amanda felix bus 550 tuesday may 24 2011 l.
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The Collaborative Organization: How to Make Employee Networks Really Work PowerPoint Presentation
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  1. Amanda Felix BUS 550 Tuesday, May 24, 2011 The Collaborative Organization:How to Make Employee Networks Really Work

  2. Why Employee Networks? • Traditional methods are not enough! • Reduce costs, improve efficiency and spur innovation! • Information technology is becoming increasingly more critical!

  3. Why Employee Networks? • The IT department must be a strategic business partner • Forecast the business impact of emerging technologies • Lead the development of new IT-enabled products and services • Drive adoption of innovative technologies that differentiate the organization from competitors

  4. Why Employee Networks? • The key to having both operational excellence and innovation is having networks of informal collaboration • Innovative solutions often emerge from informal, unplanned interactions between individuals who see problems from different perspectives ** Not all situations fit established processes**

  5. Organizational Network Analysis • Offers useful methodology to help executives: • Assess broader patterns of informal networks among individuals, teams, functions and organizations • Then take targeted steps to align networks with strategic imperatives

  6. Through Network Analysis You Can Find Out: • Who looks to who for information and expertise • Whom they engage with on routine decision making • Whom they turn to when dealing with problems that require more innovative brain storming • How much time they invest in specific collaborations

  7. Network Analysis Detects Structural Problems • Senior leaders who understand broad patterns of employee interaction and what makes for effective internal networks have opportunities to reduce collaborative costs and network inefficiencies

  8. Four Critical Ways to Improve Performance • Attain benefits of scale through effective global collaboration • Drive work force engagement and performance • Align collaborative with business partners and external stakeholders • Minimize network inefficiencies and costs

  9. 1). Attain Benefits of Scale Through Effective Global Collaboration • Optimize their operations locally rather than globally • Leads to redundancies in expertise, capabilities and technology investments *** hint hint*** • Plus there are fundamental incompatibilities across geographies • Benefits of scale require having connections across geographies • Deploying new communication technologies is not the same as collaboration

  10. Monsanto Co. • IT company– global agribusiness company • Many of the team members had previously collaborated with one another • Instead of individual projects they were able to orchestrate a single global rollout • Leveraged an external network of contacts

  11. How did they do it? • By building lateral networks • The creation of a global virtual network whose goal was to standardize infrastructure • Chose team members based on their strong personal networks across the organization and deep local ties • Virtual teams addressed cross organizational issues and were composed of employees from around the world

  12. Bridge Builders • Network analysis showed that team members were more frequently sought out for their expertise and insights • Others turned to them to discuss new opportunities or to solve difficult problems • 55% of those that participated were cited among the top performers during the annual company review • Some teams are only held together by 3 or 4 individuals • The departure of a few key people reduced the level of connectivity among those who remained by more than 50%

  13. Reducing Network Silos • Network analysis helps managers assess the health of cross organizational collaboration while suggesting improvement opportunities • Looked for opportunities to enhance collaboration across function, distance and technical specialization • Had to consider ways to generate more connectivity--what happens if you lose people?

  14. 2). Drive Workforce Engagement and Performance • IT organizations are heavily focused on measurable goals • Takes the focus off things that are harder to measure—work practices, collaboration and documentation • These things are important!!

  15. Improving Collaboration Effectiveness • Study the networks of high performance • High performers • Have larger networks • Connect to people with diverse expertise from a broad range of functions and across different locations • CIOs can leverage these findings • Replicate the networks of high performers! • The more top performers in an org the better • Top performers have access to the best expertise available, not just what was physically nearby

  16. Identifying High Performers • People connected to high performers were much more likely to report feeling energized by the interactions • High performers were also likely to have contacts that they found more energizing than average • It benefits leaders to identify energizers • Identify which employees are disengaged

  17. 3). Align Collaborations with Business Partners and External Stakeholders • Innovation often involves migrating ideas from one context to another. • Expose employees • Create a map • Ex: Business analysts tend to be well connected externally but less sought out by their internal colleagues • An underexploited resource for promoting innovative new ideas

  18. 4). Minimize Network Inefficiencies and Collaborative Costs • Decisions in IT organizations must address complex sets of interdependencies. • Reduce network creativity at points where collaboration failed to produce sufficient value • 3-5% of the most connected people accounted for 25-35% of the network ties

  19. Role Based Factors • Central connectors • Enterprise level responsibilities • Interactions with a wide range of other IT units • Large number of direct reports. • To reduce collaboration overload • Identify network opportunities for rerouting access to the information they held

  20. Personal Factors • Network overload can also occur when employees lean too heavily on colleagues for technical expertise or help in navigating the organization • Shifting non technical aspects to others • Deliberate attempts not to respond to questions from internal clients • “When people saw I was putting my trust in him that really boosted his confidence and helped people across various groups see that he was a good guy to go to” • Document projects thoroughly to ensure that you are not the sole expert

  21. In Conclusion… • Employee networks can transform rigid organizations into flexible units that can adapt and innovate • CIOs need to let go of some of their traditional management methods and embrace a different more collaborative management model • Although organizational charts and standardized processes can provide important underpinnings, they are not flexible enough!

  22. MC Question: • Optimizing operations locally rather than globally… • A) Leads to redundancies in expertise, capabilities and technology investments • B) Is the best way to optimize operations • C) Leads to increased collaboration across all networks