101+ Ideas to Improve Team Collaboration
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101+ Ideas to Improve Team Collaboration

About the Book

We all fear the unhappy team collaboration in our work. The team where no one cooperates, and only a few people do the real work, as the work of others is always of poor quality. There are solutions to these challenges.

Some people worry about what happens if the team messes up the work. They fear that they might do it 'wrong', at poor quality, or are too slow to finish. The person here has many options to ensure that it is 'done correctly', at the right level of quality, and is done on time. They can get feedback early by prioritising the work, which is organised in 'slices'. They can show others the finished 'slices' to confirm that it is done to the right standard. By prioritising it, they also ensure that it is done on time.

Other people worry that the team lacks the skills required to do the work. They fear that learning new skills will take too long, and cause issues. The team can do a number of things to resolve this. They can do all work either in pairs, or with everyone together so that no one is left to learn on their own. This means everyone always has someone to ask for help, and they all upskill each other as they learn their new skills. In addition, the team can set aside time to learn together, and to then use that knowledge to do small pieces of the work as tests for what they need to know how to do for their collaboration.

Another big worry is that just one or two people do the work and carry the others. Usually people fear the people, who they're working with might let them down as the team was put together by someone else, so there is no trust between the team members. This can be resolved in a number of ways. The team can draft an agreement on how they will do the work together, and how they will let each other know if they're not doing what's expected, and what the consequences will be if they situation continues. The team can also do their work in small slices so that they establish trust and a work pattern. Lastly, the team can do some social things together so that they learn more about each other, which helps to build trust.

These suggestions will help you avoid the nightmare scenarios of team collaboration, so that you can move towards a dream experience.

Simply begin with these ideas and then add more where you see opportunities. The book offers over 101 more ideas to help you work better with others.

The book is broken into ten chapters that will guide you towards better team collaborations. Find out how you might use a team charter to agree on how you'll do the work as a team before you start. Explore how you know that you're colleagues are doing their work, and that it will be ready on time. Get tips on how you can remove risk from your work from the start, so that you sleep better at night.

Ten Categories of Team Collaboration

1. Why bother to collaborate?

2. Who's on the team?

3. How do we work together?

4. How do we talk to each other?

5. How do we stay in touch?

6. How do we know how much work there is to do?

7. How do we decide what order to do the work?

8. How do remove risk from our work?

9. How do we pull the work together?

10. How do we review what we did?

A key part of the book is a focus on the many aspects of team collaboration, which should be put in place before you start your work together. These also help you work more smoothly together. With them in place, all of your work should go smoother.

Use the book to suit your context, and apply more ideas where they seem suitable. You can start to apply the ideas with your current collaborations, and also use them when you start new ones.

The book is almost complete. It awaits more feedback from reviewers, and illustrations for the ideas. You will be notified when the complete draft is available.

About the Author

Bruce Scharlau
Bruce Scharlau

I engineer 'learn by doing' experiences for university students with lean, agile, & service design. I coach people and teams, facilitate open space & co-creative events.

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Table of Contents

  • Introduction
    • The Ten Categories of Team Collaboration
  • Chapter 1: Why Bother to Collaborate?
  • Chapter 2: Who’s on the Team?
  • Chapter 3: How do we work together?
  • Chapter 4: How Do We Talk to Each Other?
  • Chapter 5: How Do We Stay in Touch with Each Other?
  • Chapter 6: How do we know how much work there is to do?
  • Chapter 7: How do we decide what order to do the work?
  • Chapter 8: How do remove risk from our work?
  • Chapter 9: How do we pull the work together?
  • Chapter 10: How do we review what we did?
  • What’s Next
  • Acknowledgements
  • Notes

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