We've all heard the phrase “two heads are better than one”, and nothing could be more accurate in terms of business. Yet time and again, opportunities and avenues for growth and possible connections are lost forever due to inefficient communication.
What is the cause of this barrier to communication? Working in silos.
Working in silos is a term used to describe a situation when a partnership and/or team shares the same objective but cannot collectively solve the problem due to the poor sharing of information.
When this happens, teams resort back to an independent style of working and the genius that can be found within the distribution of knowledge disappears.
However, luckily for you, all is not lost.
You can quickly fix this problem by effectively implementing a concept commonly referred to as collective intelligence.
Within this post, we will outline what collective intelligence is and the incredible benefits it can have on your business, but most importantly, we will provide a clear framework for how you can actively use CI to improve your team's efficiency.
According to Harvard Business Review, collective intelligence refers to the “ability of a group to self-organize and to demonstrate a global behavior that represents a greater cognitive ability than that of any individuals who comprise the group.”
Although it sounds complex, the concept couldn't be more straightforward. It simply means that businesses that optimize the opinions and data shared within partnerships and teams are more likely to generate a better outcome than those working alone.
The thought of transparently sharing data can be scary, but in reality, the benefits far outweigh the risks.
When used to its full potential, CI dramatically increases creativity, engagement and general performance.
For partnership managers and sales teams that usually results in better growth and better retention. And once collective intelligence is adopted you can start to see some crazy benefits like:
All of which make growth and retention targets that seemed like Everest feel more like a molehill.
Although the benefits of collective intelligence are obvious - why it is so powerful can be a lot harder to explain.
The best explanation we’ve found of why it’s so outstanding doesn’t come from business or partnerships, it comes from the United Nations Development Program.
According to their 2022 publication “Collective Intelligence for Sustainable Development 13 Stories from the UNDP Accelerator Labs”, the mass sharing of data changes the likelihood of finding a solution from possible to likely probable. Due to the simple fact that an answer is far more likely to be found among larger data pools.
Regardless of your goal, the main takeaway from this publication is that an organization's most valuable tool is its ecosystem ( potential relationships) and that to operate to its full potential, businesses must utilize their partnerships and act as a collective rather than as an individual entity.
Within the business the simplest and easiest way to use collective intelligence is through Account Mapping to identify your opportunities for collaborative growth (creating an environment where information is shared amongst partners for organizational prosperity).
Now that you know a little more about the concept, it's time to learn how you can gain access to the juicy benefits of Collective Intelligence with our step-by-step guide.
So, let's get into it.
There used to be a time when the first step of account mapping involved opening up a spreadsheet.
But not anymore!
To start the process you simply need to connect your CRM to Reveal and get your partners to connect theirs (or get them to share a CSV with their CRM data).
Then let it work its magic.
Once the CRM is connected and contacts are shared the algorithm will get to work to assess the suitability of a partner based on:
What it eventually spits out is a list of potential partners and contacts that you can look to work with. Or in other words, people you can add to your ecosystem and make your organization collectively more intelligent.
This is where the fun begins.
You’ve got a list of contacts and potential partners to choose from and stats to get a gauge on their value and how much synergy they have with your product.
Now you have to start building your pipeline by assessing and choosing which partners will have the most impact on your business.
You can look at this through the lens of revenue and growth, as well as skills, knowledge and credibility to build the perfect pipeline.
Once the pipeline is nailed down, it’s about getting the details you need to build that relationship.
That means understanding everything from:
- Their business and product
- Their current network
- How you can help each other to grow as an organization
- To who is best to talk to about partnering
The beauty of account mapping is that you’ve got all of this (or at least the best people to get this information from) right within the platform.
So for example, if you need a bit more detail on their product and what they do - you can look at a partner you share and get that off of them as well as a potential intro.
Once you’ve got all the information you need it’s time to reach out to them.
Except it’s a lot easier than if you were doing it cold.
Now you’ve got someone to introduce you. To vouch for you. To be an advocate.
So really, all you need to do is to start building those relationships and closing deals.
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