Collaboration Is More Than a Sack Race

men-in-an-arrow-in-orangeI was reading an article about non-collaborative senior management teams, and why that is such a problem for professional services firms.  It is so easy for professional services firms to become siloed with all the pressures to build a solid market practice, geographical foothold and turn a profit for the firm.  One of the key points in an article from Harvard Business Review, When Senior Managers Won’t Collaborate (March 2015) authored by Heidi K. Gardner, is that professional services firms have to move  beyond siloed services to complex, interdependent engagements.  Think about that! I’ve been a proponent of collaboration throughout my career.   I realized long ago that bringing together siloed practices made a much stronger team and those team members complimented each other’s efforts.  What the article confirms is teams that collaborate generate more of everything for the firm:  sales, profit, client referrals, client loyalty, and even expands the capabilities of your team members making them stronger and stronger.  Another bonus?  Firms with teams that collaborated were stronger during economic downturns.  The benefits go on and on, but many firms don’t know how to build a collaborative team.  The article rightly advises start at the top and begin with yourself, modeling your behavior by contributing to others’ client work, and sharing credit with others.  Try it with your team and start the collaborative epidemic.  I highly recommend reading this article online for great ideas and inspiration on the topic.

Ann Banning - Wright