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Collaborative teamwork: It all starts with the senior HR leader

Employees surveyed by Wrike ranked lack of collaboration and team members not delivering as a priority. Dysfunctional teamwork is one of the top HR issues, and  71.6 percent of professionals surveyed by Waggl said agility, collaboration and trust were major priorities. Those surveyed by SHRM agreed that teamwork is a challenge: Creating an organizational culture where trust, open communication and fairness are emphasized and demonstrated by leaders was the top tactic professionals said was needed to meet HR challenges. And since teamwork starts from the top, management have to lead this collaborative challenge.

According to Dermot Crowley, a productivity thought leader, author, speaker and trainer: “Working together is a complex thing. That is why we need to pull the right levers to ensure the most productive outcome when we interact or collaborate. The three key levers we can influence to increase productive collaboration are how we communicate (email), how we meet (meetings) and how we interact (collaboration). By creating protocols in these three areas, and by setting an expectation with our colleagues about their behaviours, we can significantly reduce the friction caused by poor collaboration, and amplify the productivity of the whole team. There are three essential ingredients needed for productive collaboration to take place. We firstly need to get alignment so that everyone understands what we are trying to achieve. This helps us to prioritise and creates an insight into the needs and priorities of our colleagues. We also need agreement about how we are going to work together – a shared understanding of accepted collaboration behaviours. Lastly we need to have an awareness of our own behaviours and how they impact on the productivity of others. If we can get these three ingredients right, we can then collaborate with respect, judgement and understanding. Our own productivity will increase as we amplify the productivity of others.”

It all starts with the senior HR leader

In this era of rapid business change, the role of the CHRO becomes radically different and more demanding than ever. Today’s CHRO  must know how to bring the HR team together and help it evolve into a more distributed, business-integrated function. CHROs must also be comfortable adopting and embracing technology and analytics, which are integral to HR’s future success.

Research shows that nearly 40 percent of new CHROs now come from the business, not from HR. At Liberty Mutual, for instance, the chief talent and enterprise services officer, Melanie Foley, previously served as executive vice president of distribution at Liberty Personal Markets.

Productivity needs to be led from the top, and by key influencers like HR. Expectations need to be set. And when it comes to productivity, technology is a part of the solution, but expectations needs to be set about the consistent use of this technology.

According to Dermot Crowley:A productive culture starts with the leadership team, and with the key influencers in the organisation such as HR. It requires work, persistence and dedication, but the results are worth it. Everyone feels more engaged, more energised and less stressed.”

About Dr. Ev D'aMigo; PhD

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