1. The CEO and Marketing
For most companies, the marketing strategy is the same as the overall growth strategy—yet marketing is often viewed as glorified sales support. To really ignite growth, the CEO should work directly with the marketing team to tackle the four P’s that help companies win more business: product, price, place, and promotion. Make sure that your CEO shares an adjoining conference room with your team’s marketing gurus so that’s easier.
2. R&D and Marketing
Many companies isolate themselves from the market to do months of research and development, only to discover that their “brilliant” product is a dud. That won’t happen if you maximize positive collisions between marketers—who have their finger on the pulse of what your customers want—and the R&D team. Don’t have enough room to seat them together? Make sure both groups share break rooms and restrooms, as they do at the 3M (MMM) Innovation Center.
3. Sales and Operations
These two departments are usually like oil and water—with sales constantly trying to sell what the company doesn’t make and operations pushing back. Companies like Amazon (AMZN) are great at delivering on big promises because they find ways to bring these teams together. Co-locate sales and operations, and they’ll be forced to work out their differences. You’ll be surprised by the ideas they come up with when they’re not locked in battle.
4. HR and IT
I call this kumbaya meets the pocket protectors. Both of these teams provide the supportive infrastructure that enables everyone else to thrive and make good decisions. Sadly, at most companies the information technology team rarely steps out of its dingy server closet into the lavish suite housing human resources. Seat these teams together, and you’ll find it’s easier for them to collaborate on training programs to develop talent and to disseminate data that all your employees need to do their jobs well.
5. Treasury and the Comptroller
To prevent the temptation to embezzle, many companies already have different employees counting the money coming in vs. what’s going out. But if your whole accounting team sits in the same room, you’re making collusion between them too easy. Seat your treasurer and comptroller on opposite ends of the building so they don’t get too cozy. When two employees collude, the median damage rises from $80,000 to $200,000, according to the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners. Ouch!
This story is from the February 2015 issue of Fortune.