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5 Keys to Successful Collaborations Cheat Sheet (DRAFT) by [deleted]

How collaborations become higly successful

This is a draft cheat sheet. It is a work in progress and is not finished yet.

Introd­uction Highly Successful Collab­ora­tions

We often hear talk, in lofty terms, about working together to achieve a common goal in ways that conjour images of a Koombaya singing Utopian organi­zation where produc­tivity effort­lessly expands. If we’re honest we would have to admit that when this happens it is an aberra­tion, but it does happen on rare occasions.

Breaking through the barriers of competing interests, beliefs, perspe­ctives and motiva­tions is a challenge that is not easily achieved. So this got me thinking about this idealized and desired form of collab­oration that results in stunning results, which may be best called “Colla­ber­rat­ion”; because in my experience it is rare ("an abbera­tio­n") and simply not the norm.

So if it is collab­err­ation we want, with all of the messiness that comes with it, here are 5 key consid­era­tions that can contribute to enabling the kind of creative and productive enviro­nment where it can take place. These ideas are interd­epe­ndent, and self-r­ein­forcing of each other.
Credit: Kevin https:­//t­heg­rea­tde­cid­e.w­ord­pre­
Absstr­acted from "­Col­lab­ora­tion, or Collab­err­ati­on?­" posting

Vision & Purpose

There has to be a compelling and inspiring purpose to get people to reach beyond the limits of self, a purpose that stems from a vision that aligns their self interests and individual contri­butions to mutual benefit and achiev­ement of the group's objective.
Compelling Purpose

Transp­arency & Tolerance

There MUST be a desire and Tolerance for Transp­arency in collab­ora­tion, no matter how difficult and uncomf­ort­able. Transp­arency enables members to respec­tfully dissent, express and resolve differ­ences in opinion and build alignment (i.e., agreeing to disagree and move forward in a unified direction) This allows investment in the purpose, to achieve commitment and allow members to operate above board.
Building Alignment


Creative Conflict

There can be no argument amongst our collab­orators and directors. Conflict is inevit­able, and necessary. We should assume we will be challenged by the ideas and perspe­ctives of others whatever the position we or they hold in the group.
Disagr­eement and Contra­diction are a source for Creative solutions. Compelling Purpose and the Tolerance for Transp­arency can help sustain the group through the conflict.
Finding Creative Solutions

Incentives & Alignment

If our collab­orators are given the incentive to stand out from the group, they will likely undermine the cohesi­veness that creates the composite effect of their work. Individual incentives can not be allowed undermine the group purpose, and need to be crafted in a way that aligns rewards and/or recogn­ition with unique individual contri­butions that are clearly enablers to the group’s goals (i.e., those kinds of contri­butions the group would agree “we couldn’t have done it without them”). Transp­arency and purpose increase, and conflict decreases, the better this is done.
Enabling the Collab­eration Effort

Execution & Results

If our collab­orators believe in the vision, are given the incentive to advance the group objective in a way that is enabling of productive conflict and promotes transp­arency, they can create a stunning "­col­lab­err­ati­ve" results.

The end goal is to “work together” to produce something extrao­rdi­nary; an outcome or product. The execution and coordi­nation necessary to achieve that desired result are a byproduct of the points above, whether deliberate or circum­sta­ntial. The execution would be difficult as a goal, in and of itself.
Achieving the Desired Goal/R­esults