Wednesday, 11 December 2019

Secrets of successful collaboration: 40. use others' words

Become familiar with the words your collaborators use to describe and express things. What words do they use to describe their key concepts and areas of expertise? What words do they use to describe the key concepts and areas of expertise they share with you?

Try out their words; when talking with your collaborators, use their words.

(Use others' words to increase your understanding of others and encourage empathy.)


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Tuesday, 10 December 2019

Secrets of collaborative success: 39. introduce freshness

Introduce new people and ideas into your existing collaborative relationships to freshen perspectives and stimulate new approaches.

Change the environment within which you and others interact (e.g., rotate meetings between collaborators' offices, or meet and work where the beneficiaries of your collaboration's activities live) to not only gain fresh perspectives and approaches but also, quite literally, experience the positions of others. 

Work with people to construct small experiments and "try-outs" that test and explore new concepts, ideas and approaches. 

(Introduce freshness to increase collaborative flexibility, increase inclusiveness, encourage curiosity, and challenge current perspectives and ways of doing things.)

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Monday, 9 December 2019

Secrets of successful collaboration: 38. paint a rich picture

As well as sharing your knowledge, ideas and suggestions, share why, where, when, how and with whom you discovered and developed them.
 
Share the story of your knowledge, ideas and suggestions. Enrich your story with contextually specific and personal details.
 
(Paint a rich picture of your story to help people get to know you personally as well as professionally and show that you acknowledge and value the contributions of others.)

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Sunday, 8 December 2019

Secrets of successful collaboration: 37. be consistently open for business

Work at being open to people.

Make sure people know they can approach you. Do not allow the demands of time and the habits of routine to narrow the avenues through which people can approach you.

Place "open for business" signs on the shop windows at the periphery of your collaboration's activities and welcome and usher in anyone who shows an interest, including the most casual of window shoppers.

Keep your internal mental camera rolling so you can notice and then catch up with people and ideas you could not immediately acknowledge and explore.

Keep your internal mental camera rolling so you can notice and then make the most of opportunities arising from encounters with "friendly strangers": hardly known but friendly people with whom you have effective but rare interactions.

(Be consistently open for business to increase inclusiveness, encourage conversation and face-to-face interactions, and show you have time and respect for people.)

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Friday, 6 December 2019

Secrets of successful collaboration: 36. pass important things to others physically face-to-face in the same space

When passing important things to others, meet physically and pass the things face-to-face in the same space. 

Knowledge, skills, feedback, praise, resources, authority, responsibility, accountability, leadership, ownership, insights, opinions: whatever they are, if they are important, pass them to others personally.

(Pass important things to others physically face-to-face in the same space to emphasise the value you place on both the individual and the thing you are passing to him/her, highlight the value you place on personal interaction, and create a tangible connection with another person that encourages mutual trust and respect.)

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Wednesday, 4 December 2019

Secrets of successful collaboration: 35. reboot your language and then create a shared language

At the beginning of your relationship with collaborators, use everyday "day-to-day" language whilst communicating with them: reboot to the default language you all have in common.

Then create a shared language for ideas and concepts, etc., you have in common with your collaborators but for which you use different words: create a common language for things you have in common.

(Reboot your language to encourage conversation and increase mutual understanding. Create a shared language to not only encourage conversation and increase mutual understanding but also increase feelings of mutual connection and begin the process of creating a shared history of collaboration.)

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Tuesday, 3 December 2019

Secrets of successful collaboration: 34. make time for playing and having fun

Invest time in playing with your own and others' ideas: make different assumptions about them; throw them into different, unexpected or unbelievable scenarios; use them in different and unexpected ways; link and combine them in different and unexpected ways; add to them; strip them down to their essentials.

When a "piece of play" proves particularly enjoyable, stay with and explore it for a while.  

(Make time for playing and having fun so you encourage curiosity and challenge current assumptions and ways of thinking, encourage informality, and increase collaborative flexibility and resilience.)

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