Putting the customer first and ensuring that all projects, actions and initiatives throughout the entire company fit in perfectly with the overall corporate strategy: that is what every management wants. However, almost no management succeeds in this and in most cases this is due to the traditional organization of the company: in departments, with each department neatly combined, closed off from the rest of the company.
Silos limit progress
Silos, that's how those closed departments are often called. We allocate a separate budget to each silo and the most frequently asked question for cross-departmental projects is: on whose budget do we book this? With silo thinking as a result.
A company set up in silos is struggling with projects which are primarily in the interest of one department rather than in the interest of the entire company. Departments want to be considered important and fight for their right to exist in boardrooms. There the weekly management meetings become inefficient. Employees spend a lot of time making presentations to convince executives that they add a lot of value to the company, but nothing is happening in the meantime.
More and more companies are happily opting for the (difficult!) Switch to multidisciplinary work to make. Such a step goes against all traditions, because you are going to pull employees (offline and online) from their department and let them work together with employees from other departments. Where we previously found that working with your own department was especially useful - being able to switch quickly, joining forces, etc. - it appears to be crucial to transcend the boundaries of your own department. Working together with colleagues from totally different disciplines increases the chance of a meaningful, cross-company cooperation that really fits in with the business strategy.
What is multidisciplinary collaboration?
This video briefly explains:
When you as a management decide to take the radical step towards multidisciplinary work, it is important to first create support among the management. That the managers in your company support the choice made and want to put their hands in the fire for it, is an important condition for a successful policy change.
Making the actual change can involve many activities. For example, you will have to make changes to the layout of your office or workplaces, but the necessary changes will also have to be made online (on your intranet or in the other tools that are used). Project teams get a different occupation, a number of projects are killed and a number of new project teams must see the light. A lot of changes that cost a lot of energy and time, but eventually lead to a much more fruitful business.
Because dealing with silo thinking has quite a few feet in the ground, many entrepreneurs use a business coach to help the company with the adjustment process. Business coaches are nowadays found in almost every region in the Netherlands that specialize in multidisciplinary organization of organizations (examples: business coach Den Bosch, business coach Utrecht). Because with such radical change measures a business coach often looks into your organization for a longer period and several times a week, it can do no harm to hire a coach who does not have to come from the other side of the country.