Are you having trouble getting your group to work together? Do you wish you could experience greater unity and still get everything accomplished you'd like to? In this video I want to help you understand how I build teamwork with a collaborative.
Building Teamwork With A Collaborative
In 2007, I conducted a workshop on Team-Building for an organization called the Minority Health Roundtable of Greater Cleveland. What a marvelous experience!
What’s a collaborative?
About 50 people from 20 minority health agencies attended this workshop. We met at The Gathering Place in Beachwood, Ohio.
Although the organization called itself a roundtable, it was actually a collaborative. By definition, a collaborative is two or more entities working together to achieve something.
These agencies differed in their goals, or reasons for being. Their only commonality was that they promoted health in some way.
They told me that their single goal as a collaborative was to become a team.
How Do You Make A Collaborative Team?
I had been a facilitator since 1991, but this was the first time I was faced with a challenge like this. I searched my resources and came up with a dandy of a tool to help them build teamwork.
To this day, I am thanking my lucky stars that I had a copy of Peter Senge’s book called “The Fifth Discipline Fieldbook.” This book laid out a four-hour exercise tailor-made for a large group of people who wanted to become a team.
I made maximum use of Peter Senge’s Breakout Group concept. I divided the 50 people into four breakout groups and sent them off into separate corners of the auditorium we were in.
I gave two groups a question to work on for 30 minutes: In order to make your organization what you want it to be, what do you need to do that you’re not doing now? Their task was to come up with three vision items and three change items.
I gave the other two groups a different question to work on for 30 minutes: In order to make your organization what you want it to be, what do you need to do differently from what you’re doing now? They had the same task as the other two groups.
The energy was flowing!
When I reformed the main group, a spokesperson from each breakout group reported on their top three vision items and change items. The similarities among the four groups thrilled the participants.
Then I worked the whole group to gain consensus around their top three priorities for vision items and change items, a total of six items.
The Final Act
The last step of the workshop was to prioritize the organization’s six items and develop an action plan to implement them.
The beauty of this step was that different people in the organization offered to champion each action item and commit to a timetable for doing it.
For me, the payoff occurred five years later when I met up with someone who had been a participant in the Team-Building workshop. This person remembered me and said they were so excited about that experience that they were still talking about it!
They had become a team!
Tom Romito is an interpreter of Native American Culture, a facilitator of organizations who want to grow, and a Reiki practitioner dedicated to helping people heal. Tom shares stories and skills to help you energize your world.