Two Heads May Not Be Better Than One

20 Apr

Collaboration Can Be A Double-Edged SwordProfessional collaboration – whether in a joint venture, a team project or a business partnership – is something of a double-edged sword. On the one hand, the devotion of several different minds to one project can result in unforeseen levels of energy, creativity and productivity. But, like anything else in the business world, there are drawbacks.

As members of a collaborative are likely to spend a considerable amount of time together, it’s natural for differences of opinion and alternative work habits to result. Conflict is unpleasant, but it shouldn’t be avoided. If nobody addresses their concerns then nothing will be accomplished. Knowing how to weigh trade-offs between options means knowing how to argue productively, says the Harvard Business Review.

It’s also important to realize that, especially at the startup stage, roles are going to be unclear. But this doesn’t have to be a bad thing, as it alludes to the fluidity of responsibility. Members should be prepared for their role to change with each phase of work.

Finally, members of a team should be ready to accept ambiguity. HBR points out that there is no point to collaborating on a challenge if you already know how to solve it.

How do work collaboratively and remain productive?

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