2015 Collaboration Trends That Every Entrepreneur Needs to Know

2015 Collaboration Trends That Every Entrepreneur Needs to Know
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No entrepreneur is an island. None of us finds success without a little help from those around us. Effective collaboration is paramount for business success, whether starting your first business or your fifth.

A recent ebook featuring industry experts and analysts commissioned by my company, PGi, explored the 2015 trends in technology and collaboration that it believes will have the most impact on businesses around the world.

It’s vital that entrepreneurs stay on top of the changing landscapes of how teams, departments and businesses work together most effectively. Your time is invaluable, and wasting that time through ineffective communication or collaboration simply isn’t an option.

Here are three of the major trends my company identified and why you should care about them:

Related: Learn to Refine Crude 

1. Big data.

Big data is not exactly a new trend; every organization -- large or small -- has to prove the value of every initiative it undertakes. But as the technology to collect and analyze data has become more sophisticated and readily available, the deluge can drown you if you’re not careful. Or even worse, you can drown it out.

Anyone can collect data, but the difference makers moving forward will be those that can turn those mountains of data into action through sharing, analysis and application.

Every decision you make as an entrepreneur is infinitely more perilous than a larger organization that has the resources to easily make mistakes and course correct. By understanding how to intelligently apply the data you’re collecting, you can make those decisions more confidently.

Related: 4 Surprising Ways to Use Google+ for Business

2  Asynchronous vs. synchronous.

Generally, collaboration technologies fall into one of two categories: synchronous, or real-time solutions like web conferencing and conference calls, and asynchronous, or near-time solutions, such as email, online workspaces and project-management tools.

The seamless integration of both types of collaboration is more important than ever before for attracting and retaining top talent by facilitating different work styles and work flows. It also makes it easier to bridge international boundaries by not requiring everyone to be in the same place at the same time to get work done.

Empowering your people to work whenever, wherever and however they choose not only improves their productivity and loyalty, but it also breaks down all barriers between you and the talent you need.

You can literally expand your network across the globe without worrying about miscommunications or collaboration logistics. Thanks to asynchronous methods and by combining various collaboration methods, it’s easier to get a business up and running without the overhead of office space and equipment.

3. BYOD and mobile device management.

The notion of bringing your own device to work isn’t even a conversation for startups. It’s often the only option for getting a team up and running. But even for larger organizations, BYOD is increasingly the law of the land as savvier workers expect to bring their favorite devices and applications into the workplace.

But there are still security challenges, and systems like mobile device management are becoming more commonplace to combat the loss of data and sensitive company information.

Your data, your ideas, your plans, your strategies are the lifeblood of your new venture. Without the resources of a sprawling IT department, you and your teams will likely be relying on your own mobile devices. Understanding how to protect information moving in and out of your business can potentially prevent catastrophe. And software-as-a-service solutions combined with mobile applications make device management easier to deploy, maintain and afford.

Working together effectively and leveraging technology to make smarter decisions are invaluable strategies for entrepreneurs at any stage or experience level. Staying in the know and on top of changing trends will prepare you, your team and your business for success.

Related: The Threat Lurking in Bringing Your Own Device to Work