Look at Yourself

It’s all too easy to point fingers when things aren’t going well. It’s always someone else’s fault, of course. The person you should really be pointing at is yourself.

Following on from my last post Precious Gifts, you’d very rarely get this behavior in a hospital. Why? Because everyone has each others backs, as a team, they need and respect each others presence, contribution and expertise. They’ve all earned it.

Q: Why does this healthy team behavior exist in hospitals, yet not in other work place environments?

A: They all know they’ve all worked really hard to deserve a place on the team.

Medical professionals spend many years in study and training. They’re screened every step of the way and only the toughest and most resilient are good enough to pass the training, make it through to a career and become the best in their field. In other work place environments the training isn’t as rigorous. And who’s doing the tough screening along the way? It just doesn’t exist the way it does in the medical world.

Which is why in other work place environments we often see a frenzy of finger pointing and cultures of blame when things don’t go smoothly. Who’s taking accountability for their own actions, and who has their teams back? It’s down to each individual, their professionalism and attitude, to contribute towards team success.

Look at yourself.

What are you doing to prove to your colleagues that you can be trusted and that you’ve earned your place on the team? Don’t focus on others, focus on yourself and what you’re doing for those around you.

The Value of Collaboration and Networks

Collaborative creativity is already proving to be a great success. The companies that remove the boundaries and adopt a more fluid creative mindset are the ones that are leading the future. Often competition is seen as the enemy, but this is old thinking. It’s different today and we have access to brilliant resources and ecosystems that have the potential to create and build new ideas.

The most powerful brands have collaborated to create products and services that matter and connect with people. Think Apple & Nike making technology and sportswear work together, and Stella McCartney bringing fashion to Adidas, Marc Newson bringing comfort and style to the interiors of Qantas airplanes. Brand collaborations are not new, but they’re a growing trend and the collaborations are getting bigger, and for good reason. The concept of a networked business has also been reported by McKinsey and research is showing that performances of such businesses are significantly improving. Fast Company wrote about The Money Network in April 2011.

FastCo Design: Info Graphic of the Day: The Money Network

Strategist Nick Keppel-Palmer has just written a piece for Fast Company on the principle of companies collaborating to create the future and believes “the most impactful brands have embraced collaboration as an operating principle”.

The same principle applies to design businesses. The concept of creative collaboration and networks can provide greater value to clients. Rather than taking a defensive competitive position, one of each to their own, the mindset needs to shift to one of creating the best value and working efficiently to deliver remarkable ideas that matter and connect with people.

No matter what business you’re in, will you be embracing the power of networks and collaborations to create greater value and remarkable ideas?