In order to innovate, team members must cooperate, engage, and come up with new ideas. There is no clear formula for fostering teamwork that is based on intimate, direct interactions between team members.
Fremont, CA: Organizations have historically relied on the vitality of face-to-face, copresent teams working both formally and informally in workshops, cubicles, halls, and watercoolers to inspire and refine ideas for creativity. Copresence's dynamic energy is regarded as vital for embedding creativity into an organization's organizational culture. However, after the pandemic-caused mass migration from the workplace and the transition to remote work, leaders must consider how to embed creativity in remote teams.
Connecting for Collaboration
In order to innovate, team members must cooperate, engage, and come up with new ideas. There is no clear formula for fostering teamwork that is based on intimate, direct interactions between team members. Leaders must purposefully engage with their immediate team members one-on-one in the absence of face-to-face experiences.
A senior vice president of a major telecommunications company described a period when he suspected a team member was having problems and simply called that person to check-in. This brief, spontaneous call changed the entire tone and calibre of their partnership, allowing for more engaged exchanges necessary for innovation.
Building relationships for cooperation necessitates leaders understanding and responding to team members' individual challenges. The CFO of a technology behemoth explained how, by imagining herself in the shoes of individuals on her team, she was able to provide more practical help, which increased teamwork and interaction. Building relationships for cooperation necessitates leaders understanding and responding to team members' individual challenges.
Front-line employees, such as management and sales managers, are frequently the ones who have the most direct contact with consumers. It is up to these front-line workers to express their novel ideas and intuitions and, most importantly, to be heard. Leaders must engage profoundly and deliberately with front-line workers in order for them to willingly cooperate with leaders and openly exchange feedback.
One senior vice president of a leading technology firm explained how he uses the time he would have spent flying to high-level senior management meetings around the world to attend more routine virtual meetings organized by his senior managers with their front-line staff. His frequent encounters and increased exposure to more workers at all levels enable team members to more freely discuss their ideas with him and use those meetings to create the link and collaboration that can drive innovation. Furthermore, frequent exposure of these front-line workers to the executive's big-picture organizational perspective will help ward off siloed thinking and allow the more holistic perspective needed for innovation.