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Ask Yourself: Are Your Teams Ready for a Cross-Functional Collaboration?

March 15, 2020

Cross-functional collaboration, done right, can lead to big ideas, increased employee satisfaction and education, improved teamwork, and, ultimately, explosive innovation. Ask yourself these questions to help your team work better, together:

WHAT IS YOUR GOAL? A clear goal is the basis for any type of innovation, but is especially important when it comes to cross-functional collaboration. Make sure you clearly establish for any teams involved what the ultimate goal of the collaboration is. A unified team with a clear goal will move more quickly and efficiently than a purposeless team.

WHO PLAYS WHAT ROLE? When it comes to cross-functional collaboration, clarity is key. Is one team leading the charge? Are both teams equally responsible for the same role? Or do the teams handle different pieces of the project? Regardless of your answer, if your team doesn’t know it, different expectations might lead to tension or confusion.

DO YOUR TEAMS HAVE THE NECESSARY TOOLS AND SKILLSETS? Collaborating across roles and functions (or even across time zones) can present unique challenges. Consider whether your teams have experience communicating—whether in-person or via email or other tools—and brainstorming with groups that may have a different vocabulary, method, or understanding of the best way to communicate. Is your team having trouble with cross-functional collaboration?

Is your team having trouble with cross-functional collaboration? Learn more about overcoming your cross-functional conundrums.