We all go through a different path in life. Our personalities, education, upbringings and experiences make us who we are and influence the way we perceive reality. The path we take gives each of us a unique perspective on life and how we choose to approach certain situations. When it comes to team building and what makes teamwork function smoothly, it is important to understand that we all have something unique to offer. We all have different ways of accomplishing a project or generating new ideas and understanding someone else’s approach can be difficult if we’re not open-minded. Here are a few ways to broaden your way of thinking and to open yourself up to other perspectives.
Don’t get stuck in your own way of thinking
Sometimes it’s hard to understand the perspective of others because we are caught up in our own prior knowledge. Don’t be afraid to challenge your way of thinking and be open to new ideas. If you don’t allow yourself to be open to new approaches, you’re robbing yourself of an opportunity to expand your knowledge. We all create our own perspective or have them inadvertently instilled in us from our experiences and upbringings, but we can learn so much more if we simply widen our vision and understand the perspectives of others. When we share our stories, our experiences and our mistakes, we become stronger people and stronger leaders.
We all go through life at different paces. Is it fair to assume that everyone should know what you know already? The answer is no. It’s important to understand different backgrounds and how everyone travels a different path in life. Our environment, education and decisions shape who we are and who we become. Let’s say as an example there is a co-worker who has asked you for help with using a computer program. You have been using this program for years and understand it very well already. They however have never used the program. This is where being empathetic is important. How would you want to be trained on this program as someone who doesn’t understand it at all? Although you know how to navigate it quickly, put yourself in the co-worker’s position and work through it slowly together.
Know the people you’re working with
We all have different strengths and weaknesses. We are not all born superheroes, and even Superman has his kryptonite. What is so beneficial about working with a team is that each of us have something different to bring to the table. When we share our ideas and experiences, it allows us to find the most efficient way to approach a task and the best way to complete a project. Analyze and get to know the people you’re working with to develop a better understanding of who they are and their perspective. The more perspectives you have, the better, so be open to new ideas.
Understanding each person on your team, being empathetic and seeing other points of view are great qualities to have as a team leader. Sharing your unique perspective and allowing others to feel free to share their perspectives openly is beneficial because it allows you to generate new ideas and build more efficient ways to approach a project. Everyone has something to offer with their unique perspective. When you allow yourself to see other perspectives, you are opening the door to new knowledge.
“There are things known and things unknown and in between are the doors.” – Jim Morrison