Cross functional collaboration can be a vital tool when conducted properly and used to its full potential. When teams from different departments come together to work towards a common goal, it can provide companies with a greater perspective from all points of views.
What Is Cross Functional Collaboration?
Cross functional collaboration consists of a group of people with various expertise working together to solve a specific problem or implement improvements within the workplace. Through this powerful tool, businesses are able to create a culture that encourages workplace improvement. Employees are better equipped to take ownership of their problems and work alongside each other to find solutions. This type of collaboration can also boost teamwork and communication between groups. When properly implemented, improvements made with this method are more likely to stick.
Why Do Companies Engage in Cross Functional Collaboration?
You probably already know that collaboration is key for success. While sometimes collaboration happens organically, such as during a business function, other times it is up to management to intervene and make it happen. Cross functional collaboration allows professionals across different departments who would not ordinarily come together to gather and share ideas and strategies to improve business operations. Getting perspectives from different departments can prompt innovation, increase curiosity, and get everyone on the same page.
What are the Benefits of Cross Functional Collaboration?
Building a team with people from different departments can lead to countless benefits. Here are just a few of the reasons how cross functional teams can benefit your organization.
1. Different perspectives increase innovation
Seeing things from other people’s point-of-view is not always as simple as it seems. Sometimes it takes insight from another person’s perspective to see the bigger picture. Cross functional collaboration encourages members from a broad range of backgrounds, departments and specialties to share their creative ideas and strategies for the betterment of an organization.
This technique also promotes open communication in which asking for advice and help is not just permitted, but expected.
2. Similar viewpoints on a team decrease delays in production
Project delays can occur when team members are not able to come to a mutual conclusion. This can happen for a wide range of reasons, but the reality is that delays can result in lost time and money for a business. Cross functional collaboration promotes the sharing of similar viewpoints on a team which can help add confidence to ambiguous decisions, minimize indecision, and, as a result, keep production delays to a minimum.
3. Group or shared learning can be achieved
Cross functional collaboration works best when professionals from a variety of fields are chosen to be part of the team. When each team member possesses a unique skill set and knowledge, they can share what they have learned with one another, further stimulating creative breakthroughs and new ideas.
4. Outdated ideas can gain a new perspective
Maybe you have had an idea on how to grow your organization in the past but it was never executed due to something lacking in your concept. With cross functional collaboration, teams are able to bring outdated ideas back to the table where the creator can gain fresh perspectives from other professionals. Every idea can become valuable when a team works together to make it work.
5. Hierarchy within a company can be eliminated
Hierarchy certainly has its place in certain types of organizations and can even be useful when utilized properly. However, when the use of a hierarchy is used in a non-productive way, everyone loses out. It is important to gather ideas from people across all departments and levels. By encouraging employees to collaborate and share their ideas, regardless of their rank, employees throughout the pecking order can bring value and spark innovation.
Learn More About Cross Functional Collaboration
Cross functional collaboration is a great way to get the most out of your organization’s most important resource: it’s people. By allowing multi-disciplinary teams to come together, share ideas, and collaborate, you can leverage these resources is ways that help your business grow and thrive. Moreover, by utilizing the power of creative problem-solving, your organization can bring new solutions to company goals and objectives, maximize productivity and reduce your costs.
When assembling people for cross functional collaboration, it is important to consider all of your options. Ideally, you want top talent from all of your departments, including your sales team, product team, HR team, legal team, and marketing team. Building an all-star team of talented professionals gives your business the edge it needs to collaborate effectively and innovate efficiently. Contact The Eastham Group to learn more about the business strategy consulting services and how your organization can benefit from the support from an experienced business consultant.