Reality television is unreal. Team members are carefully chosen for maximum drama and then thrown into frenzied competition purely for entertainment. Thank goodness the business world does not take its team-building cues from Hollywood. Teamwork in the global marketplace is challenging enough without staged arguments and camera crews. The reality for a successful business team today is that to stay competitive it must operate with improved insight, tools and techniques.
In most businesses, teams are distributed in one way or another. They might be distributed across geographies and bring several languages and diverse cultures together. Some teams are distributed across industries with a variety of specialists brought together to solve problems or create new products and services. Team members may even extend beyond traditional company boundaries to include vendor, partner and even customer representatives. And in many cases, team members come from various levels across the business hierarchy, from seasoned executives to new staff and interns.
Technology of course, has had a huge impact in recent decades in changing how these diverse and dispersed groups of people work together. Physical barriers have collapsed with the rise of global networks and immediate, on-demand connectivity. Companies can bring together the best minds, no matter where they are in the world. Technology’s rapid advance has helped businesses learn the value of collaboration. Through the collaboration of many talents, backgrounds and experiences, companies today are progressing and tapping into innovation at remarkable speed. Consider technologies like the iPhone™ that bridges an amazing variety of interests and capabilities—music, video, podcasting, communication, time management, etc. Building such innovations requires technicians, designers, and thinkers from a wide range of backgrounds and expertise.
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