Pitfall #1: No Objective
Always begin with the end in mind. When you collaborate with somebody, make sure that you put an objective into your collaborative relationship.
A vague objective creates troublesome collaborative relationship.
Have your objectives as clear as possible, if you want to make money write down how much money want to make. You must write it down because then, you set the objective straight to the point. Both of you must clearly know the objective of this collaboration project. Have an objective sheet, if you must.
Sometimes, your objective can be as simple as learning something from your collaborator. Once you have learnt what you wanted to learn, assess whether to move on to another “project”., or expand the objective of the current collaboration.
Whichever the case, always communicate your intention of the collaboration with your collaborator to avoid miscommunication.
Pitfall #2: Not Being Open
All healthy relationships involve open communication. Have an open communication and easy to access channel with your collaborators.
Often, a relationship fails because of miscommunication, misunderstanding and misinterpretation from either one or both parties.
When we are not open with our feelings, nobody can guess what is going on. Therefore, make it a point to communicate– in terms of being honest with your feelings, what you want, your expectations and being realistic with what you can do. An open communication is discussed without any personal attack and not taking things personally.
There is no such thing as telling you the one-sided truth – meaning, only the truth which you wanted to hear. You learn more about yourself and your business when you accept truths which you don’t want to hear.
So, remember that in collaboration, the value of a relationship is very important.
Pitfall #3: No Flexibility
The strongest link in a relationship is the chain that is flexible when holding two people together.
There will be times when you will meet someone who came from a different planet. This person may be the total opposite of you. This person can either push your buttons to irritate you, or push your drive to accelerate you. You must learn how to work according to your strengths.
If this person has strengths to complement your weakness, that will be good. If this person is not the right fit, just learn to say “No” before any business collaboration begins. But first, you have got to learn how to assess who can work with you and who you don’t want to work with. The best way to access is to know your own self. Yes, knowing yourself is KEY in all relationships. You must know what turns you on and what turns you off. Who you can tolerate and whom you can’t.
Have the flexibility to accept that all human beings are not perfect – so that you take their nonsense less seriously. Have the flexibility to allow mistakes and miscommunication to happen – because the situation is never going to be ideal no matter what precaution you take; it is how you solve the problem after that that determines your leadership abilities. Yes, be someone who takes full responsibilities for the outcome of your collaboration project. There is no such thing as the other party is wrong-er than you in a collaboration-relationship. Just like any relationships (if we get it right), it is not a matter of who is smarter, who contributes most, who sacrifices most, etc. That is why there is an objective (because this is business, after all) and you are constantly working to achieve your target.
The Success Team
Energetic bunch of entrepreneurs who cannot sit still!
Contributor. Cynthia is a Public Speaking and Communication Trainer. She is also the founder of The Success Factory.