-collaborator, recognize them for it. This not only reinforces their behavior, but highlights their example to others.

Some strategies we use for managers specifically:

  • PR your team’s work: brag (gracefully) about what your team does and how they could help someone else.
  • Set the expectation to collaborate: highlight the importance of cross-team collaboration and communicate what it is you want your team to do.

💬 Quote

"The challenges helped foster more interaction with our colleagues and develop empathy." — a Skoach user after getting challenges about feedback.

🤔 Something To Think About:

What can you do to PR your team's work and show how it can help others?
Looking for the most-action oriented engagement assessment tool?
Get started today or reach out for more information about our team coach.


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