In June 2012, Deloitte captured the CEO Insomnia Index from a diverse range of Business leaders in order to determine the most common opportunities and challenges businesses endure. The top 3 opportunities identified by the study were innovation, collaboration, and leadership. Add in technological advancements in the mobile space, evolving workplace tools and the growth of enterprise collaboration platforms, and the future of work has a lot of opportunities!
Employees can not innovate unless they are empowered to do so. Rigid hierarchy and the command and control style of working is giving way to a more relaxed work environment, where employees recieve freedom and autonomy in their responsibilites. Some are even calling the movement the end of bureaucracy and the rise of adhocracy. More often though, innovation is a by-product of other factors like ownership, engagement, leadership, and collaboration.
Improved insight for making critical business decisions is probably the biggest reason collaboration is a big deal in organizations today. On the other hand, work is more collaborative, and team focused today too. The ROI impacts of poor collaboration are quite high. Organizations as a whole are expected to spend $37 billion on employee misunderstanding and miscommunications and experience $26,041 per worker per year in lost productivity.
Work today also requires more tacit knowledge, something that is best developed through conversations and social relationships. Supporting social learning and collaboration within an organization leads to better employees and the interesting phenomenon of wirerarchy.
Birds flock, fish school and people tribe. The flattening of the organizational hierarchy and the increased need for collaboration at work has lead to what is popularly known as Tribal Leadership. In an October 2011 white paper on the topic of collaborative leadership, Thomas J. Hurley of the Oxford Learning Academy wrote that collaborative leadership is “grounded in a belief that all of us together can be smarter, more creative, and more competent than any of us alone, especially when it comes to addressing the kinds of novel, complex, and multi-faceted problems that organizations face today. It calls on leaders to use the power of influence rather than positional authority to engage and align people, focus their teams, sustain momentum, and perform. Success depends on creating an environment of trust, mutual respect, and shared aspiration in which all can contribute fully and openly to achieving collective goals. Leaders must thus focus on relationships as well as results, and the medium through which they operate is high-quality conversation.”
Enterprise Collaboration Tools and Future of Work
Our habits and attitudes around work are changing. Today collaboration is more critical than ever. While culture will still be the key driver behind the successful implementation of enterprise collaboration networks, technology adoption provides the platform. Enterprise collaboration platforms like MangoApps provide quick Q&As and feedback, file sharing, group work, messaging and more making it easier than ever for employees to be plugged in, post and cross-pollinate ideas, brainstorm solutions and provide customer feedback.