Download: Collaboration Essential In Business
They say no man is an island, and this adage also applies in business. Even if you are working as a solopreneur in your business, there are occasions when you will rely on the cooperation and assistance of others. Even for the solopreneur, collaboration is essential in business.
Collaboration is necessary for any kind of business, large or small. It is simply not possible for a business to become sufficiently self-reliant, that it does not require input from other businesses. After all, business has levels of inputs and outputs that span a number of other businesses in the supply and distribution chain.
Collaboration does not only run across businesses but also finds its way within a business. The employees that offer their services in the daily running of the business, can also be seen to be collaborating with the business, in order to assist it in achieving its goals.
There are many benefits to collaboration in business, some of which are capital related and innovation inducing. The key element of collaboration is the pooling of resources, to allow businesses to achieve what they would not otherwise be capable of on their own.
Financial benefits can be found in collaboration when businesses bring their financial clout together, in order to jointly pursue big contracts. If there is a big project that requires a lot of financial capital, one or more companies can come together, after independently raising a loan, to jointly raise the necessary funds for the project.
Capital is not only financial, there is also human capital, and businesses can leverage human capital across their organisations. This might come in the form of staff exchange programmes, that enable collaborating businesses to share their human capital. Collaboration in human capital can also take the form of training programmes between businesses.
The exchange of intellectual property is another advantage that collaborating businesses can leverage. By sharing ideas across businesses, the collaborating organisations can increase their value through knowledge exchange. These exchanges drive and stimulate innovation as well as promote efficiency.
Skills sharing is another key area for collaboration. Just as businesses may come together to increase their financial clout, they may do so to improve their skills pool, and in the process are able to complete complex projects.
In order for a business to better collaborate with others, it is necessary to make some adjustments in the way it operates. You cannot continue working the way you do on your own, once you start to collaborate with other individuals and businesses.
The adjustments will primarily come in the workflow for the business. If you typically have all the decisions being made from within, this will have to change, once you start to collaborate with others.
You have to pick up a new workflow, which may involve delegating some of the decision making to other parties. It requires for the business to allow for a bit of vulnerability, and let others determine some aspects of how the business operates.
Collaboration is a matter of give-and-take. To benefit from the collaboration that others bring to a business, the business must be willing to let go in some areas. It however also needs to be careful which aspects to let go of, so that even if the business is dependent on others, the dependancy does not become a handicap.
This is why you have to be very careful when you choose people and businesses to collaborate with. You have to choose in such a way that the relationships you build, end up reinforcing your capabilities rather than diminishing them.
Webmobyle is a growing business and as such, it relies extensively on collaboration. Whilst some forms of collaboration are more obvious, others are not so apparent.
For instance, being a growing business, Webmobyle outsources its server architecture. This means that websites and web apps are hosted on servers outsourced from third party companies.
In a model like ours, it is very important to choose businesses that work well with our workflow when collaborating through outsourcing. So far the collaboration with these companies has gone very well. When you collaborate with other businesses on an essential service, it is crucial that the collaboration has to be seamless.
The companies that provide the servers hosting websites and apps for us almost feel like an extension of Webmobyle. Their support departments in a sense also become our support departments. It is therefore important that the support services offered by these companies are responsive, otherwise we would have unhappy customers when technical issues arise on these servers.
These collaborations have enabled Webmobyle to run professional hosting services for our projects. This is a task that would be simply impossible, if we were to do everything on our own. These collaborations enable us to focus on design and development, and let specialists in hosting focus on that part of the equation.
Essentially, this is the super-power of collaboration; to leverage the strength of others to complement your own, and in the process focus on whatever it is that is your core business.
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