Teamwork is critical.

The old acronym Together Everyone Achieves More is so accurate. When everyone on the TEAM is collaborating, that is when the magic happens.

One of the responsibilities of our leadership is to attract, equip and bring each member together. Using the respective knowledge and skills of each member for the betterment of the cause; that’s leadership.

I have found some key principles of collaboration:

Mutual Respect: as leaders we must have the respect of those on the team, especially when it comes to collaboration. Team members need to have the confidence if they share information, opinions, etc., that they count, they will be heard.

Mutual respect, by definition is based on the belief that everyone has a valuable contribution to make, not just you and me. We must believe and communicate that everyone brings something to the table; each person has opinions, ideas and input. If we don’t believe this, then what appears to be collaboration is nothing more than keeping people “in the loop.”

Inclusiveness: this principle is particularly true with new initiatives. If it is your idea, bring together as many people as possible who will have a role in the project. This will help provide “ownership” to them as individuals, not just you the leader. I have found when people feel ownership they feel empowered. When people are empowered as a team the result of collaboration is victory.

Remember, working together precedes winning together