Gone are the days when project collaboration was something synonymous with only large corporations. Nowadays, 'everybody' seems to be 'collaborating' and yes, pooling capital resources has something to do with it but it is not the only reason. Companies are very rapidly understanding and 'buying into the idea' of what I have coined as the 'pay-as-you-go-project-resource', this means that for a specific skill/skills a collaboration is worth thinking about. Some could might argue that this is what is referred to as outsourcing, but actually it is a bit more than that. When you outsource, the person/s come into the 'project arena' as a freelancer/consultant/contractor or whatever you want to call them, take up their portion of work get it done and leaves the scene. The onus of responsibility such as that of a full time employee could be seen as full-time time vs part-time/freelancer and we all know how that works!
Project collaboration be it long/short term is not only seen for the temporary acquisition of knowledge and skills but also a sort of an added opportunity or 'guarantee' backup marketing strategy for either or both companies involved. However, all of this has to be planned from the onset (as explained by Murray Newlands Forbes contributor) of the 'collaboration agreement', which is common practice or is it not? (that is a question to be viewed at another time, another blog). So maybe the questions to collaborators or those intending should be:
The above listed five points are in addition to the general questions that are usually asked prior to collaborating. The above five have been highlighted due to the degree to which they can either positively/negatively impact project work of a collaborative nature.
There are two main outcomes to a project-collaboration that goes wrong:
At the end of the day, you have decided to collaborate on a project for a specific reason so, does the other party know what this entails and vice versa. Presuming that part has been dealt with, does it really work for you?
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Tabitha O. Abiola is the CEO & Chief Principal Learning & Development Consultant of QuiSec-Projects, a spin-off from QuiSec Consulting.