Building a culture with team collaboration tools
Next time you go to a coffee shop, take a moment to notice all the remote workers hunkered down at the tables, laptop to laptop. It’s a common sight all across America now. In fact, the number of people telecommuting in the US has gone up 115% in the last 10 years.1 How did we get here?
In the past, there was a common misconception that if organizations allowed teleworking, team members wouldn’t collaborate well because they weren’t gathered together in the same room. And all business leaders know that team collaboration is essential to productivity, growth, and innovation.
A recent Stanford study2 found that even the perception of working collectively on a task can supercharge performance. According to an article in Forbes3 about the study, “Participants in the research who were primed to act collaboratively stuck at their task 64% longer than their solitary peers, whilst also reporting higher engagement levels, lower fatigue levels, and a higher success rate.”
But with today’s technologies, there’s more to teamwork than being in the same place at the same time. If you take a closer look at those people working in the coffee shop, you’ll notice that many of them are communicating—and yes, collaborating—in real time with their colleagues across town and even across the world.
New developments in technology are empowering employees to be better team players. Some are even more effective than their in-office counterparts. In a study, almost 70% of participants performed better in virtual brainstorming sessions than in traditional ones4 . It appears virtual brainstorming works even better with large groups, while in-person brainstorming is less effective when there are more than six participants5.
Organizations are increasingly accommodating people who want to work outside the office or outside office hours. They’ve heard—or seen for themselves—that high levels of collaboration are possible among remote employees. But collaboration doesn’t happen by chance. You’ve got to consciously create a collaborative culture, assisted by technology.
To make your company’s culture more collaborative, seek out and adopt solutions that enable you to:
- Empower teams to work together, wherever and whenever, to support people in different places and time zones.
- Support multitasking across teams and projects, as most staff are doing more than one thing at a time.
- Allow for screen sharing, and sharing of documents.
- Provide a variety of communication and collaboration channels so remote workers don’t feel disconnected from the rest of the team.
- Bring together the entire team for brainstorming, with white boarding, video conferencing and everything else the team needs to feel like they’re all in the same virtual room, generating cool new ideas.
- Keep meetings—and all work—confidential with state-of-the-art security.
Learn more about how to support high-productivity collaboration across widespread teams. Download your free copy of our e-book Team work makes the dream work: building a collaborative culture.
 Global Workplace Analytics and Flex Jobs, “The 2017 State of Telecommuting in the U.S. Employee Workforce,” June 2017.
 ScienceDirect, Computers in Human Behavior, Volume 23, Issue 3, “The medium matters: Mining the long-promised merit of group interaction in creative idea generation tasks in a meta-analysis of the electronic group brainstorming literature,” May 2007.
 Harvard Business Review, “Why Brainstorming Works Better Online,” April 2, 2015.
Apr 14, 2021 — Annemarie Brandsen