Building a Collaborative Enterprise

Source: Paul Adler, Charles Heckscher, and Laurence Prusak, Harvard Business Review, Vol. 89 nos. 7 & 8, July-August 2011
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…Collaborative communities encourage people to continually apply their unique talents to group projects–and to become motivated by a collective mission, not just personal gain or the intrinsic pleasures of autonomous creativity. By marrying a sense of common purpose to a supportive structure, these organizations are mobilizing knowledge workers’ talents and expertise in flexible, highly manageable group-work efforts. The approach fosters not only innovation and agility but also efficiency and scalability.

A growing number of organizations–including IBM, Citibank, NASA, and Kaiser Permanente–are reaping the rewards of collaborative communities in the form of higher margins on knowledge-intensive work. (The CSC divisions that applied the CMM most rigorously reduced error rates by 75% over six years and achieved a 10% annual increase in productivity, while making products more innovative and technologically sophisticated.)

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