Essay on Organizational and Cultural Boundaries

Published: 2021/11/17
Number of words: 2150


Collaboration is defined as working on a project or task with one or more persons, as well as generating ideas or approaches (Doberstein 2016). Collaboration in the workplace necessitates interpersonal skills, communication skills, information sharing, and planning, and can take place in a traditional office or among members of a virtual team. Collaboration not only boosts productivity, but it also improves employee relationships. Additionally, brainstorming and sharing ideas are beneficial in developing unique solutions to complex problems. There are numerous ways to properly interact at work, and the skills and methods you use can lead to increased productivity and success.

According to Burns, Brand, and Millard (2010), in the context of a globalized Knowledge Society and Knowledge Economy, it is critical to consider new types of work organization as well as new avenues for ideas to flow across sectors and countries. Individual enterprise, they argue, is no longer adequate, and the development of social capital is essential for promoting entrepreneurship and regional development.

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Collaboration advantage, according to Cao and Zhang (2010), is defined as the deliberate gains received from partnering as well as the generation of knowledge required by such relationships. It has to do with the required collective outcomes of collaborative action, which could have been difficult to attain if individuals, departments, or even entire companies worked in isolation. It is critical to integrate the various resources and expertise of one individual or organization with those of others in order to achieve synergy. Collaborative inertia, on the other hand, is a concept. Collaborative inertia, according to Huxham and Vangen (2000), occurs when the rate at which consequences from inter-organizational linkages are achieved is substantially lower than projected. They said that at such sluggish rates of advancement, the participants become enraged, and that once this occurs, the perils of collaboration begin to outweigh the risks of individual activities.

One of the reasons organizations choose to collaborate is to share resources. Because resources are limited, organizations frequently collaborate in order to achieve their defined goals and objectives, which would be impossible to fulfill with their own limited resources. Combining financial, human, and technological resources is a common way to do this. A common example is an inter-business collaboration to bring a product to market, in which one company commits to providing the product while the other provides logistical access to the market. Collaborations between the corporate and public sectors are also widespread, such as in the provision of security services. Organizations also aim to collaborate on the basis of risk sharing. Organizations collaborate to share the risk of project failure because the costs of failure are too high for them to bear alone, such as collaboration between organizations that invest heavily in research and development.

Efficiency is essential for any organization’s success. In order for a corporation to maximize revenues, efficiency refers to completing activities with the least amount of resource waste, also known as optimum resource utilisation. Economies of scale, outsourcing specific operations, operational restraint, and efficient coordination of activities are all common ways to increase efficiency. Private-public partnerships are a common example of collaboration for efficiency. Governments generally consider private companies to be more efficient than public ones, resulting in the promotion of cooperation between the two sectors by governments.

In order to achieve organizational efficiency, coordination and consistency are critical. Coordination is the process of bringing together diverse individuals or items with the goal of achieving a unified goal or impact in order to meet an organization’s goals. When companies pool their resources on the premise of coordinating activities and maintaining consistency, they eliminate duplication, omissions, divergence, and counter-production. While some collaborations are formed with the objective of achieving a common goal, others are developed with the goal of mutual learning, such as the automobile company’s employees working as trainers for their materials suppliers. One of the most fundamental motivations for corporations to interact is moral obligation. Health promotion, economic development, crime, poverty, violence, narcotics, and other societal challenges cannot be addressed by a single institution.

In a study to investigate and comprehend the importance of student contact in successful collaborative learning throughout a university course, Vuopala, Hyvönen, and Järvelä (2016) discovered that interactions were more related to groups than tasks. Collaborative learning, according to Dillenbourg (1999), is a situation in which two or more people learn or attempt to learn something together. Virtual collaborative learning is enabled by the use of computers; that is, learners collaborate in an integrated manner while sitting at separate locations with their computers.

Successful virtual collaborative learning is dependent on the learning outcomes, which are classified as declarative, procedural, situative, or strategic knowledge by De Jong and Ferguson-Hessler (1996). When participants in a partnership exchange these varied knowledge perspectives among themselves, success is attained (Kopp & Mandl, 2006). Latané, Williams, and Harkins (1979) emphasized the importance of members participating and taking responsibility in group activities by expressing their opinions and defending their assertions. Despite this, they recognized social laziness and free riding as frequent threats to all types of group cooperation.

In conclusion, collaboration is a crucial component of how businesses carry out their operations. It’s also gaining traction in today’s academic world, with various institutions considering collaborative virtual learning approaches to facilitate information exchange and dissemination among students. Access to resources, risk sharing, organizational efficiency, learning, and a coordinated approach to tasks are all advantages of collaborations. It’s also important to be aware of the drawbacks of collaboration, which include issues negotiating a single aim, communicating, developing common operation modes, and managing perceived power inequalities, among other things. Aside from the aforementioned issues, there are also the obstacles of managing accountability, preserving a suitable level of independence, and the practical difficulties of collaborating with people in geographically remote areas (Huxham and Vangen, 2000)

Collaborative Leadership

Collaboration is a management method in which members of a leadership team work together across departments to make decisions and keep their firm running smoothly (Lawrence 2017). This style of management has gained popularity among CEOs in recent years, replacing the conventional top-down leadership model, in which high-level executives made decisions that were then transmitted down to employees without explanation of how or why those decisions were made. Businesses gain from the collaborative leadership model, as opposed to the old top-down technique (Cleveland & Cleveland, 2018). It fosters a sense of unity among top-level executives, allowing them to make quick business decisions, build and maintain the organization’s fundamental beliefs, and strategically tackle problems as a single, cohesive team. Employees will learn that they, too, should approach their work in a collaborative, team-oriented manner by embracing collaboration at this level.

Members of a leadership team work across groups to make decisions and keep their companies running smoothly in collaborative leadership. The technique has been popular among managers in recent years, replacing the old top-down leadership method of the past, in which high-level executives made decisions that were then transmitted down to staff without explanation of how or why such decisions were made (Chrislip, 2002) Embracing members requires making sure that everyone in the partnership feels comfortable and welcome. It also entails paying close attention to ensuring that new members are onboarded. With an ever-changing membership, for example, the ongoing rearrangement of institutions and the shifting work duties for individuals, collaboration is by nature not static. Introducing a new member can be viewed as an opportunity for a paradigm shift from time to time. However, maintaining continuity and persuading new members to take ownership of already established ideals and activities is a recurring challenge.

Partnership managers assume a leadership role in involving members, which includes efforts targeted at addressing inequities that obstruct the shared goal. There will always be issues where some partners are more important than others, resulting in inequalities that must be addressed. As a result, partnership managers are faced with the leadership responsibility of defining the appropriate level of equity and then maintaining a balance. Mobilizing members refers to a partnership manager’s capacity to inspire individuals and the entire firm to foster collaboration. The leadership in this scenario is focused on ensuring that all members benefit from their engagement. As a result, leaders must establish and maintain a functional link between members and the group so that they can feel a sense of belonging.

Empowering members entails establishing an infrastructure that allows people and organizations to participate in collaborative efforts. In this situation, the partnership manager’s leadership responsibility is to build a structure that allows individuals to participate in the cooperation. Empowering others also entails bringing people together. As a result, the leader should assist members in communicating in face-to-face interactions, such as meetings. Getting people to interact, according to Useem (2001), is a crucial leadership task. Individuals with a wide range of abilities, backgrounds, and experiences come together to collaborate. A leader therefore should ensure that the members have the time to understand all information as they make arrangements for any intended form of interactions.

Structure in a collaboration refers to the organization, its associated individuals and the structural inter-connections between them. Structure is an important driver of the way agenda are shaped and implemented. According to Murrel (1997) leadership and structure are the same concepts with much of the influence of a leader being dependent upon the way that organization structure affects the potential for relational collaborations.

There is a varied extent to which structures and certain cases, the members of a collaboration may have the independence to establish a partnership in any manner they deem fit and appropriate. In some cases, the designs are deliberate, for example, a regeneration meeting that would involve several municipalities, where the members are free to discuss the way, they would design the structures to appeal to related groups to be involved in the partnership.

Processes are essential to any collaboration since they aid in the alignment and execution of a partnership’s goals. Workshops, committees, and seminars are seen to be examples of tools that can be used to facilitate communication within collaborations. Processes can take many different forms and shapes, and they can be significant for a variety of reasons. For example, the way and frequency with which members of a cooperation interact is a well-known component of leadership through processes. In a similar vein, certain processes enable members to share information and gain a better understanding of difficulties within their partnerships. Processes are as well a way of empowering members to discuss on the matters of interest to the partnership’s course. Workshops and seminars, for example, equip members with the skills necessary to communicate their agenda.

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Any collaboration’s agenda is more likely to be shaped by the participants. Individuals, groups, and organizations can all be participants in collaborations. Those with the power and knowledge to set and carry out a collaboration’s agenda have the necessary characteristics to take the lead. The leadership role is not under the control of the participants.

To sum up, cooperation requires leadership in the same way that every other organization does. As a result, partnership administrators must guarantee that espouse members feel welcome and capable of taking ownership of the collaboration’s principles. The leader should try to involve, empower, and mobilize the members as much as possible. They can accomplish this by ensuring that correct structures and processes are in place, as well as allowing members to participate in the collaboration’s initiatives.


Burns, H.K., Brand, S. and Millard, L., 2010. Leveraging differences for collaborative advantage: enhancing student learning through an international educational collaboration. International journal of nursing education scholarship, 7(1).

Cao, M. and Zhang, Q., 2010. Supply chain collaborative advantage: a firm’s perspective. International Journal of Production Economics, 128(1), pp.358-367.

Chrislip, D.D., 2002. The collaborative leadership fieldbook (Vol. 255). John Wiley & Sons.

Fitzgerald, S.P., Murrell, K.L. and Newman, H.L., 2001. Appreciative inquiry: The new frontier. Organization development: Data driven methods for change, pp.203-221.

Huxham, C. and Vangen, S., 2000. Leadership in the shaping and implementation of collaboration agendas: How things happen in a (not quite) joined-up world. Academy of Management journal, 43(6), pp.1159-1175.

Useem, M., 2001. The Leadership Lessons of Mount Everest. Harvard Business Review, 79(9), pp.51-57.

Vuopala, E., Hyvönen, P. and Järvelä, S. (2016) ‘Interaction forms in successful collaborative learning in virtual learning environments’, Active Learning in Higher Education, 17(1), pp. 25–38. doi: 10.1177/1469787415616730.

Lawrence, R. L. (2017). Understanding collaborative leadership in theory and practice. New Directions for Adult and Continuing Education2017(156), 89-96.

Cleveland, M., & Cleveland, S. (2018). Building Engaged Communities—A collaborative leadership approach. Smart Cities1(1), 155-162.

Hsieh, J. Y., & Liou, K. T. (2018). Collaborative leadership and organizational performance: Assessing the structural relation in a public service agency. Review of Public Personnel Administration38(1), 83-109.

Reynolds, S., Tonks, A., & MacNeill, K. (2017). Collaborative leadership in the arts as a unique form of dual leadership. The Journal of Arts Management, Law, and Society47(2), 89-104.

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