Your Network Is Your Team — Here’s How To Play With And Not Against Them

Lucid Leadership by Rowan B Colver

Nurturing Networks For Growth

It doesn’t matter if you work in a group or on your own, it’s bound to be part of your projects to involve others. There will be those who want to involve you, you probably get messages and see advertisements all the time. People who are on a mission to bring their work to the front of the queue will be on the lookout for help. This is true for me and it’s true for you. This doesn’t have to be a competition, in fact, if we work together, we can achieve a lot more than if we spend time stamping down other people’s bonfires. The world is full of people who are all looking to get forward with their ideas and projects. If we can position ourselves in a way that allows these people to see us as a means to their own ends then their interest in you will be positive. We of course must be strong and not let people take advantage. This requires an understanding and competency in assertiveness. We need to be smart and put ourselves in the equation because the chances are other people are not thinking about it. They’re too focussed on what they want and how they will get it. It’s nothing personal. Here’s how to get the most out of those around you while giving them the best of yourself.

Share Expertise

It might sound easy but it’s not. We like to get on with things and do things by our internal books and let others do the same. However, if we can become extroverted with our wisdom and encourage others to do the same, a higher resolution of information can be built. This deeper and richer picture of wisdom provided by two or more people with unique learning and experiences will be a well-spring of power for all who contribute. You’ll find that even people with identical qualifications will have remembered and prioritised different things. In realistic environments, we have not studied the same things and a combination of subjective and objective information results in a holistic understanding of a unique vector described by each contributor.

Stay On Target

So you’re all flying to the moon and each of you has your own rocket. The moon is the target and your rockets are the means to get there. The means is where the work is and the destination is your objective. By sharing knowledge on rockets and complimenting each other’s design, the end result will be compatible and focused journeys. What we don’t want to do is get so absorbed in helping their rocket get to the moon that ours fails to launch. We don’t want to get so involved in the mechanics of our rocket that our head is under the bonnet when we fly past our destination and into oblivion. The journey is important and we will put a lot of energy into it, we will work as hard as we can to make sure our device helps us reach our target. Whatever this is, the target is still the focal point. We need to have a binary vision to keep both work and results in view.

Be A Nice Person

Managers have a bad reputation for being grumpy and bad-tempered. Strong leaders can have a mean streak that is applied to themselves as much as the world around them. It’s how they stay where they are. We have to keep our superiority and ambition in check. You might be in charge, you may be achieving great things, and you might be handling vast quantities of stress without as much of a thank you. You still have to be a nice person. Others have to feel safe around you. This empowers them to be free from nervous bindings. Unless we’re adrenaline junkies, stress and anxiety are negative experiences. It prevents us from doing what we want. It sometimes goes as far as to stop us from wanting it anyway. So we have to empower others by reducing stress, working to prevent anxiety, and being genuinely, consistently, nice people.

Build On Shared Ideals

Even political enemies can agree on 90% of things. Both sides will agree that stealing, murder, tax avoidance, abuse, and many other things are crimes. It’s important to always remember that we agree on most things. When we meet people on their journey with their projects and businesses, we have to accept they will have differences. It’s easier to do this by acknowledging the shared ideals. It’s not about money like life is not about oxygen. We need it and mustn’t let ourselves or others go without it, however, we do things for other reasons. We don’t live to breathe, we don’t work to get money. This is our time, our one life, our given allocation in the great theatre of life. We want to do things for a reason that resonates with a deeper part of us. It is this value of work that truly matters, and if we can tap into a joint picture of these shared ideals and values, even competing businesses can work together to serve the world.

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Rowan Blair Colver

Rowan Blair Colver

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Music writer and humanities educator from Sheffield in England. Democracy of philosophy, comments are welcome. ko-fi.com/rowanblaircolver