According to a recent article from Microsoft Workplace Insights, employees who reach outside their silos gain skills faster and make ore sales.  But many companies aren’t built to function across teams, departments or divisions.  Here are three things Microsoft recommends doing to create cross-silo collaboration.

  • Develop and deploy cultural brokers. Look for people who already excel at interdepartmental collaboration and formalize their role of bridging gaps.  
  • Encourage people to ask the right questions.  Leaders can serve as role models by showing interest in what others are seeing and thinking.  You can also train employees to expand their ability and willingness to more frequently ask unbiased, open-ended questions.
  • Organize cross-silo dialogues.  Set up discussions that help employees see the world through colleagues’ or customers’ eyes.  Aim for face to face meetings that allow time to listen to another’s way of thinking.