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Monday, December 16, 2013

Collaboration: The Missing Ingredient to Transforming the Way We Work

Our business cultures reflect the core values and beliefs that drive our actions and behaviors and influence our relationships, both internally and with our customers. The culture of a workplace shows up in powerful ways in terms of commitment, quality, and productivity, loyalty, satisfaction, and pride. It creates the standards, work style, and expectations by which our companies are defined. Our job is to engage that culture so that its best values emerge and flourish.

The organization as a whole must create a shared cultural framework that will be powerful enough to replace hierarchy. That framework must not merely be a program or technique or a sophisticated new way to manipulate the future. On the contrary, it must be based on fundamental principles, enhance the stability of workplace relationships, help define the new covenant, and enable managers to use common sense in making business decisions.

In my experience there are seven core values that define the basis for effective work relationships:

  • Respect for people
  • Honor and integrity
  • Ownership and alignment
  • Consensus
  • Full responsibility and accountability
  • Trust
  • Recognition and growth
Collaboration is a principle-based process of working together, which produces trust, integrity, and breakthrough results by building true consensus, ownership, and alignment in all aspects of the organization. Put another way, collaboration is the way people naturally want to work. It is a way of life that enables us to meet our fundamental needs for self-esteem and mutual respect in the workplace. This principle provides the basis for significant and permanent change – for people as well as for organizations.

Put simply, collaboration is the missing ingredient to transforming the way we work.

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