Interdependence advocated for innovation

Diego Rodriguez of metacool understands why it is often better to play with a team than play with yourself:

If you’re going to get innovative stuff done in the world, odds are you’re going to do it with other people.    If you haven’t looked out the window lately, we’re living in an ever more connected and interdependent world.  If there ever was a time for lone inventors to thrive, this is not it:  smart, action-oriented, high-EQ, multidisciplinary, interdependent teams are uniquely positioned to take on the broad, systemic challenges so in need of innovative thinking today.

So if you’re going to do remarkable stuff, you’ve got to learn to grok the gestalt of teams.

Never cared much for the word “grok”, but the usage and alliteration fit here.  The “T-shaped people” point is an especially valuable one.

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5 responses to “Interdependence advocated for innovation

  1. It depends. I have been the technical writer on engineering and software development teams. I also write features on my own. It could be argued that I am on the publisher’s team (or the reader’s) but, really, I just work alone on this and sell it where I can.

    Personal development might include learning to work better in a team environment via training sessions and focus groups. Personal development might also include learning to fly an airplane — at least it did for me and I value that much more than emoting with my teams.

    People are different. Different people are different in different ways.

    Would it make sense, for instance, to take to China, Japan and India the message that you can achieve more by thinking and working alone, unfettered by the prejudices and limitations of the people around you, thus gaining the American advantage of individualism?

    • Doesn’t sound like a binary call to me. Your features probably don’t see the light of day without some cooperation from others, but they could be of higher quality than what you do in teams. Only you would know that. I would think developing team aptitude would benefit anyone, especially those whose individual efforts need to find an audience.

  2. i don’t see an email for you, so i’ll leave a comment here. i’m finding your blog useful to keep browsing. many thanks.

    on the theme of interdependence and related matters, i’ve just posted a (too?) long analysis that reflects my own interests at:

    http://twotheories.blogspot.com/2009/06/timn-and-emergence-of-collaborative.html

    at the end is a nod to one of your posts about the limits of collaboration.

    onward.

  3. Belated thanks to you, David. I’ve been under a log. I very much like what you’re writing and hope you’ll keep it up.

  4. many thanks, including for comment left at my blog. much appreciated. onward.

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