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There I said it. Creative culture, and probably office culture at large, shoehorns everyone into an unnatural amount of collaborative situations.
I don't mind working with people here or there on a few things and a lot of time its fun if you like the person, but there is this idea that if you can just get more of it and make everyone have to change their goddamn personality and world outlook just to get more of it, then you get more value.
A lot of the time if you give someone some fucking alone time to work through something, you get some kickass shit too. Just saying.
I feel that you must collab to have maximum output.
You can't work on a thing in a vac.
We need others to fill in the blanks with their expertise if you want to add true value to the marketplace (not just locally). But is that what you're speaking of? No? or...
can I get a Amen.
The bigger the team the easier it can turn into a mess.
"A Camel is a horse designed by committee"
I agree, cannon... plus studies have shown introverts to be less 'needy' than your over-socialized extroverts. Extroverts require attention while introverts tend to slow down and think more... far more useful to the fold (according to studies).
"Several studies exist to support our assumption that introverts are smarter. A study by “The Gifted Development Center” found that around 60% of gifted children are introverted (compared with 30-50% of the population) and that the same is true of 75% of highly gifted children...
Some of the world’s top inventors are introverts. Believed to be the most intelligent people in the world, they prefer to be alone to focus on their craft. Little to no social stimulation gets in the way of their thinking.
Bill Gates, Larry Page (founder of Google), Albert Einstein and Steve Wozniak (co-founder of Apple Computers) are all introverts."
Also... this Ted Talk from Susan Cain hit home to me:
Collaboration has got us where we are today. Everything we do that advances science and technology has taken years of collaboration. It's easy to say that Einstein, Jobs and Page were all introverts but it took the work of hundreds of other people throughout history to allow them to do what they did.
I'm not saying one single person can't do something truly magnificent, but to assume the collaboration of minds that came before all that was overrated seems silly to me. It's one of the fundamental necessities for the survival of our species if you ask me.
- Oh, you didn't ask me!Ianbolton
- great point, without collaboration we would still be struggling to make fire hahaMiguex
- we also wouldn't have warscannonball1978
- and we probably wouldn't exist because it takes a man and a woman to 'collaborate' to make more of usIanbolton
Collaborations normally end up as a total shitshow in my work - always when it comes to competitions - unlike regular projects, no-one takes overall control.
The gang is assembled, everyone has thoughts about every aspect of the project and pull examples from all corners of the internet. Meetings upon meetings upon meetings discussing how great their pictures of NY's HighLine is. For, like, 80% of the available time. Then the remaining 20% is spent thrashing out work that is:
A). Nothing like any of the amazing ideas, not even a smell.
B). Fucked together with basic materials because architects shit blood when it comes to costs instead of going bananas - it's a fucking comp - costs and materials can be compromised later.
C). Bland and neutered.
Then it comes to me and my No.2 to try and make their bowkin' Lady Gaga look like fucking True Blue-era Madonna.
Every single fucking time.
'Collaboration' is the most alarming code-word for 'No-one here is either competent or has the authority to make a final, clear decision.'
A lot of people are describing collaboration ending in mediocrity because no one can take charge or find a clear voice for a project.
I think that's more "compromise" than "collaboration" though. Collaboration signifies working towards a shared goal. Collaboration shouldn't necessarily forgo a leader necessarily, it should just avoid excess amounts of ego.
Eight years ago, I joined a team of 6 who worked together in the office and were free to collaborate when desired. Over time, as technology was embraced and hiring became less localized, teams became spread across the country and now there are only 2 of us in the office, and live collaboration is almost nonexistent.
As someone who has experienced both worlds and everything in-between, I can say with complete confidence that there is nothing as efficient and productive than the ability to print something out, walk it over to your creative neighbor, and talk through a solution. What just a couple of designers can accomplish in mere minutes, in-person, working together takes a week or more with calls and chats and PDFs to accomplish virtually.
Collaboration is still necessary.
Oh, and yes, FORCED collaboration is bullshit. Collaboration that happens organically, when required and when desired, is what makes creatives creative. The ability to go BACK to your bubble after collaboration, to make executive decisions, is also necessary.
There's a fine line between "design by committee", which rarely produces more than mediocrity and "collaboration".
I am just coming off a project that had a committee making the decisions. NO ONE would take responsibility for ANYTHING. So reviews, etc., all went over without a comment. Then at the end, when anonymous, they all start making comments, many contradicting each other. Total mess and waste of so much time.
Collaboration, on the other hand, should have a clear leader/decision maker and be done with like minds.
As a principal of one of the larger architecture firms (that's my background) once said "we always aim to hire people better than us".
That's what the best people/company's do - hire the best they can get. That way, "collaboration" is with people you respect, which is paramount. That's how it should be done.
Some of the best work I've done in my life was the result of collaborating with people whose skills supported my own.
Laterally, some of the other best work I've done in my life I've done on my own with regard to no one.
some of my best work was done collaborating. but, it was always only one person and mostly the same one. we are also great friends, so needless to say we collaborate daily on something for the last 12-13 years.
groups (more than 2-3 people) always turn out a mess from my experience.
- I did this. Then we went behind my back. Friendship pretty much ended after 20 years. Be careful if money is involved.formed
- exactly, no money is involved. we just work together and help out each other. that's why i think it works for such a long time.renderedred
So, all great points.
I wasn't arguing if it was necessary or not. I was complaining that it is overrated, and in some senses overused.
Collaboration is definitely not overrated.
Without collaboration, anything completed on any significant scale would simply not exist.
No buildings, cars, computers, infrastructure, space travel manufacturing, etc., anything really that requires at least two people to create would simply cease to be.
Society as we know it would not and could not exist.
Life as we know it is built on the fundamental existence of collaboration
Collaboration is fine...just not 4-6 hours of it every fucking day.
Go do work!
An office of 5 might be able to do what an office of 200 can do. For the most part, people won't notice what cost 1,000s more to accomplish.
It takes so much more time to deal with and organize all those people.
But it makes people's lives easier a lot of times if things are segmented.
Life is short though. Work with people you like, hire people to help to make your job easier, go to sleep at a reasonable time.