By:  David Othus

“If you have an apple and I have an apple and we exchange these apples then you and I will still each have one apple. But if you have an idea and I have an idea and we exchange these ideas, then each of us will have two ideas.” ~ George Bernard Shaw

Competing with yourself can be a healthy way to develop.  Always striving to hone your skills and get better and better.  But, when it comes to competition with others, there is often an underlying sense of lack. The feeling that I have to be the best, I have to be better than everyone else because there is only so much to go around.  The truth is we live in an abundant universe. That feeling that there is not enough for all, well, it’s just not true.   When we choose instead to work in collaboration, we can each lean on our own strengths and allow others to do the same. We can let go of trying to do and be in everything and develop greater skill in what we are uniquely good at.

So, here are some top-notch reasons why collaboration beats competition any day…


Collaboration Nurtures Relationships

Competition can destroy relationships. Collaboration nurtures them.  A huge part of running a successful business or being part of a team is relationship and trust building. What better way to build a team of support and trust than by working together and allowing everyone to shine!


Spikes Creativity

Multiple brains, skills, and work styles are much better than one when it comes to creativity and innovation. Group brainstorming sessions, sans judgment and competition, can improve products and projects by leaps and bounds!  Many a great leader, inventor, and creator have attributed their success to collaborating with others.

“If I have seen further it is by standing on the shoulders of giants.” ~Isaac Newton


Personal Expansion

The seemingly ironic thing about collaborating is that is makes you better as an individual too. Like that George Bernard Shaw quote we started with, collaboration allows you to multiply ideas.  If you have the humbleness to learn, everyone can be your teacher. As you work in cooperation with those around you, you learn from their ideas, their successes, and yes their failures too.  Someone else may have the tips and advice to prevent you from years of struggle if you will only listen.

As Will Rogers said, “A man only learns in two ways, one by reading, and the other by association with smarter people.”

Aim not to be the smartest in the room, but to collaborate with those who have remarkable skills and ideas. You will only become better for it!  Collaboration is the heart and soul of innovation, networking, and expansion!


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