Posted by: healingtheworkplace | June 18, 2009

Creating Collaborative Workplaces


Recently someone asked me for information about collaboration in the workplace.

My initial reaction was to write about relationships in the workplace and how people collaborate with each other to get work done.

 This brought me to Jim Tamm’s website.

Jim and another fellow have written a book called Radical Collaboration. They make the distinction between two types of workplaces:

1. The Red Zone

2. The Green Zone

See if you can tell which zone your workplace is in!

If your workplace is a Red Zone you will probably not be experiencing much collaboration and in fact you may well be working in an environment characterized by turf wars and conflict.

Now, if you are fortunate enough to be working in a Green Zone organization you will notice such qualities as trust, optimism and goodwill among your colleagues.

Green Zones are fun places to work and people who work there share a vision and value collaboration. They also have a strong sense of teamwork and the skills needed to make teamwork happen.

Jim Tamm has been working with organizations for over 15 years teaching collaborative skills in “highly adversarial Red Zones”.

Here are the five essential skills needed to create collaborative Green Zone work environments:

  • Think win-win
  • Speak the truth
  • Be accountable
  • Be self-aware and aware of others
  • Learn from conflict

Now, if you’d like to learn more about these five essential skills you’ll have to check out the book Radical Collaboration yourself. I haven’t read it but it looks very interesting.

While I was doing my research on collaboration I came across an interesting article on Creating a Collaborative and Comprehensible Workplaces in the journal.

I’ll say more about this next time.

Enjoy the rest of your week!                    Lesley


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