Collaboration is not always an exact science. However, it is not really possible without a synthesis of different branches of science. If approached correctly, as a business strategy, then it clearly leads serious planners and managers to consult different elements that require a deeper understanding of things, e.g. human motivations, group dynamics, economic choices and drivers. and so on. Collaboration is now a practice that is finding its way such that every aspect of its value chain is being constructed and delivered competitively. Take for instance the use of ‘collaborative contracting’; a novel way of improving efficiency. Read more in the latest edition of Recommended Readings below.


A Study of Thousands of Dropbox Projects Reveals How Successful Teams Collaborate

The use of virtual file-sharing platforms like Dropbox, Google Docs, and others has become ubiquitous in business, academic, and other settings. But is your team using such collaborative platforms as effectively as they could be?

Whether working on cancer cures or the latest consumer-tech products, how teams collaborate affects their performance and success. We know a lot about how teams collaborate face-to-face, with regard to leadership, communication, conflict resolution, and other areas. But less is known about how groups work together virtually. As more and more collaboration happens in digital settings, it’s critical to understand best practices for working in such spaces…READ ON


Managing Collaboration in an Age of Disrupted Teams

Projects would run more efficiently, decisions would be made more quickly and outcomes would shine with the thoughtful, timely input of cross-functional team members. As we know all too well, however, in the real world that canvas is more of a quilt. Different teams and team members communicate and collaborate via a patchwork of platforms—including email, social media and messaging—based on individual preferences rather than on a larger organizational strategy.

There are a number of reasons for this. The current knowledge workforce spans four generations, and team members can be dispersed anywhere across the globe. They bring with them differing views on how to use technology and the value of teamwork…READ ON


Collaborative contracting: Making it happen

Alliance contracting, also called integrated project delivery (IPD) in the United States—in which owners, contractors, and engineers are integrated into a single contract—has been heralded as the cure for what ails contracting. Indeed, many large firms in other industries, such as retail, healthcare, and financial services, have had great success with IPD…READ ON


New Study: Open Offices Kill Teamwork

office space

People like privacy. They like to speak one on one. And if you don’t give them at least some privacy (cubicles don’t really have a great deal of soundproofing but it’s better than nothing), people will turn to the means they have for private communication–electronic ones. You might as well all be working from home.

Employees hate open office plans, but at least they help employees collaborate and work together? It saves companies money and it increases teamwork, right? Well, wrong.

Ethan Bernstein and Stephen Turban, at Harvard Business School and Harvard University, took a look at people who switched from individual cubicles to an open office plan. What they found wasn’t more collaboration after the switch but less. Participants in the study spent

73 percent less time in face-to-face interactions

67 percent more time on email

75 percent more time on instant messenger

Not exactly what you want to see when you move your employees into an open office plan. Instead of looking up across the table and saying, “Hey, Jane, what do you think about this?” they are sending text messages…READ ON


Is Your Company’s Culture Toxic? Eight Warning Signs To Watch For

When employees feel discouraged — quietly or otherwise — with the organization they work for, there can be a significant impact on how well a company does, long term.

If you think your company culture could use some work, it is likely already teetering on turning toxic. This isn’t something to ignore, or hope that time will fix on its own. If left to fester, coming back from a poor environment is problematic: Attitudes and approaches linger. You need to take control of your corporate culture now and make the necessary changes in order to provide your employees the welcoming environment they need…READ ON


Why expecting the unexpected could be the key to working well with others

People who are tolerant of ambiguity—a kind of uncertainty in which the odds of an outcome are unknown—are more likely to cooperate with and trust other people, according to new research.

Tolerance of ambiguity is distinct from tolerance of risk. With risk, the probability of each future outcome is known, says Oriel Feldman Hall, author of the study and an assistant professor of cognitive, linguistic, and psychological sciences at Brown University. The many unknowns inherent in social situations make them inherently ambiguous, and the study finds that attitudes toward ambiguity are a predictor of one’s willingness to engage in potentially costly social behavior….READ ON


Finn AI collaborates with Visa Developer to expand its banking chatbot platform

Vancouver-based Finn AI announced a strategic collaboration with Visa Canada, which will see the FinTech leveraging the Visa Developer platform within Finn AI’s conversational chatbot platform.

Launched in February 2016, the Visa Developer platform gives developers access to Visa’s suite of payment products and services, APIs, and software development kits that work with Visa payment products and capabilities.

Finn AI said it will use Visa Developer’s APIs to enhance its conversational banking chatbots, and allow banks to create more personalized experiences for their customers. For example, a customer might chat with a virtual banking assistant and follow a process to ensure their cards know when they’re travelling to enable travel notifications, receive foreign exchange rates…READ ON