Throughout history, humans have always competed to survive. Today’s world is not an exception as the crave for competition is glaring in almost all human endeavors.
The competition to be outstanding and get the most lucrative job in the family, the passion to be seen and known as the most competent employee, and the zest to win others’ admiration all point to the push humans have to be the best.
Somehow, though, competing to be better than others, at all costs, is not really a noble cause to pursue. It is unarguable that businesses and individuals can do better through collaboration than endlessly competing.
At a point in time, I wanted to manage an NGO that makes impact by building Africans for Africa. I had little experience on how to go about it.
What did I do?
I made up my mind to preserve my vision in the cooler, went out, put my nose to the grindstone and volunteered my service to helping some other non-profits, so that they could stand tall in the industry and in the business of impacting lives.
As I was collaborating to build those non-profit organizations, I was indirectly improving my knowledge, skills, and ability in the industry.
Today, I am running a non-profit organization. I’m also able to collaborate and compete favourably with other organizations, making enviable impact in Africa. This is the result of collaboration.
According to Webster, Collaboration means “to work jointly with others or together especially in an intellectual endeavor.”
Collaboration makes room for a win-win situation, gives opportunity for flexibility in the workplace, helps individuals and teams create synergy, and makes people empathize with others as real humans.
Amy Poehler said something interesting about collaboration: “As you navigate through the rest of your life, be open to collaboration. Other people and other people’s ideas are often better than your own. Find a group of people who challenge and inspire you, spend a lot of time with them, and it will change your life.”
In collaboration, you may not get the lucrative job or be awarded as the most competent staff. But the excitement of collaboration comes from the fact that you were able to get a satisfying job and others are benefiting from it too.
In a nutshell, don’t be excited that you’re better than others. That can lead to complacency and unnecessary satisfaction. Be happier that you’re always achieving your goals even as others are hitting their targets too through your shared effort. That’s a nobler goal to pursue.