On collaborating with others

I dislike and avoid group-think.

I retain my independence when collaborating with those outside of my business, avoiding slavery to group-think.

I retain my independence when collaborating with those outside of my business, avoiding slavery to group-think.

I commit myself to looking after Hilly Fields and Cymbeline Meadows in Colchester.  There are many other nature areas in Colchester, but I ignore those as I give my full attention to two adjacent areas where I have impact.  It is hardly note worthy looking after two nature areas nobody outside of Colchester has heard of, not as awesome as saving the Amazon Rain Forest, rhinos or cute pandas.  The bulk of my activity is picking up litter, occasionally removing graffiti and little actions to enhance the lives of animals in those areas.  My reputation is of someone who religiously each day cleans out the litter from two nature parks.  My joy is I make an impact, I can pick up litter when I like at 5am in the morning or 9pm at night, and I am winning the littering battle.

I have met by chance other residents who also pick up litter in Hilly Fields, also council officers and Councillors, resulting in a dynamic that could result in a network of people working together.  I hate being part of collaborative groups with their bee-hive mind, run by self-appointed tyrants whose relative truth everyone must follow. I am happy as part of a network of people where I retain my independence to contribute when I can and in my way to meet a challenge such as picking up litter.

Last year I contributed significant resources into a group business project looking after a wood in Colchester, I pulled out of the project when both sides disagreed over the mission statement and the project undermined my business.

I and my business only contribute to the projects of others as independent uncommitted parties where there is a benefit for benefit trade, where the outcome advances a business aim and where the result is prosperity along the lines of health, happiness and abundance for everyone involved.

Every group that has promoted my community of Colchester fails due to self-interested empire builders, and I refuse to involve myself with them.  I proposed a community website where all interested stakeholders can network in any manner or project they like, where no one individual or group controls the agenda.  The challenge in Colchester is lack of networking and group-dictatorship.

In my business I am boss and I run the show, but in any project outside of my business I avoid being trapped and enslaved in group-think.  I receive many offers to collaborate with others and I decline most of them.

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10 responses to “On collaborating with others

  1. good for you – I spent a couple years as a volunteer policing a park and picking up litter.
    It is a humble thing, but worth it. Sometimes though, the group think is correct.

  2. Ooh this sounds familiar. When I became aware of the litter problem in my local valley I did most of the litter picking then started a Friends group with the help of the council. However the council took alot of the credit for giving their assistance with the group. I’m now committed to running quarterly events in the park. However to be honest I’m not very good at being a people person or team player and would be much more comfortable doing the jobs alone and / or with a friend who has given me alot of help over the past couple of years. I also try to focus on what is close to home, preferably within walking distance rather than getting involved in national campaigns and signing hundreds of petitions.

    • I totally identify with your views, Lorna. I would be unhappy if a council or Councillor takes credit for what I freely do. I would be reluctant in being enslaved to a rigid structure which a group would predictably become.

  3. I think you have clearly described one of the keystone problems of our age. Imho, outside of things like military operations, hierarchy does not work. It stifles creativity anf motivation causing burnout for the “leaders” and apathy or frustration for everyone else.
    I think that using tools like nvc or something similar to build more horizontalist systems when people work together would free people to make more progress on any project.
    It is my understanding that pre-colonization peoples usually used such systems.
    Even in warfare no one was a warchief due to power over others-only thru the ability to bring out the best in others and come up with effective strategies. Basically a chief was leader among equals. People followed a person because they chose to. Most often the leaders were the best listeners not the bossiest or most controllling.
    No one does their best work by being bossed, controlled etc.
    I am sure in your business you find and encourage your employees natural talents and abilities so that they bring the most value to the business.
    If people could learn to listen to one another deeply they could solve any problem, but for many the ego and its fears get in the way and prevent that.

    • Hi Ohnwentsya, I share with you the view horizontalist systems are the way forward. I have in the past been part of or founded groups in sport or politics based on the old way of organising, learning first-hand the short comings of such organised structures. I am happy to be part of horizontalist systems, for instance those emerging from the creative sector of my community in Colchester.

  4. Kudos to you and your dedication to the local park. The Nature Spirits, I’m sure, are grateful. 🙂

    • Thanks 🙂 These places were considered sacred by both Celt and Roman. The Druids buried a cauldron in Hilly Fields. Next to Hilly Fields are at least three temples dedicated by the Romans, now under the grounds of a school and college.

  5. That’s good advice about staying clear of ‘group think’! Well done, and even more well done for what you are doing.

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