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Use AI to Benefit from Collaborative Intelligence

Organizations are encountering tighter deadlines and increased turbulence in their markets, driving them to form smaller teams with complex challenges for improving teamwork. The upshot, distributed memberships, shorter spans of working together, including members from multiple teams & organisations with no prior history of collaboration. In business collaborative intelligence describes heterogeneous networks of people interacting to produce intelligent outcomes for improving business performance.
The Team Reality
A team is more than just a loose collection of people forced to work together. Working in the “team-as-a-whole” is what makes a team powerful. You do not bring people together to accomplish less. The whole of a team is bigger than the sum of its parts, a popular expression often used. Team potential exists as a consequence of the human potential brought together in a team. As a result, the possibility of a vast reservoir of latent knowledge, intelligence, skills, talent and capabilities exist within a team. The more these latent resources can be activated and mobilised, the better a team will perform, whether it’s improving manufacturing, sales, service, revenue or profits.
Artificial Intelligence (AI)
AI provides a foundation for gathering important team information, identifying areas of strength and weakness within the team, correctly matching personality, skill & experience with tasks and providing diagnostic tools to help leverage the right action. Intégro Learning SA, a team specialist company, has pioneered a team AI software operating system called, ‘TeamingExcel®’ for such purposes.
Make the Whole Visible to Everyone
Intégro’s TeamExcel® software provides a “Line of Sight” for everyone to see what is working well and what is not working well and who is involved. It gets the whole team involved in the process of discussion and decision-making. It supports the very strong human need to belong and team processes so that they can act and feel like a team. The software inculcates a team-conscientiousness mind-set in all the individual members of the team.
Catalyse Rich Conversations
Collaboration can be thought of as a network of different conversations. It provides the “juice” you need to support the essential creative energy of teamwork. It is critical to consciously create time and space for the team to have multiple, rich conversations between meetings. “After dinner” conversations on non-routine topics like what really motivates you, the current organisation culture etc. could be appropriate conduits.
Amplify Energy
When a team meets in physical space, the room itself serves as a “container” which amplifies the energy of the team. The Intégro TeamingExcel® software serves as a virtual container because it enables dynamic brainstorming and sharing of ideas. In addition it makes possible to “spotlight” and celebrate individual and team accomplishments or where something interesting is happening. It also facilitates “team-to-team” networking and disseminates “hot” news for everyone to know. It’s a way to energise everyone and channel the energy in the right direction.
Create Tracks & Footprints in Physical Space
In a co-located team, the physical space and artefacts in it serve as reminders that the team exists, is real and important. Without these, a distributed team can disappear off the radar screens of the organisation and team members can lose a sense of themselves as part of the team. The software enables team artefacts to give a virtual team visibility in team members’ individual minds and physical space. It serves as an anchor to keep the team focussed on why the team exists and what it is accountable for. The software becomes the “container” channel and virtual corridor where team members “meet”, and touch base with each other.
Build & Maintain Conducive Conditions
Conducive conditions for building and maintaining self-esteem is essential. The way I feel about myself and others in the team will either facilitate the process to activate potential or not. An attitude of I’m OK, You’re OK is the attitude and gateway to access potential. A healthy self-esteem indicates a high level of self-acceptance brought about by a high level of self-worth and self-respect. It is the way a truly autonomous person feels and as a result will activate his/her potential. Conditions in a team can either be the catalyst for building or the destroying self-esteem. Giving recognition for any contribution, no matter how small, stimulates self-worth and enabling people to act out their commitments to self and the team that builds self-respect. Self-esteem is the source of confidence, reinforces ownership of actions, stimulates critical and creative thinking, and enables us to activate our individual potential.
Sources: Johan Cronjé; Specialist Team Coach, Intégro Learning South Africa; Lisa Kimball; Metasystems Deign Group