Sometimes idealism runs rampant. At least in my brain. My last post wrapped up with the comment: “we project managers need first to be collaborators through and through.” Just the phrasing makes me think that I was deeply engaged in idealistic self indulgence. Not a bad thing. But, all things need balance.
Dan Rockwell’s “Leadership Freak” comes through again with a relevant reinforcement; and this time a counterpoint to balance my rant. Today’s Leadership Freak post “When Collaboration Doesn’t Work” does a wonderful job helping us deal with the situation where we want to collaborate but it isn’t working. Collaboration, at least the ideal of collaboration, isn’t always the right answer to getting where we need to go.
Read Dan’s post and then think about what it’s saying about collaboration. I think it’s saying that collaboration, like leadership, is situational. There is always an opportunity for collaboration, it just presents itself in different ways and calls for different approaches and levels. Sometimes we collaborate fully when the parties share values, bring diverse perspectives and expertise, and are seeking a strategy for a long term solution. Sometimes we are at odds in many ways but still need to get something done. Here we may collaborate minimally, or hold at bay those who would use feigned collaboration as a weapon against progress.
I really like Dan’s post as it give us insight into how to temper an idealistic view of collaboration with the realities of the situation.
Thanks for reading.
Copyright Glenn Briskin and “The Other Side of Risk” 2012