Collaboration is working with each other to do a task and to achieve shared goals. It is a recursive process where two or more people or organisations work together to realize shared goals, (this is more than the intersection of common goals seen in co-operative ventures, but a deep, collective determination to reach an identical objective) — for example, an endeavour that is creative in nature —by sharing knowledge, learning and building consensus. In particular, teams that work collaboratively can obtain greater resources, recognition and reward when facing competition for finite resources. (Thanks Wikipedia!)
The challenge of collaboration is staying focused on the greater shared goal. Conflict over different approaches, different ideas, competitive pressures will surface. Dealing positively with conflict is the art of collaboration. Consider if you will a member of a team with a strong belief in their way of doing things. Their belief is so strong that any challenge to their way of doing things is usually a source of great tension within the team. This is not a helpful trait when it comes to collaboration. A useful matrix to consider when looking to build a collaborative team is how the members of your team view themselves and others.
If you have a high regard for yourself and a low level of regard for others, this will not be helpful in a collaborative relationship.
If you have low regard for yourself and a high level of regard for others, this will also not be very helpful in a collaborative relationship.
If ‘people’ including yourself are just not that important to you, this will not be very helpful in a collaborative relationship.
Collaborative relationships work best when an individual values themselves and others equally highly.
Seek First Ltd specialise in developing the behaviours and language that build self-awareness (your regard for you), behaviours and language that build an understanding of others (how you regard others), behaviours and language that develop your influencing skills and behaviours and language that lead to effective collaborative action.
Over the coming months this blog will go into more details about collaborative behaviour and language. Our first Collaborative Behaviour Practitioner programme will be taking place in London this Autumn. Contact is now for more information.