Collaborative projects let your work with a bunch of interesting people and learn from them. Furthermore, making thing happen in a faster way. The most important asset in this kind of collaborative projects is people and how you deal with them, orchestrating every member of the team so they push in the same direction, constantly producing positive results.
The main reason why collaborative projects fail is that they’re not balanced either correctly lead (I failed in this task, eventually). Another reason is that they’re orchestrated by amateurs (I failed here too). The, in collaborative projects, when just one single person fails, the whole thing doesn’t work.
Collaborative projects – fundamentals
Ignore these fundamentals at your own risk:
1. Too much people doing a few tasks is something not sustainable, nor affordable. Keep a low number of professionals involved in the project. It will depend on the size and importance of the project of course, but most of the times are too many people involved without a critical role play.
2. Do not include anybody for political or “friendly-related” reasons.
3. Do not look for many external points of view only because it can help you to see from different perspectives. One or two approaches are more than enough.
4. Avoid over-communication, but above over-communication. Also, avoid over-information. Not everyone has to be involved in every single task, email or conference call. People don’t need to be in the kitchen so they can eat in the restaurant. Got it?
5. At least on personas should be accountable for the whole thing, this person should be in the centre of the collaborative project. Perhaps you need to choose the person with more experience, charisma and wit, this is the kind of person that you need to lead and drive collaborative projects. The same person will decide the KPIs. deadlines and assign and distribute tasks.
6. Another person, besides the leader, should have a clear idea about how the leader is going to do the work. And also how everyone else will collaborate with them, so the final goal is achieved.
7. When a collaborative project is running, new collaborators can be added only if they can bring a competitive advantage and positively modify the outcome.
8. Agree before starting on the framework and workflow for the project so everyone is on the same page.
9. Trust in the people you work with, empower and reward them in any way you can.