BookMachine | Collaboration Nation: On the art of thinking ‘bananas’

BookMachine_logoThis fortnight on Bookmachine, I went a bit bananas…

Collaboration is the rage at the moment, yet the misleadingly straightforward word can hide a minefield of possible pitfalls: how do you reach out to others to start collaborating? And once you’ve formed a partnership, how do you maintain your needs and vision whilst still allowing for those of others? Collaboration can be pretty scary if you haven’t tried it before and if you’ve had a bad experience, it can be even more intimidating.

So what’s the answer? According to workshop leader Jamie Catto, the key is to think bananas!

Unrealistic expectations

According to Catto, and numerous psychological studies, we have reached a state of business in recent years where we all expect ourselves to be perfect but, not only is this perfect ideal unattainable, it actually harms our ability to reach our full potential.

Moreover, by expecting perfection from ourselves and others, we drive ourselves into a state of fear and stress: what happens if someone finds out that we are not perfect? We are effectively pressure-cooking ourselves every time we step into the workplace, not to mention keeping the door firmly closed on our creativity, where our individual ‘fruitcakeiness’ is most likely to be found out.

This makes collaboration even at the smallest level very difficult because we are communicating between projected fronts beset by anxiety, rather than actual people. Forget multi-national deals, we have difficulty even figuring out who’s supposed to refill the photocopy paper! … [READ MORE]