Collaboration Tools: How to Encourage Employees to Share More?
Gone are the days when lone geniuses tap the opportunities and generate innovative ideas.
Today, the primary focus is on team effort and collaboration. There is an ample number of benefits of a collaborative workplace like increased productivity, employee satisfaction, better innovation, improved business processes, and much more.
Creating a collaborative and cohesive workplace helps you achieve innovative outputs in the organization and higher innovation levels lead to better productivity and business growth. As a result, the implementation of office 365 collaborative tools is much required for every business to leverage the talent of its employees.
Why businesses need to encourage employees to share and collaborate more in the organization:
1. Better problem-solving
Everyone faces a different type of problems that creates a vast talent pool in the organization. There is an endless amount of knowledge available in the organization, but the problem is with the sharing of knowledge. Employees need to share to gain group benefits. Let’s say you have solved a problem but didn’t share it with anyone. When any of your team members struggle with a similar problem, they must reinvent the wheels all over again. Sharing knowledge does not limit your success but spreads it across the organization.
Sharing through employee collaboration tools makes people articulate and get clarity about their skills and competencies. When you discuss and collaborate in the organization, it gives you a glimpse of your weaknesses and strengths. The self-analysis leads to better work as the gaps of different people are plugged in together for team success.
3. Shows a bigger picture
We are living in the age of data and information overload where everyone is surrounded by information, announcements, newsletters, minutes of the meeting, and more. And it is an everyday challenge for leaders and managers to sort important messages. So, the employees have all the required information but don’t know how to put it in the right place.
Using office 365 collaboration tools for business drastically improves the engagement of employees in various ways. Another benefit of using collaborative tools is that connects the information appropriately so that the employees need not put a jigsaw puzzle together. It gets easier for them to be part of the organization and understand the bigger picture.
Let’s understand 7 ways to encourage employees to share more.
1. Learning new things
When people tend to collaborate in the organization, they automatically learn new things from each other. The continuous learning culture is encouraged through various sources and supports the overall process of employee collaboration and learning across the organization. This is one of the most important reasons to encourage collaboration among employees as it enhances their capacities to grow beyond their comfort zones and take the organization to new heights.
Why Collaboration is important?
2. Bringing people for problem-solving sessions
Collaboration not only adds value for the employees but also helps the company to solve many challenging problems. For the same reason, organizations are bringing people to brainstorm on issues and leverage diverse perspectives to come up with beneficial business ideas.
To encourage teamwork and solve business challenges while encouraging innovation culture, many organizations host innovation challenges. It is surely a great idea to encourage collaboration at the workplace as it leverages the overall organizational network to collaborate and answer common questions. The collaboration initiatives help in creating a knowledge-sharing culture. For example, the ideas of employees can be recorded in the log of the internal platform of the company and reviewed to select the challenge winner.
Conducting weekly or monthly brainstorming sessions is also helpful to create a knowledge-sharing culture. Another way is to build a collaborative team comprising of volunteers from different departments. It helps in keeping the fresh ideas flowing and the output of these sessions is reviewed and presented to senior management by a supervisor. The suitable collaborative tool for business helps you log the ideas, information of these meetings, track the progress on tasks, resource allocation, and much more.
3. Prioritize the voice of employees
If you are considering enhancing collaboration, it is very important to listen to the voice of employees and make them a part of the decision-making process from the initial stage. Listening to their needs, feedback, recommendations is a must to excel in the modern-day workplace. A feedback system is a fundamental need for collaborative and inclusive company culture.
The benefits of collaborative tools are that you can set up feedback loops at the team and company levels to get actionable business insights. The meeting point can be a mix of digital and face-to-face communications to manage the gamut of preferences of employees. Using collaborative tools can provide real-time insights into the perceptions of employees and help you get the company culture in place. You can also use pulse surveys through a quick survey tool and build a steady feedback pipeline. Listening to the voice of employees boost their engagement levels, productivity, and ultimately, levels up the business growth and revenues.
4. Promote knowledge sharing of different forms
Not everyone is an expert in public speaking or a professional speaker as many people do not feel confident in sharing their work in front of everyone in the organization. The ultimate goal of knowledge-sharing platforms is to include everyone and spread communication in a multitude of ways. With this platform, you can make every employee comfortable and let them share information across the company.
Here are some ways to ensure sharing culture:
- Set a standard time for face-to-face collaboration of employees. The team members who are already comfortable in the environment will have the opportunity to express new ideas and people who are shyer will get good practice.
- Set a content sharing plan, whether it is a weekly or monthly schedule. It will ensure that valuable knowledge is shared and documented for future reference.
- Schedule off-site meetings like happy hour office, team meeting at a café or alike. The employees will feel refreshed in a new space and can collaborate in better ways.
5. Highlight the employee strengths
Most of the employees quit their jobs if they feel unappreciated. This scenario is getting more common for millennials, especially when their unique skills are not being used and their value is not recognized in the organization.
It is very important for a team that each member brings their unique skills to the table. And as an employer, you must have also recruited employees with specific strengths. So, why not highlight or appreciate them? Always ensure that you emphasize them in a collaborative environment and build their strengths even better. A workplace collaboration tool can spotlight the strengths of your employees and get them in limelight. Ultimately, it makes the employees feel valued and put the best of their efforts into the organization.
6. Create a supportive and conducive environment
Are you rewarding employees for their performance?
If yes, great…!!
It helps in motivating the employees to perform better but at the same time, it is vital to encourage employees to share and communicate with the team. There is an end number of reasons why collaboration is required to achieve success. Of course, there is nothing wrong with rewarding the individual performance of employees, but it is very crucial to reward teamwork. A supportive environment means the availability of training and education resources for employees and evangelists in the organization. Some companies also hire collaboration specialists to help employees work as a team and achieve desired results.
7. Integrate collaboration into the routine workflow
Collaboration should never be treated as additional work for the employees, but it should be well integrated into the regular workflow and fit naturally in the routine. Creating the values of collaboration is not a very difficult job. The only requirement is to put the right idea in the right place. For example, the employees can access the enterprise and applications through a collaboration tool for business instead of using multiple usernames and passwords.
For example, a telecommunications company, TELSUS in Canada has integrated collaboration into the core workflow of their employees by creating central navigation access. It allows the employees to access all their technologies via a central application.
Get the most suitable knowledge-sharing platform for your organization
Have you found yourself answering the same question repeatedly? Do you spend a maximum of your work time searching through Google Docs or Dropbox for the required content?
The right knowledge-sharing platform will restraint you from these tedious tasks and allow you to get answers to your questions, store and search content in real-time, locate subject matter experts, streamline the training process, encourage employees to contribute ideas. Organizations must take advantage of modern collaboration tools and build a knowledge-sharing culture.
Use these tips as a launchpad to maximize the impact of every employee and their valuable contribution. Still not sure why to use office 365 collaboration tools for knowledge sharing in your organization? Schedule a DEMO to know how BizPortals365 can fulfill all your knowledge-sharing needs and become the best collaboration tool for your business?