Playing With Others - Do I Have To?
I, like many of us in the graphic design field, do the majority of my work on a freelance basis. That, for me, means that I work alone and independently of others. For someone who finds peace and solace in this environment, it can be very nice. What do I do, however, when I get into a project that involves other people? What happens when I am (gulp) forced to play with others?
When I was in the corporate world, oh so many years ago, it was a given that I would work with other people. In the '80s, the buzz in the business world was all about working in teams, remember that? Even though I may be dating myself, I recall reading and studying all about the "team" concept, and that it was the in thing to do. Well, these many years later, at least in my experience, that team concept has fallen away and I have gotten out of practice. I have gotten older (and hopefully wiser) and am pretty much set
in my ways.
I am now getting involved in a collaborative with other designers from many different disciplines. This is a good thing, as I can go after larger, and multiple, projects with this larger "team". Can I let go of my way of doing things and actually let things get handled by someone else who is not me? Can I put my ego (as much as I say I don't have one) aside and allow assistance and differing points of view to come into the mix?
I know that I want to, but I find myself getting caught in the
"my-way-or-no-way" thinking and it bugs me. In practicality, I see that other ideas and ways of thinking are, in kind, great to have and can take design projects to the next level. Lord knows, I need that. I just have to realize that there are suddenly others in my sandbox and I have to learn to share again. Wow, it's funny how the basics taught in kindergarten repeat themselves.
I am excited about the new "team" and really look forward to working in this fashion. I also know that it will be a struggle for me at times. I know and tell myself that I am not too old to learn and never too smart to be teachable. Heck, these other kids in my sandbox may even show me a thing or two. Maybe I will even find peace and solace in working with others.
Great. Now I'll have to work on my social skills...