A model for collaboration
If you work with people from different cultures or backgrounds then this collaboration model may be of help.
Everyone has their own way, and experiences, of working together. Yet when we collaborate with people of different backgrounds how effectively are we doing so? This easy-to-use model helps shine some light on the process…
The Collaboration Model explained
Imagine you are assigned to a different country with your company. You have been tasked with getting the best out of the team there and are keen to do just that… how do you prepare?
Chances are, you may read a book about the customs, manners and maybe even working styles of people there – their ‘culture’ if you like. And this will stand you in good stead… up to a point. It may help you avoid the many pitfalls of doing business. But will it enable you get the best from your team? This is where the Collaboration Model (see below) can help – have a look. (You can download a pdf of the Collaboration Model here)
You’ll see there are three factors at play in motivating excellence from an individual wherever they are – Culture, Personality (Person in the graphic) and Talent.
You may be able to collaborate effectively culturally with your colleague by avoiding or overcoming cultural barriers – however, that does not mean you will get the best out of them as individuals. To do this, you will need to work out their individual personalities, and, most importantly of all, understand their talents and get them into roles that maximises those talents. Here’s how you can do just that…
Collaborating across cultures
The first factor of collaboration is on a cultural level. By respecting the set of norms and common behaviours that an individual is culturally a part of, you can reduce the chances of conflict and anti-productive clashes that can happen. (Check out Cross-Cultural Collaboration for a great way to do this).
But many local managers can do this naturally – and it doesn’t lead you getting the best out of the individual. At best, you can ‘get along’, but really only on a surface level. In order to ‘get along’ on a personal level, and begin to get the best out of the individual, you need to collaborate with his or her personality.
Collaborating on a personal level
This is where being able to identify and connect with the individual’s personality really helps. Talent Technologies’ training programme Personality Factor makes this skill super easy, using the MBTI model.
If you can figure out an individual’s personality quickly, it helps you avoid making mistakes on a personal level, and more importantly gives you clues as to the motivational drivers that person has. We start moving, on the scale at the bottom of the Collaboration Model, from avoiding resistance to igniting motivation. But to really make things click into gear, we need to connect on an even deeper level…
Collaborating by harnessing an individual’s Talent
The ‘master key’ of motivation, as discovered by numerous global engagement studies and discussed in a previous post here, is identifying an individual’s Talent, and then making the ‘Talent-Task connection’ – making sure the work you give a person plays to his or her strengths.
This happens only rarely in organisations and most people are still clueless as to what Talent really is.
This ‘talent blindness’ really impacts results and is often the cause of poor collaboration between individuals in the end. It happens when someone keeps giving you a job you hate doing, you are really not good at, and which you often take on reluctantly.
It’s this single skill that is the source for the greatest motivator known to man – discovering what a person can do best, then playing him or her to that strength (check out Talent Factor if you would like to find out more).
A brief word about Risk
Risk is a small word with a big impact. At worst it holds us back from discovering, trying our best, and going for excellence.
The journey towards effective collaboration is one where, the deeper you go into understanding an individual, the more risks you necessarily need to take on that discovery process.
But the rewards far outweigh the risks themselves. Don’t take the risk and your colleagues will be disengaged before long. Take the risk and you will unlock the power of the ‘talent multiplier’ and the motivation and enhanced performance that comes with that.
To collaborate more effectively, just do this…
If you want to work more effectively on a group and individual level and get better results, have a look at the three programmes mentioned above: Cross-Cultural Collaboration, Personality Factor and Talent Factor. Or drop us a line via our form here for more details.
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