It’s no secret that things work better when people work together. Oftentimes the perception is that collaboration helps drive performance and results. That’s only part of the story. It also works in reverse order – performance and results drive collaboration.
In their recent HBR blog post, Winning, Losing and Collaboration, Teresa Amabile and Steve Kramer explored this phenomenon, highlighting the fact that when things are going well, people are more willing to overlook coworkers’ or teammates’ sh
ortcomings. When things aren’t going well, blame gets passed tempers flare and flaws that didn’t seem so important in good times take center stage.
“Not only is collaboration critical to high performance,” they wrote, “but maintaining high performance can be important to keeping collaboration going.”
So how do you maintain high performance?
Open lines of communication and positive feedback, for starters. People who feel good about what they are doing and know that their effort is appreciated are usually better team players.
As Amabile and Kramer wrote, “When organizations support and celebrate small wins, employees feel like winners; the mistrust and conflict that can accompany losing will be avoided. Without those interpersonal problems, it will be much easier to achieve consistent and effective collaboration.”