Stop, Collaborate, and Listen

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This is the Way…of Work

Our workplaces have evolved more rapidly than we could ever have anticipated. Consequently, the way we work must also evolve. Whereas once we would have physically seen the colleagues that we shared a task or project with, for many of us, those colleagues are now on the other side of a screen. That probably isn’t going to change any time soon, as expressed here by Apollo Technical.

Communication coach Ashira Prossack, writing for Forbes, depicts strategies that can help us coordinate more effectively. Foremost among these is the adoption of platforms such as video chat services along the lines of Teams and Zoom. The struggles of adopting such platforms are well-known by now, even parodied by SNL. Yet, their implementation is crucial for team cohesion and success. Visual and vocal cues are the unrelenting glue behind all effective collaboration—a truth unchanged by the advent of the remote office.

Author Carol Kinsey Goman, in this piece for Forbes, portrays the power of physical communication. Body language and fluctuations of voice are necessary for us to better understand one another. Do we want to convey the urgency of a looming deadline? Our voices can emphasize the situation much better than words in a chat bubble. Do we want to show our teams that things are going well? Then our posture in video can best delineate our confidence.

No matter the era, effective collaboration remains critical for the success of our teams. It will undoubtedly always be necessary that we present ourselves to our teams, whether face to face or in front of a computer. This video by Harvard Business Review further outlines a blueprint by which to collaborate with a remote team.

Though it’s not without its challenges, the new way of work may have invited a more level playing field for those of us who would have been less inclined to give our voices to in-person meetings. Introverted colleagues can now engage their teams from a place of comfort, perhaps even presenting more of their personality than they otherwise might have.

Today, stop to consider how we engage with one another. Consider posture, others’ and ours. Whether on camera or not, our demeanor radiates through our posture. Listen to the voices of our team, looking for hints of laughter or gravity. Regardless of the era, collaboration is a harmony of needs—the presentation of ours and the understanding of our team’s.

“The sweetest music is not in the oratorio, but in the human voice when it speaks from its instant life tones of tenderness, truth, or courage.”
– Ralph Waldo Emerson

Do you have an idea you want to share with an empowered community of self-aware professionals? If you’d like to contribute an idea or article to ‘In The Flow of Work’ on the Evolve blog, just send us a message or submit a post to our Head of Content, Adam Schneider

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