According to Salesforce, 73% of sales teams say that cross-departmental collaboration is imperative to the sales process—yet 70% of customer experience professionals see silo mentality as their biggest obstacle. Sounds painful.
Silos, which can improve efficiency within specific areas, nonetheless hinder collaboration, innovation, productivity, and (ironically) organizational efficiency—all key facets of successful businesses. And whether your organization’s silos are the result of a hyper-focus on efficiency, turf-battles, or poorly executed organizational structures,, the effects are sharp.
3 reasons silos are so thorny:
1. Silos introduce redundancy.
“My team created the TPS report”. “So did we...”
Sound familiar? Those are the echoes of duplicate work, which unnecessarily costs businesses money while frustrating the people doing it.
2. Silos create misalignments and blind spots.
Most companies don’t make time to ensure that collaboration actually happens, so teams operate with little to no insight or regard for how their work impacts the rest of the organization. This lack of transparency and communication feeds organizational dysfunction and misalignment of priorities, leaving room for major blind spots. How could you ever reach a project deadline if you aren't talking to the people that you’re dependent on—wait, do you even know if there are dependencies in other departments?
3. Silos breed divisiveness.
When teams work in isolation, they tend to fall into an “us vs them” mentality, viewing other departments as competitors rather than allies. But in reality, reaching success should be a shared experience. Departments that organize people based on their knowledge and skills shouldn’t eclipse the fact that it takes all of those skills for the organization to function! And yet, without the ability to easily share ideas and perspectives across departments, that is exactly what happens... and when it does, innovation doesn’t stand a chance. Even more, divisiveness can cause subcultures and social cliques that hinder company culture and morale.
Looking up from the thorns to the roses: How Moovila lifts teams out of their silos and gets them working as one unit.
A single source of truth
Now we may be biased here, but we believe that sticking to one collaboration and work management platform is a clear way to depower silos and keep teams aligned. If everyone is reading off the same sheet of music, in the same book, there is much less opportunity to sing the wrong tune or lose harmony. Of course, it’s often functionally impossible to get everyone on the same platform—and even when you can, private folders, hidden chats, team-specific security clearances... and, in larger organizations, a seemingly infinite-scroll of projects, folders, and files create often insurmountable practical obstacles. We recommend working to achieve this goal by (1) starting with one team and assigning work to people in other departments to show the value of including dependent parties, and (2) uniting teams only around a work management solution that shows the connections across their workflows.
Inter-project dependencies—and transparency
See #2 above. If you have no idea what might be happening that could impact your work, or that your work may be impacting; or how your work could be empowered by another department, you are always at risk for a surprise... and it doesn’t take too many of those for work to get quite discombobulating. Moovila delivers the power to connect and visualize dependencies across projects and teams, so everyone can see how their tasks affect each project’s timeline and avoid major blind spots that could become showstoppers. This insight helps people understand their part in the success of interdepartmental initiatives, which will incite more ownership of work and desire to help others, as it helps the business succeed as a whole.
Here’s a tip for how to avoid duplicate work: assign specific tasks to specific people . Wait, don’t we already do that? And yet we still have accountability problems. Many tools allow you to assign work to people, but only Moovila adds extra accountability insurance by requiring the assignee to accept/reject their tasks. By creating these agreements and aligning specific requirements to people, due dates and priorities, Moovila encourages cultures in which people take more responsibility over their own work—thereby raising your odds of successful, timely executions.
Successfully collaborating across departments doesn’t have to be so prickly. If you’d like to learn more about how the world’s smartest work & project management tool can help you break down silos and execute on time, head to www.moovila.com.