Communication Is Key
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Procter & Gamble (P&G) is focusing heavily on improving communication through the use of video, according to the company's CIO, Filippo Passerini. His staff is spread out around the world, which has made video the best way for IT employees to collaborate on projects.
"We are aggressive at deploying video collaboration, so [employees] can cooperate from any point," Passerini says. "Humans in person operate better than on e-mail or the phone." Passerini says using video has helped P&G do a better job of managing staff "on a per-unit cost basis."
Brand Velocity, a company that specializes in helping companies implement IT initiatives, urges its top-level employees to learn how to communicate in ways that facilitate effective collaboration among team members. One such example, says Brand Velocity CEO Jack Bergstrand, "is to [articulate] a clear enterprise model to make sure people are seeing a project in the same way." He adds that it's important to inform all IT team members of the key factors involved in projects--the "who, what, when, where and why"--to ensure that they understand the goals of any collaborative effort. "It sounds painfully simple, but it almost never happens in practice," Bergstrand says.