Would You Rather Win with the Team or on Your Own?: Collaboration vs. Competition

In the African American community, it is so common to see so many people excel in different business ventures and entrepreneurial endeavors that they have branched out on and it makes me wonder to myself, is it possible that people can achieve satisfaction from collaborating with their peers, as opposed to being in competition with them?

What would have happened if two people would have come together to make that happen, instead of having so many different avenues of the same business running at the same time.  I believe it is because more people thrive off healthy competition with one another; as opposed to collaborating and sharing the spotlight with someone else.

People who are individually competing in something are naturally going to want to overshadow anyone else they are competing against, because they want to make sure they are seen as the number one person.  This reminds me of the “crabs in a bucket” mentality; where we constantly step over and manipulate each other, just to be the person at the top.

Humans live for the validation of others, believe it or not.  Even when you do not realize it; you live for some form of validation in your hard work and dedication to a task.  Even when you don’t expect it, a kind gesture, a thank you or some written recognition goes a long way when you have put in the time, dedication and effort t to get to a certain place with someone and you competed and won.

I also believe there is some level of competition within collaborating with others; however, when sharing a project with someone, it is just that.  It is a shared and joint effort, and therefore the work and end product is presented and shared amongst the group.  No one person is anticipated to be outshined by another person, because that is not hte purpose of a collaborative effort.  The point is to allow all parties to have an equal and conscious effort into completing the task.

So, again I say, we all have plenty of opinions on whether or not competition is good or bad for you; however, I like to think when using competition in a positive framework, it can be utilized in a morale-boosting way in a professional workplace and things of that nature.  I also like to think that collaborative efforts are just as creative and deserve just as much credit as welll.  In the end, it all depends on how or what your personal rewards-based system runs on: do you enjoy collaborating and sharing the positive efforts  with other peers, or  do you live with a competitive mindset on getting things achieved?