If you’re the owner of a small business, you want to make sure to do everything in your power to run your business in a way that gets everyone in on the success. When your team wins, you win. Your team is what drives the value of your business, your team is the foundation to your business value proposition.
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But sometimes it can be hard to know how to go about doing that. Which projects need to be a sort of solo mission and which ones need to be a collaborative event? Most importantly, how can you go about implementing business collaboration in a meaningful way within your own company?
We know it can be difficult to know what to do to create a collaborative environment and that’s why we’ve put together these five simple ways that you can implement business collaboration.
When you hear “business collaborations,” what do you think of? Do you think of two businesses teaming up together? Or do you think of the inner parts of a company functioning together effectively?
If you thought of either of these good news, you’re right. The concept of business collaboration includes both inside collaboration within the company and external collaboration with other businesses, influencers, and even local events.
Why is it that business collaboration, whether external or internal, is so important?
There are a few reasons why business collaboration is key when it comes to learning how to create a brand identity, getting your employees on the same page, and growing your small business into something bigger and better.
Internal business collaboration is important because it makes employees have a vested interest in what project they’re a part of. Think of it as when you did group projects in high school. Was it more effective when everyone participated equally, or did you prefer it when one person took control over the whole thing and didn’t let anyone else have any input? Probably the first one, right?
Internal collaboration gives your employees a voice and a reason to enjoy working with you. This helps immensely when figuring out how to write a vision statement for your business.
External collaboration is important because it offers you new perspectives that you may not have considered before. It can also extend your reach as a company to other markets and new potential customers that you may not have had before.
Collaborating externally also has the added benefit of helping out the other company or person your business is collaborating with. It’s always a good idea to network and help other businesses succeed. When we all help each other out, we all win in the end.
Now that you know the why, let’s take a look at the how.
Here are a few ideas to get you started on your business collaboration journey.
Before we look outward, we need to first look within our own business. Like we discussed earlier, it’s important to make sure everyone on the team has a voice, but how can you do that in an organized and productive way?
Here are a few innovative ways that you can get your employees actively involved with your company’s success.
In today’s world of new technology, we would be remiss if we didn’t incorporate it into our own businesses.
Today, there are all sorts of software that allow for active workplace collaboration. You or your business partner can use something like a smartboard during an in-person presentation to let people add notes or draw what ideas they’re suggesting for clarity.
With all the outside-of-the-office work we’re doing, these online collaboration tools also allow for collaboration on a global scale. You can also screen share during your next video conference to have the rest of your team add things to a list or jot down ideas that you can come back to at a later date.
It seems like there’s a podcast about pretty much everything these days, so why not capitalize on that with your business? Have a podcast where you discuss ideas about the industry that you work in, co-hosted and co-created by your team members.
You could also do an employee interview series to help your audience get to know them.
These forms of business storytelling allow customers and clients to connect with your company on a more personal level, creating a bond that will humanize your product.
We’ve all heard of networking by this point, but how many of us have actively participated in it? Now is your chance. Invite your team out to a networking event with other industry professionals. This will bring your crew together and help you branch out and make new connections.
Now that we’ve done the work within our team, let’s take a look at how we can collaborate with other businesses as well.
Who doesn’t love a good collaboration clothing line? When we were younger, it was usually collaborations between shoe companies and our favorite superheroes or movie characters, but today, the sentiment is the same.
Launch a product or a package together with another business to boost sales for both of you and reach new audiences.
Many companies are implementing things like an “Instagram takeover” where one of their employees will take over the page for the day. There’s no reason why this can’t extend to other businesses, as well.
Promote one of their products or services alongside yours on your page and have them do the same. With the success of social media advertising, this is an easy and effective way to collaborate with another business.
If you’re wondering why businesses fail, it is because they lack a cohesive team and the ability to be flexible with an ever-changing market.
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