The title of this post might sound like heresy in a world where the word “collaboration” can be found in almost every corporate mantra.
In fact, collaboration is one of the core values of the organization I work for. Hear me out on this. I’m not saying collaboration is a bad thing. Collaboration is a great thing.
If you will humor me for a second, I think there is an important lesson to be learned here.
When a problem or challenge comes our way, our initial reaction is to call a meeting or gather some people and brainstorm to find a solution. This happens all day everyday in organizations all over the world.
The problem is that I’ve seen many collaborative efforts turn potential opportunities for breakthrough ideas into a muddled mess of mediocrity. (How’s that for some alliteration?) I think we use collaboration as a lazy crutch.
The point I’m trying to make is that often times thinking alone is more productive than thinking together. Not always, but often.
Most problems can be solved by thinking in solitude for an extended period of time.
Have you ever tried this?
Have you ever locked yourself in a room for hours with no distractions to just think? I hadn’t until this year.
Solitude is an extremely powerful tool.
Amazing clarity and creativity comes from intentional concentration.
Try it sometime.
(Photo by H. Michael Karshis)