“Cobuild your project”. This term has gone around consulting firms all over the world. Working together to transform businesses is the essence of consultants. The real question is more complex: co-build, yes! But how to do more than just a marketing hook?
This article aims to highlight the importance of collaboration in developing a sustainable transformation. We have identified some important points to implement a method based on collaboration and interactivity.
1. A new routine for a new method
The development of a transformation in collaboration with your client starts with a good personal organization. Cobuilding is a wide and deep process, you need to combine your daily routines with this additional workload: it may take a bit of time, but with practice, you will quickly find your marks and processes!
2. Engage your customers from the diagnosis
When focusing on the cobuilding process, the first step not to be missed is the development of the diagnosis. This diagnosis is the result of a first collaboration with your client. Push it to the limit and build the foundation of a healthy relationship and trust.
Arriving with an already prepared solution without consulting your client is a mistake … First, because the client needs to feel involved in the project and because he wants a solution for him, not a lambda method. Of course, it can be tempting, it’s cheaper and you know what you’re doing… But, on the first hand, you might end up facing many objections, you will have lost time developing a proposal without results. On the other hand, this meeting is a good opportunity to create a diagnosis fitting your customers expectations and based on collaboration (and, therefore, to make him an actor and to engage him in your project, even before launching it).
A collaborative workshop for these first meetings with stakeholders can be an axis of reflection. Organizing different activities should then allow you to establish a climate of trust through the release of everyone’s word and an in-depth expression of the need.
3. Initiate changes with the client and collaborators
You have made the diagnosis with your customers, through collaborative activities that will have led them to really contribute. Now, give your customers the opportunity to be part of their transformation! The added value will be all the more important and the deliverables are likely to be better designed (at least closer to their expectations).
4. Innovate by using tools, but also methods
In the cobuilding process, innovation is not just taking advantage of technological advances in a more agile way than bigger groups. You can (must) also innovate in your collaboration method with your customers. Thus, for example, you can freed the word through activities that promote speech or protect identities (Beekast offers such activities for example). But you can also use many collaborative tools to get closer to your customers.
5. Engage clients to increase productivity
The transformation of a company affects all levels, all teams and all trades. So that the mission takes place in the best conditions and that it is approved by all the collaborators, their implication is overriding.
Interactivity is a great ally in this process as it improves engagement. And, by your customers commitment during your mission, you will have, de facto, a better adhesion of all the stakeholders.
The freedom of speech allows to promote the exchange of information and to highlight the appreciations and doubts of each. All of these elements allow an increase in the contribution, which is accompanied by an improvement in motivation and a clear time saving in the assimilation of the changes related to the transformation.
Your mission, if you accept it, is to make your client actor before the beginning of your mission and until the next one! Making your client actor means working with more engaging methods as soon as the need is qualified. You will create the project membership, suggest more relevant recommendations, and therefore, will be more likely to win the contract.
Nothing changes during the mission, the rule remains the same, it is by involving all stakeholders that you will make the most of this collaboration.