Radical Collaboration
eBook - ePub

Radical Collaboration

Five Essential Skills to Overcome Defensiveness and Build Successful Relationships

James W. Tamm,Ronald J. Luyet

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  1. 352 pagine
  2. English
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eBook - ePub

Radical Collaboration

Five Essential Skills to Overcome Defensiveness and Build Successful Relationships

James W. Tamm,Ronald J. Luyet

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The second edition of the essential guide, updated with new research and observations to help twenty-first century organizations create models for effective collaboration.

Collaborative skills have never been more important to a company's success and these skills are essential for every worker today. Radical Collaboration is a how-to-manual for creating trusting, cooperative environments, and transforming groups into motivated and empowered teams. James W. Tamm and Ronald J. Luyet provide tools that will help you increase your ability to work successfully with others, learn to be more aware of colleagues, and better problem-solve and negotiate.

Radical Collaboration is an eye-opener for leaders, managers, HR professionals, agents, trainers, and consultants who are seeking constructive ways of getting the results they want.

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Informazioni

Anno
2019
ISBN
9780062957801
Part 1
1st Essential Skill
Collaborative Intention
Chapter 1 is about your own attitude and the effect it can have on relationships. Do you live in a defensive, adversarial Red Zone, a more conflict-avoidant Pink Zone, or a more collaborative, nondefensive Green Zone? Chapter 2 explores whether you’re defensive by tracing the history of your own defensiveness. You create a personalized early-warning system to tip you off if you start to get defensive. Then you can create an action plan for overcoming your defensiveness. In Chapter 3, you’re given a tool for better understanding what’s really happening when your buttons get pushed and your emotions get triggered.
Chapter 1
Attitude and Intention
Staying in the Green Zone
Where do you spend most of your life, in the Red Zone, the Pink Zone, or the Green Zone? It’s a choice. Most people don’t recognize that this is a choice among three fundamental attitudes as they enter into relationships and conflicted situations with others. It’s a choice that will fundamentally affect everything else you do and how you approach collaboration. Early in relationships, your attitude will either support collaboration or undermine it. Your attitude will determine how you perceive the world, whether situations are safe or threatening, and influence how you respond to those situations. The terms Red Zone, Pink Zone, and Green Zone summarize three alternative mind-sets and intentions. We must first understand our attitudes and then, if necessary, change them.
Box 1-1
We invite you to reflect on this question:
Do you build your relationships
from the Red Zone, the Pink Zone, or the Green Zone?
The Green Zone reflects an authentic, nondefensive presence. In the Green Zone, people’s actions in a relationship are not driven by fearful motives, nor are they determined by an unconscious competitive or evading spirit. Individuals in the Green Zone seek connection from a centered place according to deeply held values and character, rather than tactical or strategic thinking. Their outer self and their inner self are congruent, meaning their conscious actions are in harmony with any unconscious motivations. When conflict arises, they seek to understand and to grow, for they desire mutual gains rather than victory or hiding from confrontation. They seek to get their interests met rather than simply trying to defeat or avoid the other side. From the Green Zone, people do not perceive potential conflict as threatening, for they have tools and coping methods that allow them to deal with difficult situations in a less reactive way. Green Zone attitudes foster collaborative actions and are more receptive to overtures for collaboration from others. Green Zone attitudes also give people additional skills for responding effectively to those who don’t want to be collaborative or don’t know how to be collaborative. Individuals in the Green Zone are more effective when called upon to deal with others in the Red Zone and the Pink Zone.
In his book Good to Great,1 Jim Collins writes that his research team evaluated more than fourteen hundred companies to identify those that had progressed from good companies to sustained greatness and to determine the factors necessary for the transformation. Collins deliberately avoided the hypothesis that a company’s greatness is a reflection of the CEO. The results of the study, however, proved otherwise. The leaders of each “great” organization have two things in common. First, they’re fiercely ambitious for the long-term success of the company. Second, their personalities fit the Green Zone mold—namely, each CEO exhibits a compelling modesty and humility. They aren’t boastful or egocentric. They demonstrate understanding rather than bravado, and they reveal a nondefensive authenticity.
Box 1-2
It’s not enough that we win; everyone else must lose.
Red Zone statement of Larry Ellison, CEO of Oracle, discussing his bid for PeopleSoft2
In contrast to the authentic confidence of the Green Zone, let’s first explore individuals in the Red Zone and how they exhibit defensiveness and fear. They often appear to be aggressive, so others usually fail to perceive that their attitudes and behavior are driven by underlying fears. Their motivation, however, is often to defeat the other side in order to defend themselves, to win regardless of the cost, and to make the other side feel wrong so that they can feel right.
These Red Zone protective mechanisms lack a generosity of spirit and heart. More often than not, they arise from fears that produce short-term thinking rather than long-term planning. Conflicts feel warlike rather than like problems to be resolved creatively. Forgiveness is foreign, and apologies are begrudging rather than heartfelt. Individuals in the Red Zone focus only on the best outcome for themselves with little or no regard for the interests of others. Positions are often stated in very strong terms, and the other side’s views may be only a secondary consideration, if a consideration at all. Individuals in the Red Zone continually argue the validity of their own position and the fallacies of the other side’s position, and they will often take disagreement more personally than warranted.
Box 1-3
A Person in the Green Zone
  • Takes responsibility for the circumstances of his or her life
  • Seeks to respond nondefensively
  • Is not easily threatened psychologically
  • Attempts to build mutual success
  • Seeks solutions rather than blame
  • Uses persuasion rather than force
  • Can be firm, but not rigid, about his or her interests
  • Thinks both short term and long term
  • Is interested in other points of view
  • Welcomes feedback
  • Sees conflict as a natural part of the human condition
  • Talks calmly and directly about difficult issues
  • Accepts responsibility for the consequences of his or her actions
  • Continuously seeks deeper levels of understanding
  • Communicates a caring attitude
  • Seeks excellence rather than victory
  • Listens well
Box 1-4
A Person in the Red Zone
  • Blames others for the circumstances of his or her life
  • Feels threatened and wronged
  • Responds defensively
  • Triggers defensiveness in others
  • Is rigid, reactive, and righteous
  • Uses shame, blame, and accusations
  • Is unaware of the climate of antagonism he or she creates
  • Has low awareness of blind spots
  • Doesn’t seek or value feedback
  • Sees others as the problem or enemy
  • Sees conflict as a battle and seeks to win at any cost
  • Doesn’t let go or forgive
  • Communicates high levels of disapproval and contempt
  • Focuses on short-term advantage and gain
  • Feels victimized by different points of view
  • Is black/white, right/wrong in thinking
  • Doesn’t listen effectively
Thirty years ago, when we first started looking at the impact the culture of an organization had on its collaborative effectiveness, we coined the terms Green Zone and Red Zone to summarize the two alternative mind-sets and intentions that we found to be prevalent at that time. For many years those seemed to be the predominant organizational cultures within our client base.
But over the past fifteen years organizations have been doing a much better job of dealing with hostile, abusive, Red Zone behavior. It’s no longer socially acceptable to be seen as a bully in the workplace. Employees started filing lawsuits against companies that encouraged abusive managers and supervisors. Employees wouldn’t put up with it, so turnover was higher in Red Zone companies. We saw this as a very good trend, just as we’re seeing a similar positive impact on organizational culture from the “Me Too” movement. However, these changes didn’t always result in more Green Zone behavior. They sometimes just drove the Red Zone behavior underground.
Box 1-5
Presidential Examples of Green Zone Attitudes
Thomas Jefferson
“Honesty is the first chapter of the book wisdom.”
Harry S. Truman
“It’s amazing what you can accomplish if you do not care who gets the credit.”
Dwight D. Eisenhower
“War is mankind’s most tragic and stupid folly; to seek or advise its deliberate provocation is a black crime against all men.”
Jimmy Carter
“We become not a melting pot but a beautiful mosaic. Different people, different beliefs, different yearnings, different hopes, different dreams.”
Ronald Reagan
“Rather than making them, of talking about putting up a fence, why don’t we work out some recognition of our mutual problems, make it possible for them to come here legally with a work permit, and then, while they’re working and earning here, they pay taxes here. . . .”
“Ratification of the Convention [Against Torture] by the United States will clearly express United States opposition to torture, an abhorrent practice unfortunately prevalent in the world today.”
George W. Bush
“The United...

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