We can help you build a collaboration with other businesses.

Here are five reasons why business collaboration is important for the growth of your business:

Self-awareness. Nothing crystalizes what you bring to the table more than when you’re forced to articulate your competencies Collaborating challenges you to articulate and distill what you are great at, and what you do poorly. That honesty about your strengths and weaknesses can force you to ask for help when necessary and be brazen about how you can help others.

Scale. The old adage, “two heads are better than one” has been around for over four centuries for a reason. More effective problem solving happens when you combine resources in talent, experience, finances and infrastructure. Sharing and leveraging those resources means that your reach to new markets increases and re-energizes the connection you have with established customers. Ecosystems rule, and as in nature, our social organizations thrive where there are diverse and complimentary systems that enhance the lives other firms. Understand that your firm is part of a greater whole, and that there is power in that.

Creative Abrasion. This term was coined by Jerry Hirsch when he was an executive designer at Nissan. “Abrasion” is a process of wearing down through friction. We typically associate friction with something negative, but friction in its purest form, is energy. So why not convert that energy that comes from working with people who are different from you, into something positive? Leverage the differences and work to identify what can be complementary about them. Which leads us to this next point…

Take the long view. Sometimes things don’t work out well when you collaborate with others, no matter how hard you try, how patient you are, and how well you listen. But does that necessarily mean you never attempt again to work with that organization? Take the long view about perceived failures, as Dave Gloss from the creative agency ‘Here’s My Chance’ reminded the group: while an initial project may not do well, the partnership may still be salvageable.

Learn, learn, and learn some more! Collaborating propels your firm to become a learning organization, a popular phrase right now that refers to organizations which have cultures of ongoing learning, and structures that support that learning through safety nets for failure, and opportunities for growth in all aspects of employees’ lives. Each time your firm collaborates with others you optimize the capacity of your associates to extend beyond their comfort zone, grow, and in turn, stretch the boundaries of the organization.

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