Simon Sinek recently said, “the responsibility of leadership is not to come up with all the ideas but to create an environment in which great ideas can thrive.” Every executive wants to create this environment in their company, and they all know it is extremely difficult to create. Although there is no silver bullet or magic sauce to this, there are some basic, practical guidelines that can help. This only happens, though, if the executives and managers try these collaboration habits over and over - together. Steve Jobs explains these disciplines as follows:

  1. Define teams over specific areas or projects. One person is in charge of this, another is responsible over that. They are not committees nor departments; they are teams created as needed. Clear teams, clear assignments.

  2. Teams meet weekly to discuss assigned projects. Some teams need to meet longer than others, but all the teams meet on a regular basis. Each team is responsible to facilitate their meetings well to discuss the agreed projects.

  3. Work from the same page & connect with other teams. Each team works from the same documents and 1 person goes between meetings to ensure all teams are on the same page (this is usually done by one of the executives, the COO or the Director of Operations).

  4. Everyone agrees to accountability in the meetings. Teamwork and trust is built on everyone committing to do what they said the would do without being checked on by others. Everyone goes to meetings ready to present and show without being asked.

  5. Provide time for ideas, brainstorming and discussion. Everyone at meetings participates and has professional debates as needed, so long as everyone agrees that most decisions are made by the employees, not the managers and executives. Gibe time in meetings for these discussions.

  6. Well facilitated meetings where ideas win the day. Every team leader needs to learn how to facilitate these great meetings where ideas flourish and ideas trump hierarchy. without well facilitated meetings, all this falls apart, and your best people and their ideas will leave.

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