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Importance of collaborative work


"The key to teamwork is to learn a role, accept a role, and strive to become excellent at playing it." - Pat Riley

What are the challenges and benefits of collaborative work in today's world? In 2021, a highly interesting article published on Forbes.fr discussed collaborative work and what managers can implement to impact operational management.

However, what is applicable in the case of managers, wouldn't it also be applicable to subordinate teams? A team can be defined as a unit formed by managers that can become a group, where individuals are required to work together, rather than a team where each member is actively involved. For them to feel a sense of belonging to a team, they need to feel connected by a common duty or mission, achieving a sense of full belonging.

We won't delve into sociological definitions or intricacies of the "team" here, as within this lies phenomena of leadership within a unit, where a team member tends to stand out, or conversely, the unit exerts a form of conformity on all members. The latter scenario implies that pressure can be exerted on team members due to a lack of free will. Therefore, the assumption here is that the manager must intervene to ensure group balance and regulate actions in the interest of the company and its employees.

Apart from the roles defined by employment contracts that determine a set of tasks and a general course of action, considering a team implies a combination of individualities, resulting in a variety of experiences and skill domains. It's precisely the expectation that a team with diverse skills can bring each individual's expertise to the service of the company. However, in practice, the individualization of tasks and a lack of communication often hinder optimization.

In management, delegation is a key to team cohesion, but to what extent is it efficient in terms of quantifiable results? The functioning of a point of sale often requires empowering employees and assigning them recurring tasks (e.g., stock management, merchandising, supplies management, etc.), which can serve as motivation factors. Conversely, these sometimes repetitive and individual tasks are often perceived as unstimulating or even intellectually impoverishing. The multiplication of tasks leads to a dispersion of skills.

On the other hand, collaborative work enables the pooling of skills and better communication. Regardless of the assigned task, and provided the manager serves as a safeguard, engages the team, and allows a degree of freedom from execution to completion, discussions have been carried out collectively. This can lead to more optimal solutions for the company and the expression of individual talents.

The sustainability of these collaborative reflections is a major asset as it affects several areas:

  • Communication: Ideas and opinions are clearly identified.

  • Team spirit: It catalyzes employees and encourages mutual assistance.

  • Managerial: Provides multiple motivation triggers.

  • Performance: Involvement of everyone in achieving objectives.

  • Customer relations: Team cohesion generates a positive ambiance felt by the customer.

Henry Ford once said, "Coming together is a beginning, staying together is progress, working together is success." It appears that we have all the keys to success within our reach, as long as we know how to work together. Interestingly, active communication and the recognition of skills seem to be beneficial to companies that practice them.

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