B044: How to Create Collaborations (as a Core Value)

By January 11, 2019 March 5th, 2019 The Simplifiers Podcast

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This month, we are taking the core values of The Simplifiers, breaking one down each week in our Friday bonus episodes. This is so you can understand what we believe in and why… and how you can incorporate the practice of core values in to your own work this year.

The next core value I want to shine a spotlight on is…

Collaboration

We can do great things together… alone serves no one.

Earlier this week, you learned that I was terribly shy as a child, which may totally be a surprise to most of you. Bottomline, it was a fear that I had to overcome, in order to truly thrive in life.

And through that lifelong process of finding my own voice, I discovered my creative strengths, and what I can offer the world through my work. What I’m good at and what makes my heart sing.

The very best part of the work I get to do is when I’m working in collaboration with other brilliant people. There is only so far you can take an idea, all on your own. You need other people to breathe fresh life into it. To add skills or connections that you lack. To build on it, enrich it, and help you soar to new heights.

Plus, it’s a heckuva lot more fun to do things with others than all by yourself.

Here are 3 simple tips to help you create new collaborations in the year ahead:

Discover

You likely already know what your super-powers are in your work… the things that you’re unequivocally known for and that people gladly pay you money to help them with.

But do you know the same about your inner circle?

Think about your top 10 favorite vendors, partners, service providers and colleagues in your industry. The people you’ve got on speed dial and know would have your back in a jiffy.

What are their super powers? What are their major goals this year? Create a list of people you’d love to collaborate with and start to reach out to them.

Discover what makes THEIR hearts sing and what they’re looking to accomplish in the year ahead.

Great minds think alike… what if you both are going after the same goals and didn’t know it?

What if you partnered on a project or bundled your services to a shared audience? Just imagine what your combined forces could create!

Ask

Which leads me to step 2… you’ve simply got to be bold enough to ASK.

Now you’ve found out what your potential partners want to create in the year ahead. It’s time to come up with a concept where you both collaborate, share audiences and achieve greatness together.

Put it down in a simple, 1-sheet proposal, illustrating the idea in images, bullet points and the potential opportunity you both could claim.

Ask if the timing is right for them and if they want to work with you. Most opportunities fly right on by because no one was courageous enough to ask.

Just imagine what a graphic designer, a web developer and a personal branding photographer could create together? Or a wedding planner, floral designer and rentals company could create as a special promotion?

The options are limitless.

Take flight

Once you’ve got a concept on paper and both parties agreed, it’s time to take flight.

But first, take the time to set out who is doing what, and put it down on paper, clearly and succinctly. This is no time for fuzzy lines.

  • Put a definitive start and end date to this project or campaign and set a budget.
  • Who is contributing, what towards the hard cost expenses?
  • What are the revenue projections (if any?)
  • What are the expectations?

This is not meant to take the wind from your sails, but rather to help both parties gain clarity on the roles you each are playing, what you want to accomplish and how you define success.

This is a critical step to taking flight and enjoying the journey along the way.

And just one final whisper, just from me to you, dear friend… come in closer.

I’m reminded of a poem by John Donne:

No man is an island,
Entire of itself,
Every man is a piece of the continent,
A part of the main.
If a clod be washed away by the sea,
Europe is the less.
As well as if a promontory were.
As well as if a manor of thy friend’s
Or of thine own were:
Any man’s death diminishes me,
Because I am involved in mankind,
And therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls;
It tolls for thee.

~ John Donne, poet

No man or woman is meant to live a solitary life. Neither are you. And while it might be scary to reach out to others or pitch a new idea for collaboration for fear of rejection, I encourage you to give it shot.

If they say NO, it’s not a ‘no’ to your character… it’s simply not the right timing or not a match for them. Move on and keep asking. Keep dreaming up new collaborations that can breathe new life in to your work.

And hey, a ‘no’ over here might result in a ‘heck yeah!’ over there!

The world needs your super powers. We need you to show up, shine bright and serve others. Alone serves no one… including yourself. We are better together because I can help you… and ultimately, you can help me, too.

Together, we are unstoppable.

You can do this, I believe in you.

It’s time to SIMPLIFY.


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As always friends, keep things simple.

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