Gaining Collaborator power: Offering Differentiation; Collaborator size, Strategic importance, Switching costs

24/12/2021 0 By indiafreenotes

Collaboration means working together with one or more people to complete a project or task or develop ideas or processes. In the workplace, collaboration occurs when two or more people work together towards a common goal that benefits the team or company. Workplace collaboration requires interpersonal skills, communication skills, knowledge sharing and strategy, and can occur in a traditional office or between members of a virtual team.

Working as a team not only drives greater productivity, but it also fosters healthy relationships between employees. Often, when employees work together they’re more effective and efficient than those who attempt to manage the same projects alone. Successfully collaborating with your coworkers can also increase your motivation and level of engagement at work. Additionally, sharing ideas and brainstorming is helpful for developing unique solutions to complex challenges. There are many ways to collaborate effectively at work, and the skills and techniques you rely on when you collaborate can lead to greater efficiency and success.

Offering Differentiation

One of the most important aspects of collaborating well is being open to and accepting of new ideas. When people get in that meeting room to discuss a project, each coming from a different perspective and area of expertise, there’s inevitably going to be a flurry of ideas on the table about how to proceed ideas that’ll be unfamiliar, new, exciting, and possibly difficult to understand.

People who are naturally curious will thrive in this kind of environment, but those who are a little more resistant to new ideas could potentially stall or otherwise disrupt the project before it even gets started. And because curiosity and open-mindedness are among the fundamental building blocks of collaboration, leaders will need to find ways to encourage them in their people.

Collaborator size

Essentially, collaboration occurs when two or more people work together to produce or create something. This can happen either in person or virtually, thanks to the many communication tools and cloud-based programs that are created for this very purpose.

While there are many different ways to create and foster a collaborative workplace, the most successful work environments typically have some important features in common. They’re places where employees feel seen, heard, and safe to share their thoughts. They run efficient meetings and work sessions. They have standardized systems and collaboration processes in place. Their teams understand the importance of healthy communication.

A collaborative team is a slightly different version of a traditional team because its members have differing skill sets. Although the members have varying areas of expertise, they still share similar goals, resources, and leadership. With their diverse set of specialized skills, they should be able to problem-solve as a group. The imagery of pulling the rope only applies when you rewind to the group who settled on pulling the rope in the first place. This group may have had an engineer explaining the mechanism of rope-pulling, a foreman deciding who would be on the rope-pulling team, and countless others defining their roles and using their expertise to solve the problem. For more information on how collaboration can vastly improve your company, see How Workplace Collaboration Can Change Your Company.

Collaborative leaders can span the scope of your business by engaging people outside of their direct control and getting them to work as a team with a common goal. When businesses talk about collaborative leadership, they mean distributed organizational structures that are either cross-unit, cross-functional, or cross-organization. These groups get employees at all levels with a stake in the outcome. This strategy is more about facilitating the group effort than about making decisions for the group. In other words, a collaborative leader leads the group’s process, not the group itself.

Another type of collaborative leadership involves performing inside an organization. This occurs when leadership shifts from person to person, based on the problem to be solved. Leadership then becomes the collaborative effort.

Therefore, when we talk about collaboration itself, we are talking about problem-solving with a group of people with different skillsets. However, what makes this type of group work compelling and successful can also make it fail. Different skill sets often come attached to people who think differently from each other, which can make communication among them difficult. Moreover, they frequently possess different priorities, which can cause surges of disagreement.

A big part of collaboration is coordination. Coordination is about achieving efficiency and about telling participants how and when they must act. This concept is similar to collaboration and teamwork because its goals are the same. If we return to our rope-pulling image, we see coordination as someone first organizing different groups and activities individually, with each group performing their own aspects of the work. It involves the group that brings the rope, the one that sets up the rope, the one that makes sure the ground is solid enough to stand on, and the one that pulls the rope. When these four groups have already completed their work independently, the coordinating person accomplishes the rope-pulling.

Strategic importance

Another extremely important component of collaboration is being able to think long-term and envision the end-result of your collaborative work. Collaboration is all about working towards a common goal or shared purpose and recognizing how your contributions fit into that goal. For employees who want to improve their collaboration skills, this means gaining an understanding of a project’s scope and everyone’s role in it. The more you know about the focus of a given project, the better equipped you’ll be to make it happen. For leaders, you’ll need to adequately explain the “why” of a project.

Switching costs

Being able to maintain a loyal customer base has always been a major concern for businesses all around the word. With so many choices of suppliers and distributors, customers are also faced with a problem within that concern.  There are many different methods and strategies businesses use to maintain their customer base. Some of these methods came come in the form of customer loyalty reward programs such as: rewards points, coupons, discounts, etc. Other methods tactics used to retain current customers may even look like a form of punishment. A very good example of this is that of the cellular phone companies. These companies get the customers to apply for a contract for 2 years and penalize them for several hundred dollars if the customer were to cancel the contract before the end of term. With so many options to choose from, consumers are faced with the problem of switching costs.

By definition, switching costs are costs that occur when switching suppliers, brands, products, or into a new marketplace. Usually, the higher these costs are, the harder it is to perform the switch. Most of the time, these costs occur in the form of monetary decisions. For consumers, some examples of these costs could be the cost of new equipment, the cost to remove and install new equipment, opportunity costs, or the cost of training to use the new product. However, other costs that may incur are not about monetary costs, but rather psychological or emotional costs. Some examples of this would the lost of time, cognitive effort, aversion loss. First, this is due to the fact that most people are very sensitive to advantages and disadvantages to any change from the status quo. Secondly, everyone has a different reference point (a teenager may have different interests than that of their grandparents). Lastly, the pain of giving up a benefit is usually greater than gaining a new one.  If a person must experience pain when exhibiting switcihing suppliers, they will be less likely to switch. For example, although a person may be extreme dissatisfied with their current physician, switching to another physician would require that person to transfer all medical records, insurance, and other miscellaneous paperwork.  Also, they must also take the time to trust the new doctor with their medical needs. In other words, a person would need to be extremely dissatisfied to switch their supplier even if the alternative is superior.