Summary of Disciplined Collaboration

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Business leaders need to make collaboration part of the fabric of their organizations rather than an occasional occurrence. For that to happen, they must make sure their employees feel passionate about working together. People need to learn to overcome fears that they lose value by collaborating and understand that collective effort enhances each individual’s value. Leadership consultant Emmanuel Gobillot’s explanations, case studies and examples are rich in insight, though his complex style sometimes makes it hard to follow his arguments. getAbstract recommends his intriguing study of group dynamics and the roots of collaboration to senior executives, team leaders and human relations professionals.

About the Author

Emmanuel Gobillot, author of Follow the Leader: The One Thing Great Leaders Have That Great Followers Want and The Connected Leader: Creating Agile Organizations for People, Performance and Profit, is a consultant and speaker.



Using Organizational Charts

Most companies post an organizational chart – made up of boxes connected by lines – to represent their internal structure. Leaders tend to spend a lot of energy on job descriptions, human relations, employee evaluation and business processes. But, often, they spend far less time on the “white spaces” that surround the graphic representations of how their organizations function, even though that is where most collaboration happens. Paradoxically, managers often know that some of their firm’s most productive work comes from interactions that don’t show up on the chart.

Not every task requires people to work together. Some decisions demand that a single person take responsibility. Collaboration means melding individual responsibility with the art of working collectively. As organizations become more structured, they find it harder to foster internal collaboration. To work well, groups must manage collaboration. The difficulties that can emerge often derive from an organization structure that doesn’t support collaboration rather than from a lack of managerial acumen.

“Collaboration is Power”

When a jazz band performs, everyone...

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