Many business leaders see cross functional collaboration as the key to innovation and optimal business performance. Almost everyone agrees that it's good to have more cross functional collaboration, but not every business has devoted the effort to creating conditions that are likely to result in more of it. If you find yourself in this position, here are a few simple strategies that can help set the stage for a more cohesive relationship between various parts of the organization.
In most organizations, there are a number of individuals who are natural connectors. To borrow a word from junior high, these employees are “popular.” They are the perfect individuals to involve in your cross functional collaboration efforts because it likely comes naturally to them, and because where they go, others will follow. If you are creating a cross-functional team to solve a particular problem, for example, be sure to include one or more influencers.