Same Team, Twice the Output, No Kidding

Automation, AI and Collaboration are buzzwords and the future. Here’s a simple way to unleash them today.Your team is probably doing half of what it can. Why?

 Here’s a list of things you and your team probably do every day.
1. Sit through long meetings to either update or receive updates from each other, other teams or departments.

2. Put together information gathered from diverse sources into coherent reports.

3. Understand or explain your processes or basic subject matter to/from a more/less experienced colleague.

4. Turn goals into tasks for the day, track team availability and allocate work.

5. Travel to distant locations just to validate progress.

6. Solve challenges as they come up individually or as a group.

7. Provide direction and take decisions.
Only two of the above seven in fact truly do justice to the talent you have in your company. How much time do you and your team spend on the other five?

Cognitive Collaboration is the magic that happens when your teams’ cognitive capabilities exceed those of all the team members put together. When this happens your team turns challenges into opportunities, beats timelines and takes great decisions. But in order to achieve this, they need to be on the same page and have the time to brainstorm on challenges and decisions as they come up. If your team is spending between 10-50% of their time on the first five items in the above list they have a very small window for cognitive collaboration because meaningful collaboration around ideas will be sporadic. If they spend more than 50% of their time on these tasks they will meaningfully collaborate only when there’s an emergency and sometimes not even then.

The first step to cognitive collaboration is a great collaboration. Tasks are well defined, deadlines are clear and logical, dependencies are visible, data and documents are organized and accessible and communication is organized into task or project-based streams. Sounds simple but it’s surprising how many different tools companies deploy to achieve just this one goal. Many companies have different tools for document management, project management and collaboration in addition to their ERP. Even with all of that excel sheets, emails and long meetings continue to be ubiquitous. Your people are probably burning much of their time on activities that require a fraction of their full creative, analytical or inter-personal capabilities. Great collaboration firstly makes individuals more productive, secondly brings large teams spread across functions onto the same page, both essential conditions for cognitive collaboration

The next step is enabling your team to solve problems, make decisions and spend 90% of their time on just those two functions. The keys here are delegating data entry and automating information flow.  Every role benefits from single screen visibility. This includes a contextual transfer of organizational knowledge, performance reports, data gathered during execution, the latest version of documents, minutes of meetings and more. Our solution is tasks being auto-created based on a workflow and augmented with all necessary information but no clutter. Automation, AI, Contextual Access are all key, but once again Zvolv gives you the visibility without having to worry about how it is done.

Once you complete the first two steps you’ll see Cognitive Collaboration taking off on its own. You will now hold meetings to discuss ideas and solutions, not update each other. You will spot challenges early and mitigate issues before they happen. You can now start building a higher impact team by bringing in team members with different cognitive strengths but let’s save that for a later post.

Business Impact

The sheer magnitude of improvement when we have seen Cognitive Collaboration drive for clients across verticals has been an eye-opener. We’ve seen users of our Zvolv platform halve timelines, reduce costs and deliver more value with the exact same people. Throw us a business case and we’ll be happy to do a post on how cognitive collaboration can help.