We all have heard about how the internet can reduce costs and increase productivity in our work. We experience this in many ways but true group collaboration – the kind of collaboration that is likened to spontaneous conference room meetings, the office pop-in, brainstorming sessions, etc… – is often elusive in the world of online collaboration. Of course we are implying here that we are transcending the limits of a single office location to one where the collaborators are geographically disbursed – even across continents.
The capability for working this way is not perfect, but tools exist that allow us to instantly communicate, share documents, whiteboard, and even look each other in the eyes as we communicate and forge ahead. These tools are great, but like every new tool, it takes some getting used to and you have to know the proper etiquette. Knowing best practices and instilling them as part of your group collaboration culture will create successful experiences that will allow you and your organization to experience the promise of online collaboration.