Do you practice Collaborative Intelligence?

The rat race has come to an end. Employees will no longer compete for rank and riches with their peers. No, in the future, we will all collaborate to share our ideas, develop them in collaborative teams, and bring them to reality for the common good. That’s not going to happen, I’m afraid.

But what will happen, in fact, the shift has already begun, is that society and the economy will find a happy medium between rivals fighting for market position and rivals sharing ideas. And, if you want to prosper in this economy, you’ll need to develop your collaborative intelligence or your capacity to interact with others and generate ideas, as proposed by authors Dawna Markova and Angie McArthur of the book, Collaborative Intelligence: Thinking with People Who Think Differently.

Have you ever been stuck in a mind-numbing meeting when time seems to be moving at a snail’s pace? Here’s one explanation for this typical occurrence: most people have limited understanding of how to collaborate effectively with others. That’s because, rather than being prepared for collaboration, we’ve been taught to value things and wield power over people in a market-share economy. In this world, success is defined by the assets accumulated, such as money, vehicles, and homes.

But it’s also a world in which we’re taught to be right and to focus on our individual capacity, self-sufficiency, and independence; a world in which a leader is someone who’s at ease stating “I’m right and you’re wrong,” while dealing with diversity through eradication and control. Wealth is built more on ideas and relationships than on transactions in a mind-share economy, according to the authors. For example, if two people have an idea and discuss it, they will both come up with new ones. As a result, the more information we provide, the more others will be aware of it.

Because of this, one of our most valuable skills is the ability to generate, develop, and execute ideas with others. So, rather of trying to outdo your colleague, pay attention to what they have to say and try to learn from them. However, this does not negate the importance of a market-share mindset. It simply entails balancing it with a mind-share approach, allowing us to compete and collaborate while working toward a common objective. LinkedIn, for example, competes with headhunters but also collaborates with them. As a result, the site has a better understanding of what headhunters require and can better assist them in using the site to hire LinkedIn members, which is a direct benefit to the company.

To be like LinkedIn, you’ll need collaborative intelligence, or the capacity to reach out to others, listen to what they have to say, and be open to new ideas. Because you will only be able to achieve together if you do so.

It would be a piece of cake to define the word attention, right? Consider this: this common term can be broken down into three different versions. That’s because attention not only determines what and who you notice, but it also controls the flow of information within you and between you and others. Not only that, but depending on your objectives, you can aim, follow, or shift it.

The first sort of attention is focused attention, which is defined as focusing solely on one thing while disregarding everything else. It helps you achieve goals by making your thinking more certain and directed. However, attention can also involve sifting, or changing between internal and exterior stimuli. This type of focus is useful for organizing and digesting information, allowing you to see the broad picture clearly.

The back-and-forth of weighing different possibilities is a classic example of sorting attention. When you’re in a situation like this, your brain takes in all the relevant information and says, “On the one hand… but on the other hand…” The third stage of attention is open, which means your focus is dispersed, allowing you to access memories, images, and ideas while also generating new ideas and insights. When you’re contemplating how to address an old problem, for example.

So there are three unique types of attention, and you change between them throughout the day according to your personal rhythm. Unfortunately, society values concentrated attention far too highly. Consider how many times you’ve heard that having more focus will help you be more productive. The problem is that all three types of attention are necessary, and preferring or ignoring any of them might have serious implications.

According to brain-wave tests conducted on schoolchildren, there is no single way to present information that will hold all children’s attention. That’s because some people want to be visually stimulated, while others prefer to be listened to and conversed with. Not only that, but combining the three types of attention with the three perceptual channels results in six distinct mental patterns, each with its own set of advantages and disadvantages. Visually oriented people, for example, may easily see details in their heads and can easily take in complicated visual information. They may, however, be prone to daydreaming and imagining new possibilities.

So, how does this affect you? Knowing which thought pattern you employ is critical for guiding your thinking and ensuring that you complete the task at hand without becoming stuck. Jesse may, for example, strengthen his sorting attention by talking with a buddy and going for a stroll, or by taking a time to gaze out the window to put his brain into neutral before making a major decision.

Have you ever had a coworker whose words you couldn’t understand? It’s possible that the source of this problem is just a difference in thought habits. As a result, it’s critical to recognize your own mental patterns as well as the tools you’ll need to communicate effectively.

If you find yourself wanting to walk around to focus and notice your attention shifting when people speak, having a whiteboard nearby to scribble down notes after a chat may be useful. Alternatively, you might find that having little moments of silence during meetings helps you think things through on your own.

It’s critical to change your approach based on your understanding of your discussion partner’s mental pattern once you’ve established techniques to help yourself grasp and communicate. To do so, begin by asking people which types of communication they find most helpful, and then strive to incorporate these into your sessions.

Then, after the meeting, you can inquire about how each conversational aspect performed. However, it’s equally crucial to be conscious of how your actions influence others and to have a plan in place to change your strategy if necessary. It’s possible that one guy speaks excessively because talking helps him concentrate. If you ask folks like this to move around, you may discover that the kinesthetic input shifts their focused attention to a sorted or open one, making them more receptive and open to feedback.

If this technique works well for your group, you might want to start each day with a 15-minute stroll during which you can discuss your day’s agenda. Do others ever inquire as to how you became so skilled at what you do? “I don’t know, I just do it,” most individuals can’t think of another response. However, there may be a simple answer, and it has everything to do with your natural ability to think in ways that increase your mental energy.

In actuality, there are 35 separate abilities, and each person possesses about five of them, which combine to generate their own unique type of intellect. Some people have an innate ability to create closeness, making it simple for them to form close bonds with others. Others love sorting diverse variables and are skilled at putting things in order. This appeals to people who enjoy diving headfirst into perplexing circumstances and organizing them. Taking charge is a third talent that identifies people who inspire others to take action. They might be managers, and they’re not afraid to confront people when necessary.

As a result, everyone possesses unique cognitive abilities, but our deficit-oriented culture obscures these abilities. That’s because we’re more concerned with repairing our flaws than with utilizing our strengths. As a result, our abilities are sometimes obscured by other, less desirable characteristics.

A logical individual may need to consider each notion before embracing it. Others, on the other hand, may see this inclination as overthinking, which stifles new ideas. As a result, it’s critical to communicate your abilities. Because doing so allows people to see your point of view and allows you to put your skills to good use. When it appears that your skill could be useful, simply inform everyone of your plans. This may be as simple as prefacing a series of questions with a statement about your perspective, such as “I tend to think quite logically, so I only need to ask a few clarifying questions…”

But make sure you put your skills to good use and don’t let them go to waste. Because studies show that the more employees who can answer “yes” to the question “can you utilise your abilities at work?” the more successful a firm is.

Check out my related post: How do bees, deep learning and an iPhone go together?

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