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In today’s work world, increased productivity and profit are positively correlated to the ability to collaborate with one’s co-workers.  Winnipeg Transit and its operators’ Amalgamated Transit Union demonstrated both as outlined in From Enraged to Engaged – Connecting Through Collaboration.  In this workplace example, the commitment to win-win problem solving by employer and union not only increased productivity and saved over $600K in one year (see Winnipeg Transit report) but also enabled the command and control culture to shift from entitlement and blame to innovation and coaching for success.  Priceless?

The graph below illustrates some of the more traditional problem-solving methods still in operation for many work places.  Of the five approaches identified, only collaboration (the Peace Model) offers all parties involved the opportunity to mutually gain from their joint interaction.  The remaining four approaches (competition, compromise, accommodation and avoidance) make up what I refer to as the War Model, and as in any war, participation results in winners and losers.

assertiveness vs cooperativeness graph illustrating competition, avoidance, accommodation, compromise and collaboration results

High or low levels along the two axes, cooperativeness and assertiveness, determine which approach is likely to predominate.  Collaboration requires a high level of  both assertiveness and cooperativeness.

The real shift in Winnipeg Transit amounted to believing that peace was possible.  How about you!  Do you believe peace is possible?  How do you practice collaboration in order to bring about peace in your world?

Author: Helen Maupin

Author: Helen Maupin

Helen is passionate about transforming fear into love — from her, for her, for all. She expresses her commitment to transformation through writing poetry, self-awareness and yoga books, co-designing organizations into adaptive enterprises and deepening her daily meditation and yoga practices.

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