Collaboration: why it’s important to collaborate better
Agencies should make your work life easier, inspire you, be fun to work with and ultimately make you look good. At Forever Beta, that’s what we do—for your sakes and ours.
Good and effective work shouldn’t be painful to achieve. Life’s too short to not enjoy the creative process. In our experience, an integral ingredient to achieving these things is collaboration. Here’s 5 reasons why it’s so important and 5 tips on how to collaborate better. Hopefully you’ll find them useful.
The benefits of better collaboration...
If clients and agencies could change one thing about working with each other, both would improve communication¹. Collaborating helps both parties achieve a common goal of more meaningful and effective communication. It keeps the dialogue open and has a positive trickle-down effect on all aspects of running a successful project.
A quicker and more reactive agency
By collaborating on an on-going basis, turnaround times can be improved from start to end. Briefs will be clearer, feedback quicker and sign-offs smoother. Collaboration tools also make things, like file-sharing, more speedy. In-document collaboration makes projects, especially international ones, much easier.
A more organised team and project
It’s not rocket science; better communication means everyone knows what’s going on with the project and what they need to do. Having one clear central shared hub to access files and collaborate also helps. Better collaboration enables all to be more efficient with their time and resources.
Improved quality of work
The resulting output from any project will undoubtedly reap the rewards from a collaborative team. Collaboration encourages the best blend of talents and minds to be involved—on both sides of the relationship. It breeds more honest conversations and helps to shut down blind alleys or open up new avenues to the betterment of the work.
Stronger client-agency relationships
To collaborate is ‘to work together, especially in a joint intellectual effort, to achieve a common goal’. The nature of collaboration assumes an equal role from both parties—one cannot succeed without the other. It fosters openness and transparency which is great for building trusted and lasting relationships.
Embrace the concept
For collaboration to really work, you need to throw yourself into it. Remain open-minded and relish the opportunity to be more ingrained in the process and the resulting work.
Let technology help you
Re-appraise the collaboration tools and technology that you use with your agency—there are lots out there such as Slack and Basecamp. We at Forever Beta use Google Apps for Work. Features such as in-doc collaboration and sharing, through Drive and Hangout (video conferencing), have fundamentally changed the way we collaborate with clients and colleagues, globally.
Spend more time together
Absence doesn’t always make the heart grow fonder. Nothing beats face-to-face collaboration, this time can be much more productive for the whole team. It should leave the agency focused on the task in hand and the client’s expectations well managed. Naturally, regular check-ins via phone or Hangout keeps the project on track and at pace.
Impart all the knowledge you have, both in and outside of the marketing department, from market research to customer anecdotes. Agencies can only be as good as the brief they’re given. Also, share your agenda. Be open about what it is you really want to achieve, even if they’re personal goals—agencies can often help you.
Build it into your process
From timings to feedback, ensure the way you do things has collaboration baked in. For example, we usually begin projects with a full team kick-off session to write the brief together and brainstorm potential thought-starters. We also tend to share work earlier, to get to the right solution more quickly and efficiently.
If you have any strategic, creative or innovation challenges and want to work with us, get in touch with Elizabeth – she’d love to hear from you.