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The Three “R’s” of Effective Collaboration

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By Rosemarie Yancosek, Jeff Winton Associates Consultant

Communicating in the business world can be a delicate dance, whether working inside a corporation or for an agency that provides essential services to help companies achieve their goals.


In my career, I have worked on both sides of the fence. I have found that there are certain attributes that can keep important avenues of communication open and lead to stronger and more effective collaborations no matter where you work. 

Be Respectful

Everything begins with respect. Although you cannot usually pick your coworkers, you can do more than just hope that there will be mutual respect. 

  • Tell your bosses that you appreciate their guidance and your direct reports that you value their ideas, even if different from your own point of view. 

  • If you work with clients, respect their internal processes and the behind-the-scenes factors driving certain requests. 

  • By nurturing a collaborative environment, colleagues are more apt to respect each other and enjoy their time working together.


Be Relatable

Most of us spend more time at work than in any other activity. Being relatable to your co-workers can foster stronger bonds at work.  

  • Share tidbits about your own life even as you are asking about a colleague’s weekend. 

  • Treat employees, clients and managers as people versus simply as coworkers, and you may grow to understand better what makes them tick. 

  • Being relatable can also help you tailor your interactions and your approaches to different challenges. 


Be Resilient

Few things are worse in business than when team members have narrow, unyielding views on how a project should be handled. 

  • Take the lead in ensuring that everyone on the team is heard. 

  • Be open to diversity of thought that could move projects in directions not previously considered. 

  • Lend a hand to others on tight deadlines when your expertise could help move things along more quickly.

  • If working with a client, always close a meeting by asking: “What else can I do for you?”


The bottom line: Practicing the three “R’s” every day can yield big rewards. It can increase productivity as well as make your workday more enjoyable in an environment where everyone feels appreciated and valued. 

Rosemarie Yancosek is a seasoned U.S. and global healthcare communications professional with extensive experience in developing and leading strategic public relations campaigns across diverse therapeutic areas. She has also managed crisis and litigation communications for corporate and product issues for many pharmaceutical and healthcare companies.

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