7 Workplace Collaboration Statistics That Will Have You Knocking Down Cubicles

August 19, 2014


Teamwork in the workplace can stimulate creativity, engagement and innovation, yet it remains one of those commonly under-utilized tools. Many of us are guilty of staying in our little nooks of expertise, comfy in our silos and never seeking out true collaboration. It’s easy to put your blinders on and get the job done, but that’s not what drives success, or growth, both individually and organizationally.

39% of surveyed employees believe that people in their own organization don’t collaborate enough. Tweet this Stat

So the drive is there, there is no mistaking that your workforce wants more collaboration, and sees a need for it. What they require now is the leadership to direct this change. Silos don’t come down on their own; a shift toward a more collaborative culture needs to come from the top, down.

About 75% of employers rate team work and collaboration as “very important”, yet only 18% of employees get communication evaluations at their performance reviews. Tweet this Stat. 

Again, this time in employers, we see that the need for collaboration is agreed upon, but it is not reflected in real implementation. Communication is the cornerstone of collaboration, but the vast majority of employees aren’t trained in effective workplace communications. Making this part of your continuous dialogue with employees can really lay the groundwork for successful collaboration. 

49% of Millennials support social tools for workplace collaboration. Tweet this Stat

In fact, about 40% of Millennials (who are soon to comprise the majority of the workforce) would even pay out of pocket for social collaboration tools to improve productivity. That’s how much they believe in the dream team of collaboration and technology.

97% of employees and executives believe lack of alignment within a team impacts the outcome of a task or project. Tweet this Stat

The ideal vision of teamwork looks like cogs in a machine, working together seamlessly. More often though, we end up with something more similar to an octopus flailing its limbs. Transparency and effective communication are the keys to true alignment. When everyone knows the objectives, and how everyone’s work contributes to the completion of those objectives, then alignment becomes real.

86% of employees and executives cite lack of collaboration or ineffective communication for workplace failures. Tweet this Stat. 

When communication breaks down, we start to see a lot of redundant or duplicate work, reduced quality and frustration among team members. Collaboration is like shining a light on all the nooks and crannies in which these issues start and fester. 

90% of employees who responded in a survey believe that decision-makers should seek other opinions before making a final decision, yet 40% of employees believe that decision makers “consistently failed” to seek another opinion. Tweet this Stat. 

Another disconnect between what we know is good for the organization, and what leaders are actually doing about it. Well-rounded, or collaborative decision-making is the obvious best choice, but it’s easier said than done. The more weigh-ins a decision maker has to deal with, the more complicated the decision becomes. That being said, the easy way out doesn’t engage, empower or validate workers. In fact, not including them in the decisions that affect them or their work can lead to higher stress levels.

Less than half of survey respondents said that their organizations discuss issues truthfully and effectively. Tweet this Stat. 

Author and workplace strategists, Nilofer Merchant, sums this one up perfectly in her book, The New How, as she talks about honest transparency:
“Everyone is better off when they know why decisions are made with as much accuracy as possible. It gives them an understanding of what matters and provides information on which to base the trade-offs constantly being made at every level. It also boosts buy-in and energy from the organization. When reasons behind decisions are not shared, the decisions can seem arbitrary and possibly self-serving. That is, they may seem like they are made for the good of the decision makers, rather than the good of the organization.”

Collaboration doesn’t have a shot without top-down buy-in. Truthfully, it’s too comfortable and easy for people to remain in their silos; the change has to be facilitated by leaders. These statistics indicate a pattern of leaders and employees seeming to be aware of the need for more and improved collaboration, but not really getting around the implementation of it. Is that true in your organization? 

Break down those comfortable barriers that keep collaboration from taking place. Take a demo of Clear Company’s stand-alone solutions that integrate and align to your company objectives.

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Sylvie Woolf
Sylvie Woolf
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