• Paul M. Wood

2. Demands vs Discussions are core challenges in collaborations

In the last blog we spoke about achieving and maintaining a healthy balance when collaborating. One big blazing signal of an imbalance is when one collaborator stands firm and unyielding in a competing creation moment. It’s that critical point where the tone shifts as what had been a discussion turns to a demand.

Collaboration is not a service providing based on adherence to one person’s rule. It is not about following sole requirements, nor is it an act of demanding subservience to another’s inflexibility.

A very quick way to shut down an otherwise open and fulfilling collaboration is when one party begins to merely acquiesce to the other when that person begins to make demands/requirements that are no longer actual discussion points.

A warning sign is when one partner in the process makes a statement “I don’t see it like that”. That statement is not an opening for discussion, it is a demand placed to now find out what the other does see it with the tone that once that one vision is known, that it must be adhered to.

No discussion.

No agreement.

Sometimes that’s the result of sheer exhaustion if a project doesn’t appear to be taking action toward the goal, and the act of making demands appears the only way to move forward. But that decision can effectively shift the balance away from collaboration toward “just doing what you’re told” laying down of a law that must be followed.

This leads us to next topic of the stages in a collaboration to make the process and the result most successful. We will build a model that hopefully can be applied to enhance and enable good collaborations.

First part of the model is the set agreements from the start then check them all along the way. And that’s the next blog on collaboration!

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