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What Is Strategy Without Cross-functional Collaboration?

Updated: Nov 8, 2023

Prior to the new year most businesses did a recap of where they stand going into 2020. Projects were reviewed to see what the next big project would be or what would be an easy win projects. If a culture of cross-functional collaboration is not considered as a strategy for 2020, I would urge you to consider this strategy.

In 2015 Harvard Business Journal reported that among 95 teams in 25 leading corporations, 75 percent of their cross-functional teams were dysfunctional. Severely hampering the firm’s’ ability to make progress on critical initiatives, efficiently, and effectively. Resulting in increased project costs.

The world is evolving at record speeds, and companies are looking to remain competitive. Moving forward, it’s not only important, it’s vital that companies learn new models and best practices for successful cross-functional collaboration.

Cross-functional collaboration is the act of involving multiple functions to reach a goal. So, why should you collaborate across functions?

I have found there are major benefits. Here are four benefits to consider:

1. Collaboration builds a culture that encourages employee engagement which yields knowledge sharing, and networking. This benefit increases employee performance. Through collaboration additional information is gained by each participant and communication skills are sharpened.

2. Cross-Functional Collaboration gives project teams the opportunity to analyze a holistic viewpoint. Rework is undesirable and costly. Project teams that understand the end goal and those that need to be involved have a leg up in meeting expectations.

3. This practice encourages communication between diverse groups of people and levels within an organization. Buy-in becomes much easier and consideration of diversity helps challenge perspectives and can yield innovative ideas.

4. As cross-functional collaboration is practiced within an organization it helps to build partnerships. Partnerships cultivate trust and accountability. Employees that work in an environment of trust and accountability reach goals more efficiently.

Building a cross-functional collaboration environment can be challenging, but once established the benefits outweigh the initial hard work. Cross-functional collaboration is a conduit to help businesses communicate and execute well. Consider this strategy for 2020 and for an added benefit, to learn more or sign up for BlackFin Group’s one day ‘Collaboration Lab” workshop and build more effective project teams, contact Monique at


Tabrizi, B. (2015, June 23). 75% of Cross-Functional Teams Are Dysfunctional. Harvard Business Review Home.

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