The Importance of Setting a Collaborative Tone in the Workplace

Years ago, we moved to Kingston, Ontario from Ottawa. I was on the job hunt, and Kingston, being one-tenth the size of Ottawa, did not yield a lot of opportunities for me in the field of organizational development. As a result, I had to expand my job search in some rather creative directions, and one of them was writing.

I was introduced to Vera Asanin, the publisher of Your Workplace magazine. YW has always been a voice for the progressive workplace, discussing issues such as leadership, team building, HR practices, organizational structure, physical environment and many other elements that go into creating a great workplace. Vera, as the publisher, delights in pushing the boundaries of tradition, both in her magazine and her approach to it. One illustrative example: when I first met Vera, I was on a maternity leave with a young baby, and it was hard for me to arrange child care in this new town so that I could go to job interviews. Vera, however, steadfastly declared “You will recognize me because I will send you a picture of what I look like. I will recognize you because you will be the one with the baby.”

I have now been writing for YW magazine for over 10 years. I started out by publishing a series of articles on a model of personal change, and since then I have published umpteen articles on a wide variety of topics, including many book reviews. I am ever grateful to the YW team for their openness and flexibility when I approach them with new ideas. They have been extremely supportive.

Here is my most recent article for YW on how to set a collaborative tone in your workplace. I’d love to know what you think. Feel free to leave me a comment on my blog or on my Facebook page, and feel free to write to Your Workplace to share your thoughts there too – they would love to hear from you!

Thank you YW for being a collaborative partner!

You can view my writing here: Your Workplace 

Lisa Sansom

Lisa Sansom has her MBA from the Rotman School of Management, and over two decades of experience in teaching and training. Her years of work in the organizational development field have included projects on change management, employee engagement, leadership development, team coaching and employer of choice strategies.

Reader Interactions


  1. Judy Krings says

    I enjoyed this article as well as the magazine article. My “self-regulation” strength was set at red alert then calmed as I read your/her solution to an altered work space. I could feel my teeth clenched for a moment. Someone in my office did this while I was away. They moved one of my staff (And I owned the building and the clinical psychology practice!) while I was away. Whoa, horses! We three talked and worked it out. Reason and good will prevailed…and a good deal more open communication after that incident. One door closing offered an even better door of conflict resolution. Well done, Lisa, and kudos to your boss for enabling you to take your baby. A fun story.

  2. Lisa says

    Thank you Judy! And thank you for sharing your story! I also don’t like people messing with my stuff – I returned to my desk once to find a different office chair and no scissors! I didn’t manage my self-regulation well there, I admit. Still a lot of learning to do!

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