Friday, June 27, 2014

Bruce Springsteen Gets Collaboration How About You?

Bruce Springsteen inducted his long time sidemen and woman into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame a few weeks back and HBO showed the ceremony. I caught Bruce's introduction speech and thought it was just what I want to say to management everywhere.

Namely, you know what you know, but the people that work for you are what will make you look better and greater than anything you can dream up.

At the 13:00 minute mark, Bruce explains in simple English what collaboration is all about. Full text at Rolling Stone here.:
But in the end, we kept faith in each other. And one thing is for certain: As I said before in reference to Clarence Clemons — I told a story with the E Street Band that was, and is, bigger than I ever could have told on my own. And I believe that settles that question.
But that is the hallmark of a rock and roll band — the narrative you tell together is bigger than anyone could have told on your own. That’s the Rolling Stones; the Sex Pistols; that’s Bob Marley and the Wailers. That’s James Brown and His Famous Flames. That’s Neil Young and Crazy Horse.
So, I thank you my beautiful men and women of E Street. You made me dream and love bigger than I could have ever without you.
Lip service? Perhaps. But even Bruce had to admit his best money making albums were with the whole band, not his solo efforts.

Collaboration is not always about 1+1=3 but how 1+1 can equal 4, 5 or 10. Working together you can do so much more because you can fill in the voids of each person's limitations. My friends ask for my help, not because I am an expert, but because I can see the problems in different ways and potentially offer solutions.

At work we struggle to "keep people engaged", "gather feedback", keep others updated on what we are doing. Item by item it may not bring any benefit, not all Springsteen songs are great, but the ones everyone added to their own little bits, have served the test of time.

There is no reason your organization can not be as great as The E Street Band and if you need help making collaboration work for your teams,  I can help, just ask.

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