Collaboration is about people

James Robertson has some thoughts about collaboration – bringing up the point that it is first and foremost about people … or person-to-person interactions and dynamics.

 Some of my favorite lil’ gems …

It make no sense to roll out collaboration tools to the whole organisation. Collaboration takes place between people, and can’t be forced or created through the use of technology

Ohhh .. so this whole “let’s-require-everyone-to-use-Sharepoint-[or insert platform name here]-no-matter-the-size-or-scope-of-the-work” mandate is probably not a good one …

I get so tired of folks touting that this team or group or unit or department has such-and-such tool or technology and therefore they are a collaborative workplace. I say, BULL. No you’re not – you’re just pretending that you are.

Collaboration tools will fail when there is no opportunity for staff to actually collaborate

And because the culture of the organization doesn’t value collaboration, communication, cross-departmental work … when they don’t see tons of their people rushing to use this one piece of technology …. the conclusion is that this whole collaboration platform thing is just ‘not for us.’ (Yes, I’ve actually heard someone say that … Ugh!).

Collaboration spaces are not just about collecting documents within teams and business units … the tools should also help to build social networks within the organisation

This may seem self-evident to some … yet there is a real mis-defining or misunderstanding of collaboration – when I think they really mean coordination. Of course I want a workgroup to coordinate their efforts so that we don’t duplicate work unnecessarily. But coordination is not collaboration




About Rory

I make my home in the central part of the Garden State along with my family. When I'm not working as an Instructional Designer (focusing mostly on Web-Based learning ... and other eLearning technologies) or researching something, I'm found at home playing computer or video games. Among other things, I volunteer as a choir member and catechist for 8th graders at my parish.
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