Use the C-word more often
Before we dive into the C word, have you noticed how many people use the S word in business? The S word is damaging and met with frustration, anger and disengaged staff. Yes, “Silo”. Oh I sorry I used this word but let’s face it, it is prevalent in many companies.
- The silo mentality definition is where people in an organization only create and focus on their own goals and motivations. Often silo behavior demonstrates symptoms of resistance to information and resource sharing.
Have you asked for information or tried to communicate to other areas of your business only to meet with an “oh, sorry we cannot do that. We have too stretched already to meet our own goals/ we have other projects that are a priority so cannot help/ our systems will not merge with that/ yes, but in xyz department we need to measure things differently.” And so the list can go on.
Silo mentality in the workplace is often highlighted at times of need or challenging times for a business. You may see some people having a “cozy life” in an office department and yet in another department observe how stretched the staff are.
Special JAMSO Observation: @@Silo mentality starts from the top of the organization and cascades down.@@ Tweet this
To solve silo behavior in life and at business is the C word.
How to implement collaboration.
The first step is to recognize the key silo areas affecting the business. There may be a companywide culture or pockets of silo behavior within an organization. To address these cases, the leadership (CEO) needs to create the best environment for success.
· A vision for the business needs to include collaborative elements that all areas of the business can identify itself clearly. (Avoid a sales/ marketing/ R&D bias statement)
· Create common goals of the business. (See my prior SMARTER goals article on how to create goals)
· Introduce incentives and motivation for successful outcomes
· Mange, monitor and measure the progress and outputs from collaboration change
· Use a specific collaboration project to create new value within the business and for the customers.
Special JAMSO observation:
@@Create accountability within an organization to address silo behavior traits@@ thus proactively designing out future silo risks.
Additional Structural Tips:
· Show trust within the organization and empowerment should be encouraged.
· Design the business organization to require collaborative actions and crossover of tasks
· Encourage informality between department leaders
· Invest in cross departmental technology tools to encourage transparency and broad skill sets.
· Share cross departmental best practice systems and processes
· Stimulate collaboration through the physical working environment of staff and furniture to bring common meeting places
Today’s work environment requires ever higher productivity levels and high performance standards. These challenges can be the root cause of silo mentality. This may encourage leaders to only look after their own performance metrics and goals. This however is addressable through the implementation of common business goals and serious consideration to the balance score card as a management tool.
Do you recognize any of the scenarios I have explained? What is your experience facing silo behavior? Have you reflected on your own approach to work to see if you are also guilty of some silo mentality traits?
Contact JAMSO for help on performance management and KPI challenges to help boost your business performance. We engage with business intelligence, analytics and big data for goal setting training and project consultancy. Our goal is to help 250,000 people and companies each year so please share this article to anyone you feel can be better informed or helped.
We publish twice a week and this short style article is produced each Tuesday, our longer format free material is published on Thursday’s. Why not subscribe below for free to join early bird offers, discounts and automatic delivery of our articles.