Cocreation Rules

Day 304 Week 44 Q4 Wednesday, November 1, 2023

As has been stated many places before, no one actually innovates by themselves. In the same way that no one wins an Olympic Medal by themselves without the support of parents, trainers, backers, and teams, no one innovates alone either.

It is great fun to create, invent and discover. It can also be great fun to do it with others who are also creative and flexible enough to co-create along with you. And your chances of success go up by a lot if you do.

You may be more comfortable initially as a solitary individual, but that is often fear and insecurity masquerading as a solo superiority complex. You are not a machine; you are a human, and humans are social animals. 

This does not mean you are expected to get along with everyone all of the time, but it does mean you do have to get along with someone some of the time, and statistically, you will live longer and be happier and, oh yeah – be more productive as well.

Do not feel what you are doing is so precious that you can not take the chance of others messing it up or messing you up. Groups simply have more impact than individuals. I know, having tried it both ways. I am sure that you, too, have experienced both being solo and with others. Now, if your IQ is thirty or forty points above simply being very intelligent, you might argue, but I sure would not want to be you, and I expect that you also do not want to be you.

If you declare yourself to have tried and cocreation never worked and are going solo forever, you are missing out. You may have tried with the wrong people, and you may not have been able at that time in your life to get along with people as well as you do now.

There is a straightforward reason that people partner or collaborate or cooperate, or whatever you want to call it. It works.

After fifty years of innovating, I now freely admit in retrospect that the things I did with others turned out better than the things I did alone. One of the significant life lessons I have learned as a creative outlier and involuntary innovator is relationships matter more than projects. That is, as long as you create reusable relationships, not just one-night stands.

Treat people the way you would like to be treated. See them. Acknowledge them. Listen to them respectfully. Ask yourself what is in it for them, not just what is in it for me. 

You might even discover that cocreation rules.