Originally published April 27, 2015

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The words collaborate, collaboration, and collaborative are often used without much detail about what is meant. Here are use cases for collaboration to answer the question, “when you say collaborate, what exactly do you want to do?”

COLLABORATION: Communicate, Obtain, Locate, Learn, Assist, Build, Offer, Resolve, Ask, Transfer, Innovate, Onboard, Network

I want to:

1. Communicate

  • Inform the organization about your activities. plans, and progress
  • Interact with colleagues
  • Solicit input, feedback, advice
  • Relax, refresh, relieve tension, laugh

2. Obtain

  • Gain assistance from others
  • Find out what others are doing
  • Retrieve information
  • Receive answers to questions

3. Locate

  • Locate subject matter specialists
  • Find documents, credentials, references, sites, official methods, lessons learned, proven practices
  • Find needed resources

4. Learn

  • Learn more about a topic
  • Deepen expertise
  • Keep current on the latest news

5. Assist

  • Respond to a request
  • Respond to a client request for information. proposal, or support
  • Submit a proposal
  • Deliver a product, project, service, or client engagement
  • Provide thought leadership

6. Build

  • Develop and deliver eminence and thought leadership
  • Write a document or presentation
  • Build and deliver a product or service

7. Offer

  • Answer questions
  • Provide points of view, proven practices, lessons learned, examples, official methods
  • Get staffed on a project or client engagement
  • Lead an effort
  • Praise, recognize, and thank colleagues

8. Resolve

  • Identify issues
  • Solve problems
  • Fix something which is broken

9. Ask

  • Ask questions
  • Request advice
  • Submit a query or request

10. Transfer

  • Transfer knowledge
  • Share links, insights, lessons learned, tips, tricks, techniques
  • Contribute reusable content

11. Innovate

  • Develop new and better ways of serving clients
  • Solicit ideas
  • Manage the innovation process
  • Improve existing products, services, processes, and tools
  • Invent new products, services, processes, and tools

12. Onboard

  • Onboard new hires or team members
  • Get oriented as a new hire or team member
  • Orient new clients

13. Network

  • Connect to others with similar interests
  • Work together as part of a team
  • Connect multiple organizations to deliver services as one


Written by

Knowledge Management Author and Speaker, Founder of SIKM Leaders Community, Community Evangelist, Knowledge Manager https://sites.google.com/site/stangarfield/

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