Christian Gericke

Turning a Silo into a Bridge: Nurturing a Collaborative Culture

Co-Presenting with Rahel Anne Bailie.

There’s a lot of talk about the need to break down silos: corporate silos, functional silos, content silos. The term “silo mindset” has been around for a number of decades, but despite a variety of attempts to change how organisations work, the silo mindset hasn’t changed much. In the content world, the latest trend is to try to eliminate silos through the use of technology, a sort of strong-arm approach to silos-busting.

But what if the end game isn’t about eliminating silos? What if breaking down silos really about doing something positive instead: creating a collaborative culture? Is it realistic to expect silos to be removed from an organisation, or should we anticipate ventilating silos instead, and encouraging cross-silo collaboration?

This presentation discusses multiple ways to look at the thorny issues around collaboration, context, technologies, and culture in the quest to improve our systems and workplaces, and making it possible to fulfill our business goals.

In this session, attendees will learn:

  • The difference between busting silos and building bridges
  • The top theories and common points within the theories
  • The key aspects of silo-busting: coordination, cooperation, capability-development, and connection
  • How to create an workplace environment that balances collaboration, technology, and change management to improve business effectiveness


Christian Gericke is the CMO for SMASHDOCs and a volunteer for Translators without Borders – managing the challenge online and offline. Spent the last 25 years in various management positions in the document and information management industry for companies such as Acrolinx, HP, and Exstream Software. Father of 2 daughters.

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