Half-day workshops 4hrs

Collaboration is a Team Sport: Why We Must All Become Collaboration Designers

Laïla von Alvensleben, Wout Hermans

What does good collaboration look like? In sports, high-performing teams have a skilled coach, different tactics, and trust between all members of the team. Similarly, in the workplace, high-performing teams are guided by a skilled facilitator, use proven methods to achieve their desired outcomes, and maintain a high level of trust. These ingredients are fundamental to collaborative intelligence—a new systematic approach that connects teams, taking insights and ideas from possibility to reality.


Designers are collaborative by nature, sharing inputs in design critiques, reviews, and beyond. Building trust and forming connections within a team is imperative for getting honest and constructive feedback. If people don't feel safe speaking up, they can't give honest feedback. Design doesn't work without a trusting environment. To change the status quo, we need to rebuild these outdated work environments and master the skills to do so.


The spaces in which we interact, both physical and digital, deeply influence how teams collaborate and their success. Leading people today takes knowing how to craft an engaging work experience—whether that’s in-person, remote, or a hybrid of both. It takes knowing how to invite inclusive participation. It requires crafting experiences that predictably and repeatedly connect your people to a common space, to shared goals, and to a purpose that they believe in. We call this emerging skill collaboration design—a thoughtful approach to facilitating conversations and enabling better collaborative experiences in our new ways of working. The time has come for us to become collaboration designers—knowledge workers who embrace collaboration design to bring purpose and intention to the collaboration process.


In this workshop, participants will learn how to cultivate visual thinking, develop relational intelligence and create psychological safety as critical elements of collaboration design. Our facilitators from Mural will build on a legacy of human-centered design, methods and facilitation expertise to move teams from ideas to action, enabling collaboration around the following themes:


  • How are we going to solve problems together?
  • How will we connect as human beings?


The workshop will showcase how collaborative intelligence has already been applied in various projects. During Mural’s recent rebrand, we worked with the world-class design agency, COLLINS. Core to the work was the tight collaboration between the Mural design team and the agency, requiring COLLINS to craft their process into a more transparent and inclusive flow. For example, Collins took to digital canvases to invite participation in written as well as visual feedback from the Mural team. This not only enhanced their considerable talents, but also flowed seamlessly into Mural’s collaborative company culture. The process made it easier to synthesize feedback, enabling both teams to meet in the middle and create something brilliant.

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