No one in a professional capacity can achieve success in isolation nor have every right answer, approach or solution. Good decisions require consideration of all relevant information and a rational, objective understanding of issues from all perspectives.

Many counterproductive factors contribute to the avoidance of collaboration including: the importance of always be perceived as “right”, the belief that confrontation is risky, the resolve to impose a personal and singular approach, the determination to “win”, the desire to be self-reliant.

Collaboration involves eliminating fears inherent in the organizational environment by recognizing perceptions merely represent a personal slice of reality and not objective fact. By acknowledging personal views are just one of many legitimate opinions, colleagues will be encouraged and willing to offer their input.

There is an established and successful process to creating a collaborative environment. In addition to isolating personal observations, management must create a dialogue with team and staff, share relevant information and test it for validity, disagree openly and honestly and use consensus to make decisions.