One of the most exciting things with commerce in today’s world is the potential for a collaborative atmosphere. Even if members of your chain of command are spread across the United States you can instantly hop online and be working on a project in minutes. If you’ve ever had the inkling to link up with another human being for a business idea there’s literally never been a better time than right now.
With all that said, why aren’t you doing it in your own office?
Sure, you probably had a nice open office when you first started out. But along the line something may have changed – you get bogged down with work, perhaps, or everyone just gets stuck in their own ways. But somewhere down the line you forget to have real open conversations about your business.
Time to Change Back
A business that doesn’t adapt is a business that doesn’t stay open for long. It doesn’t necessarily mean you have to constantly unveil new products or entirely different methods of selling, but forgetting that the world is constantly evolving can be the death knell of any good company.
What prevents this oncoming onslaught of failure? Open conversation, for one. No matter how stuck in your ways you are, if your office promotes new ideas and conversations, somebody will bring up issues eventually. When they’re out in the open, you’re forced to deal with them instead of letting them linger and fester.
Don’t just assume everyone will speak their mind, though. There’s always that one person in the corner who refuses to speak as they are just too shy. There’s nothing wrong with that – except you really want to hear their opinions! Make sure everyone’s heard equally, no matter what it takes. Perhaps brainstorming the proper forum for new ideas should be your first order of conversation?
No Stone Unturned
Heck, sometimes it’s just way easier to discuss things online than in person, especially if everyone in the office is totally swamped with other work. But if you still want to take time to talk out new ideas and figure out problems, establish an online forum just for your team members.
This can also help organize everyone’s thoughts. If you have one topic of discussion, for example about an upcoming product launch, then people can easily respond to this in due time.
It’s easy to let these conversations slide, though, so you may need other avenues of discussion. Once a week (or two weeks, or whatever fits your schedule best) hold a round table talk and bring up any lingering doubts and potential points of growth. Make sure everyone’s who wants to talk is recognized and all viewpoints are heard, no matter how zany.
Keep in mind the big boss might not always be the best person to moderate these discussions. Find someone who’s really great at keeping a conversation going and who also knows how to properly recognize every speaker. Otherwise you might intimidate the more shy of the group into not talking!