Working on a Dream




Tuesday, December 21, 2010

The Power of Two

Throughout your life you will have opportunities to build hundreds of partnerships.  Some are brief and some will last you a lifetime.  Have you ever thought about why some people click and some people clash?  Is it personality?  Is it shared values?  I bet it is a combination of a lot of things but recently I was reading a book by Rodd Wagner & Gale Muller titled,"The Power of 2."

In this book, they argue that in order for a successful collaboration to happen between people, there needs to be 8 vital ingredients.

After much research and time, here are the top eight:

1. Complimentary Strengths:  You have been gifted by God with a set of unique talents that only you posses.  With this in mind, it is imperative that you pair up with people who have been gifted in area's other than your strengths.  Think about it, if you have a team of five people who are all outgoing and really like to perform, then most likely the details of your efforts will get lost in translation.  So to be successful, think about surrounding yourself with others who are strong where you are weak and vica verca.  Remember, individuals are not well-rounded, but pairs can be!

2.  A Common Mission:  Finding a shared goal will be something that helps keep everyone in line over the long haul.  Even if things get off track, you can always call people back and get them to re-align themselves to the overarching mission of what originally brought you all together.  Keep this mission in front of everyone, talk about it, tell stories about will be the one consistent aspect that will help your group stay focused.

3.  Fairness:  "He gets paid more than I do and we do the same job!"  "Why does she get to leave early and I don't!"  Fairness at work and in life is huge.  If people perceive that things are not fair or if they are not being treated fairly, watch out.  Be sure to keep things at par with your people or they will distance themselves from you and "check-out" of work early (and that means at 9 A.M.). 

4. Trust:  Let's face it, if the boss is always looking over your shoulder and micromanaging you, then you probably will feel like you are not trusted to do you job.  [Of course, this is assuming that  you are performing your job at a high level.] If you are working with someone and not trusted, then get out.  I would rather find someone new to work with or work solo rather than be in a situation like this.

5.  Acceptance:  He is a jeans and blazer guy and you are an Armani dude.  She is a fashion guru and you are a Target dweller.  Listen carefully...Get over whatever little non-issues you have and focus on your task.  In the long run, these issues only tear you apart and really mean nothing.  Try to look for the best in the people you work with and then celebrate every one's diversity! I guarantee that if you take this approach people will love you for it and if this is the case, you will have a great workplace!

6.  Forgiveness:  Really simple one here.  If you work with people then you will by default be working with imperfection.  The reason is everyone of us is flawed.  Yes even you.  So take it easy on others and they will take it easy on you.

7.  Communicating:  This is crucial.  I cannot tell you how many times I have gotten myself into trouble by just assuming that others can read my mind.  Here is a good rule of thumb:  Remember that people cannot crawl into your head and know what you are thinking.  So try to bring your people into the discussion, decision, or whatever, this will ensure that everyone is on the same page and no one is out of the loop.

8.  Unselfishness:  Some people call this "mutuality" others call it "synergy."  To best illustrate this idea is to think back to when you were at the local fair.  Remember how 1 horse could pull a certain number of pounds and then when another horse joined that 1st horse, together they could pull like 5x the amount of the 1 horse.  The bottom line is that if you are going to accomplish anything totally awesome in this world, then you will not be accomplishing it alone.  Get together with others and watch what teamwork can do!

"As Iron sharpens Iron, so shall one man sharpen another."  Proverbs 27:17

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