The Microstress Effect
Build resilience against microstress, find purpose, and cultivate relationships that enable you to thrive both at work and in life.
Beyond Collaboration Overload
Collaborate smarter to reclaim 18-24% of your time, restore your well-being, and succeed in work and life.
How to be a team player — without burning out
Collaboration in the workplace is more important than ever — but it’s making us less productive in some ways. Here’s what Rob Cross has to say on what drives us to take on way too much — and how we can reclaim our time and our peace of mind.
Explore Core Ideas in Beyond Collaboration Overload
Click on the titles below to explore the headlines and watch a brief video
Network Strategies for Individuals, Teams and Organizations
Explore five powerful applications of network science that drive individual, team and organizational success.
Elevate Personal Performance and Well-being
Reduce collaborative overload and re-invest in connections with the greatest impact.
Accelerate Role Transitions
Replicate network practices of fast movers to speed productivity and success in new roles.
Execute Critical Work through Networks
Manage connectivity inside and outside groups for top performance.
Propel Organizational Agility and Alignment
Drive change and cultural transformation with targeted network interventions.
Promote Rapid Innovation
Tap into invisible employee networks to fuel creativity and speed time-to-market of new ideas.
What future-focused leaders say about Rob …
Rob is a true pioneer in taking organizational network analysis and in seeing its possibilities for leadership, innovation and talent management. His work on Collaborative Overload has been very helpful to us as we have sought to help leaders navigate the increasingly hyper-connected, always-on world of work. His commitment to us over the years as a thought partner and practitioner has been invaluable.
Rob and I have partnered over several years, first at Ford and now at DICKS Sporting Goods, focused primarily on Collaboration Overload and Wellbeing. He has a unique ability to bring rich, credible research to light in a digestible way… he humanizes the science, and uses his expertise to help us all lead, work, and live better together.
Rob Cross has distilled a significant body of scientific evidence and research on network analysis and made it practical and impactful for leaders at all levels. This impact is often within days, and it improves their own performance and well-being and allows the entire organization to operate with speed to drive (and scale) innovation through high-quality collaboration. I have seen this impact first-hand as we have partnered with Rob over the last 2 years.
Rob’s work has ushered in a whole new management science domain to help organizations better understand critical business issues and drive bottom-line impact through the lens of social capital evaluation. He has the rare ability of being able to conduct complex studies and then express his findings in a crisp, compelling and practical manner. His research has significantly influenced my personal views of how to position talent for optimal success.
Cigna’s emphasis on organizational and personal leadership networks has resulted in improved business operations, leadership pipeline development and talent effectiveness. These results have been amplified by the expertise and corporate acumen of Rob Cross, an essential element of our work in this space. Whether working with new Cigna leaders or executives working to establish ever-better business and workplace efficiencies, Rob has distinguished himself as a “must have” member of the conversation and team.
Rob’s twenty-plus years of academically rigorous research makes him the unmatched leader in understanding the personal and organizational strategies required to succeed in the emerging Connected Economy. Over my career, I have seen his presentation style and counter-intuitive insights mesmerize and energize the most executive C-suite teams.
The Network Insights Blog
It’s Not A Big Network that Matters
Contrary to popular belief, an effective network is not usually a big one. Success doesn’t come from having the most connections. Creating and engaging targeted relationships is the key to personal performance.
New Role? Learn What Top Performers Do
Most people know that building their network is important for success in a new role. But the advice they get about how to do it is probably wrong.
Manage the Network, Not Just the Team or Unit
Traditional team principles and common methods for collaboration are ineffective today when people are staffed across so many teams with increasingly short lifecycles. Managing networks inside and outside of teams is critical create effective agile groups…
Drive Organizational Change Through Network Influencers
Identifying and working through informal opinion leaders—before a restructuring, strategic reorientation or launching a significant change initiative—can improve uptake of a change and increase the odds of success.
Drive Organizational Change Through Network InfluencersRead More
Overloaded? Stop Blaming Your Boss
Always-on work cultures, encroaching technology, demanding bosses, difficult clients and inefficient coworkers do create collaborative overload. But there is another enemy: your own mindsets and habits.
6 Types of Collaborative Disfunction—and How Teams Can Do Better
Groups morph into predictable patterns of collaboration that undermine performance if collaboration is not purposefully managed. More successful teams avoid or correct 6 common network patterns that cause lackluster performance or failure.
6 Types of Collaborative Disfunction—and How Teams Can Do BetterRead More
Employ Organizational Network Analysis for Better Org Design
With organizational network analysis, leaders can analyze economic costs and benefits of collaboration and use these insights to redefine hierarchical structures and craft roles and processes to deliver agility and efficiency.
Employ Organizational Network Analysis for Better Org DesignRead More
Activate a Purpose-Built Network to Propel Innovation
Innovations of substance almost always occur through creative friction and re-combinations of existing ideas in networks. More successful organizations drive innovation through critical network roles and processes to generate ideas and get the best ones into…
Activate a Purpose-Built Network to Propel InnovationRead More
Finding the Path for Success in Any New Role
The right network leads to higher productivity and early wins, which help people build a solid reputation and position themselves for future success. But the path is different for different types of role transitions.
Want High Performance? Take Action on Trust, Purpose and Energy
Developing high-quality relationships is critical to team success in dynamic times. When employees experience trust, purpose and a sense of energy in their network, they are more likely to be high performers, give greater effort, report…
Want High Performance? Take Action on Trust, Purpose and EnergyRead More
Surprising Ways Organizational Network Analysis Enables Cultural Change
Most culture transformations begin top-down, but culture is experienced locally in networks. More successful culture-change efforts use organizational network analysis to drive diffusion of desired values and behaviors deep into an organization.
Surprising Ways Organizational Network Analysis Enables Cultural ChangeRead More
Spark Networks of Innovation with a Culture of Trust
For innovation to happen, people need to feel safe to speak up, ask questions, admit they don’t know and contribute ideas. More effective leaders create cultures of trust to promote the collaboration and risk-taking needed to…
Spark Networks of Innovation with a Culture of TrustRead More
3 Ways to Thrive at Work
Happier people tend to define how they want to live, then create networks that support their choices. They are proactive to clarify what they want to include in their lives and invest in those activities with…
Network Tips for Women in New Roles
Four critical networking practices distinguish high-performing women. Women can adapt their own networks to accelerate transitions into new roles and thrive their careers.
Shape the Ecosystem to Improve Team Performance
Team success doesn’t happen in a vacuum. Leaders who proactively shape the organizational ecosystem in 6 ways are likely to have an engaged team, a better work product and smoother implementation of ideas.
What is Organizational Network Analysis (ONA)?
Organizational network analysis (ONA) is a tool to measure and graph connections and patterns of collaboration between people within and across organizations. Leading companies use ONA to amplify people analytics and make data-driven decisions to enact…
How to be a Top Performer—And Have a Life
High performance and personal well-being don’t have to be at odds. By making a few small changes, you can gain back 18-24% of your collaborative time and then connect in ways that enable you to thrive…