Do you describe yourself as professionally accessible? Particularly when collaborating with cross functional colleagues from professional disciplines other than your own.
The keys to your professional success incorporate your awareness of where, when, how and why scenarios are created/permitted which contribute to communication and collaboration disconnects. Otherwise, you never can be sure you and your colleagues contribute to the most successful outcome when serving each other and your clients.
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Is it time to move one millimeter forward and become more professionally accessible to cross functional colleagues? The choice is yours.
You have experienced these scenarios yourself, regardless of whether you are an early, mid-, or senior career professional.
- First, because these mindset and behavior patterns, often unconsciously, perpetuate barriers between professional disciplines. The more you reinforce these barriers, the thicker your professional silo walls become.
- Next, when you participate in these discipline-specific, professional accessibility-limiting scenarios, you contribute to group think. Consequently, you reinforce status quo, discipline-specific mindset and behavior. Even when you realize what you are doing.
- Also, even if you are not responsible for running that meeting scenario, you step back from asking questions or redirecting energy. Why continue to hold yourself, and your colleagues, back from moving one millimeter forward? Positively. Together.
Becoming more professionally accessible to cross functional colleagues starts with 1:1 interactions, that build over time.
Start small. Reach out to a cross functional colleague on your team. Set up a time to meet: NOT to water-cooler gossip or bash other colleagues’ behavior. Rather, meet to discover more about each other’s professional disciplines. Keep in mind that you both process information differently, depending on your respective disciplines’ mindset. As a result, what some of you dismiss as unimportant will be keenly insightful to others on your team. Compare and contrast and discuss and enjoy.
Then, expand that dialogue to three cross functional colleagues. Continue the conversation and start asking each other all-important how, when, why, where questions. As you become more comfortable, confident, and conversant regarding each other’s professional disciplines, you carry this learning into your meetings. Everyone else on your team will notice the impact you make by the difference you create.
The less dependent we are on our professional disciplines to set us apart from one another, the more professionally accessible we become. Together. One millimeter at a time.
Searching for a coaching catalyst to get you unstuck professionally? Looking for a meeting or event speaker focused on what is new and next? Then engage me to present a One Millimeter Mindset ™ program! Delivered virtually or in-person.
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Babette Ten Haken’s One Millimeter Mindset™ programs catalyze people who solve problems differently to collaborate more successfully. Become more professionally visible, cross-functionally relevant, and strategically valuable as you create and implement innovative and robust business outcomes together. Babette is a business-oriented STEM professional, qualitative Voice of the Customer facilitator, PMI-certified Wicked Problem Solver, and Six Sigma Green Belt (Quality). She is a member of the ASQ, SHRM, PMI, the National Speakers Association. Her playbook of cross-functional collaboration, Do YOU Mean Business? is available on Amazon.com. Contact Babette here. Image source: Adobe Stock.