The sweetest harmonies are made when all musicians can be heard, finds Kirsten Levermore
‘Isolation’ is not a successful business practice – just ask the gang at Nokia. In an ever-connected world with speedy innovation a necessity, those who can collaborate are at the top.
Grounded in psychoanalysis and scientific study, business collaboration expert Martin Echavarria’s Enabling Collaboration equips readers to establish and enhance successful collaboration by becoming ‘Partnership Coaches’.
In a particularly clever analogy,Enabling Collaboration envisions groups as orchestras, with individuals represented as different instruments, all coming together to make the group and their sound unique. In this way, individuals are accounted for, but are not nearly as important as the group in its entirety i.e. the French horn may be tooting too loudly in the back of the room, but how is this affecting the rest of the orchestra and its sound? Using the toolkit Operative Partnership Methodology, managers can account for quiet tin-whistles and loud French horns, developing a collaborative leadership strategy whereby the orchestra’s sound changes according to behaviour, approach and expertise. Thus, through the Operative Partnership Methodology, the group’s sound is shaped and developed until a symphony emerges – until collaboration is coherent. Progress is measured using psychological scales, and is placed against Echavarria’s carefully structured development timeline, ‘5-Territories of Alliance Development’, each ‘territory’ of which is carefully established for the reader in an edifying and easy way. When collaboration is in its deepest form, and the group can maintain coherence for a long time, the group is in the ‘final territory’ and is successful.
Highly detailed and steeped in science, Enabling Collaboration is packed full with clear suggestions, psychological observations and academic references making it both useful manual and fascinating guide to collaboration and group psychology.
Best read in focused bursts, brandishing highlighter as a conductor’s baton and with notepad to map your thoughts.