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WORKING TOGETHER IS DIFFICULT - PROJECT MANAGEMENT CHAPTER 16

Collaboration possibilities, cooperation problems

Collaborating is fun, Sesamstraat pokes at us. We are forced to enjoy working together from our second year onwards. However, cooperating is not always fun. Collaboration is difficult, collaboration often goes wrong and collaboration does not always yield the desired result.

Still, it will have to be, in a project. After all, the essence of project-based work is precisely that organized collaboration between people with different backgrounds and different professions. If you could only handle it, you did not have to make a project out of it.

Cultural differences within the team

A different profession, a different style, a different approach. It is precisely because of these differences that you form the project team together. Sometimes it takes some getting used to. There is no reason why you should immerse yourself in each other's background during the introduction. For example, exchange some prejudices: IT staff are always too late, consultants can't be concrete, a bit manager is busy, busy, busy and unfortunately, unfortunately, there is nothing to do with it. Do you recognize those prejudices? Are there also positive aspects?

Helping conflicts

You sometimes hear people talking about "a good fight". Well, conflicts are part of working together. But in work situations you actually do not have time for it. You do not have to go on holiday together: working together is also a matter of giving and taking. Yet it is not wise to always avoid a conflict. Although the direct cause of a conflict is usually a trifle, the underlying problem is often important. Try to find out for yourself what you really are about. What are you bothering about right now? And why do you think that is so bad? The source of many conflicts is often something that is really important to you. If you have that, you can make something useful from an annoying conflict.

Creative conflicts

If you as a team are really motivated to make something of it together, you make sure that a conflict does not get out of hand . On the contrary: together you ensure that you have something left over from a conflict. In that sense, a conflict is primarily a learning situation. It helps you as a team a step further. This means that there must be someone in the team who does not want to be involved in conflict situations. The teamworker , to speak with Belbin . Without going directly into therapy with each other, you can ask questions about mutual annoyances. Do not be too stuffy about that. Make sure it is about the matter and not about the people.

Destructive conflicts

Sometimes it does not run in a team. Small annoyances can grow into high-pitched quarrels. The advantage of this is that you can't ignore it. If small annoyances like a kind of peat fire continue to flee underground, there is really a problem. Projects are the result. This is why you can probably say goodbye to one or two colleagues in such situations and seek replacement. Sometimes that is simply not an option. Then external guidance is useful, specially because the project leader is usually part of the conflict. And: a good project manager is not automatically a good mediator.


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