In this world, there are two types of people; those that use a smart phone cover and those that don’t. I’ve obviously never done a head count but I feel the majority belong to the ‘use a phone case’ camp. There’s a lot of logic in spending 20 bucks to protect $500. In many ways, it would be reckless not to invest in protecting your assets.
Well that is where I, self-proclaimed Vice President of the ‘we like our smart phones just the way they are, thank you very much’ society, see a point of difference. You see, a smart phone is not a phone at all. Let me be precise; it is only a phone to a very small degree. Largely, it is a totem-like object that is more a piece of assistive technology which works in a variety of ways. It says a lot about all of us. It indicates how we behave, what we believe in and much more. That shouldn’t surprise many of us. If anything, most would have the necessary self-awareness about why we choose many products, including our smart phones.
So, why the link between smart phone cases and collaboration?
Perhaps the simplest explanation is to start with this notion; the likelihood of smart phone damage by accidental fall to the ground is really quite low. Yes people drop things all the time, but place yourself in the middle of a busy pedestrian street and observe how many people are bending down to pick up their smart phone from the ground. By and large you would have to wait for a long time to see that. At the same time if you look around you will see that the majority of people have their phones encased in all kinds of protective gear. The simple point here is that humans overreact to hypothetical risk. And that is where the collaboration link comes in. Collaboration is really not going to deliver first rate dividends unless our attitude to risk is re-examined.
I’m not suggesting we ignore it; just saying that seeking to collaborate with risk averse partners may be nothing more than an academic exercise. By all means don’t rush into a collaboration with Mr Risky; but there is a fine line between foolishness and unreasonable fear. In other words, risk assessment and risk management plans should reflect on the fact that undertaking collaboration-based business means thinking about risk differently. If we look at the fact that collaboration delivers more competitive results for business, then it makes sense to examine our risk management strategy as a way of aiding, or supercharging, the collaboration.
Selecting people who are risk takers, but not reckless, may be a way of unleashing the full capacity of each employee.