5 Collaboration Tools I’m Thankful for

Leading up to the Thanksgiving holiday we’re going to weave threads of gratitude through the blog posts on Christian Web Trends as much as possible.

Collaboration is one of the key elements to innovation.  Great, new ideas rarely come from one isolated person.  Usually, great, new ideas are a mashup of ideas from two or more people, a collaboration.

Technology has made collaboration easier than ever before.  It’s now possible to collaborate with people we never could before in ways we never could before.

I’m particularly thankful for these four tools which have empowered collaboration for me.

1) Google Docs. At OurChurch.Com we are using Google Docs in place of  traditional word processor docs and spreadsheets more and more all the time.  We use it for metrics, staff priorities, strategic planning docs, meeting notes, policies and procedures, and more.  It enables multiple people to view and update documents without having to constantly email people the latest version.

2) Google Calendar. Make checking people’s schedules and scheduling meetings a piece of cake.  We always know who is available at what times.

3) Skype. We do our all our staff conference calls on Skype.  We can do video.  We can share our screens with each other.  It’s great!

4) WordPress. We use WordPress for Christian Web Trends.  Every post is an attempt to collaborate on a new idea.  We share our ideas in the posts and look for you to build on them, shape them, and tweak them, by adding your own thoughts in the comments.  And in case you didn’t notice, the number of authors contributing posts has been growing.  Last week 3 of our staff contributed posts (Karl, Richard, and I) plus Steve Fogg contributed a post all the way from Australia.

5) Twitter. I hear about other people’s ideas through Twitter more than any other source.  Through Twitter I’m constantly meeting and building relationships with new, innovative people.

Now it’s your turn to collaborate with me.  What collaboration tools are you thankful for?

Paul Steinbrueck is co-founder and CEO of OurChurch.Com, elder of CypressMeadows.org, husband, father of 3, blogger. You can follow him on Twitter at @PaulSteinbrueck and add him to your circles at Google+ as +Paul Steinbrueck.

6 Responses to “5 Collaboration Tools I’m Thankful for”

  1. I'm thankful for all the ones you've mentioned as well as some Chrome Extensions such as TweetMeme and one that tells you how many items in Google Reader, Email, Wave, or Voice you have without having those pages individually opened.

  2. thanks for sharing useful information about the Tools.

  3. Dropbox is one we've just started using in the office here. I like that it has the collaborative features of Google Docs, without requiring anyone to learn a new (even if only barely changed) interface.

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