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How well do the members of your team work with each other across silos?

SmartPulse — our weekly nonscientific reader poll in SmartBrief on Leadership — tracks feedback from more than 190,000 business leaders. We run the poll question each week in our e-newsletter.

Last week, we asked: How well do the members of your team work with each other across silos?

  • Very well — there are no silos on my team: 15.08%
  • Well — there are a few minor silos: 50.35%
  • Not well — they have a hard time working cross-functionally: 29.47%
  • Poorly — they barely know one another: 5.1%

Breaking down the walls. We’re all on the same team. Ensuring silos don’t exist (and removing them when they do) is a great task for a leader. The people in the silos typically aren’t aware of how isolated they are but you as the leader have a different perspective. You can see missed coordination opportunities across teams easier than they can. When you do, take those opportunities to suggest the collaboration. Better yet, actively prevent silos from forming. You can do so by suggesting people seek each other out (versus just giving out answers), recruiting from other teams, sending people from your team to work in other departments and staffing projects with people from across the company. The broader the networks you help your people form, the better the organization’s performance will be.

Mike Figliuolo is managing director of thoughtLEADERS and author of “One Piece of Paper: The Simple Approach to Powerful, Personal Leadership.”