4 Reasons Cooperative Leadership Will Always Work

Jul 4, 2021 3 min read
4 Reasons Cooperative Leadership Will Always Work

We don’t achieve successful business change by overcoming others, but by encouraging cooperation. Learn how cooperation succeeds and competition fails.

A little while ago, I started a discussion about sustaining change. This soon turned into an exchange relating to leadership style, and specifically the pitfalls of competitive leadership.

On the one hand, some say a competitive leadership style and the winning culture is important. And on the other, that “winning” is a destructive force in business… especially when leading change.

I say we need cooperative leadership.

But what does this mean? And, why is it important when leading change?

Change should be driven by intrinsic motivators, those things that tug at people’s sense of equity and feelings of service or accomplishment. – John Shultz

Stick with me and I will explain. I’ll also show you that change should be driven by those things that tug at people’s sense of equity and feelings of service or accomplishment.

What’s more, you’ll see that competition and cooperation can work when used together to achieve the right outcome… for the right reason.

Winning Is Potentially Destructive

When we think of competition, it’s usually a win-loose situation. Competition implies that someone else fails… this isn’t good for relationships. And, relationships are crucial when leading change.

What’s more, winning seeks compliance. It relies on the manager to persuade, cajole or demand people into accepting a vision for change. And, sooner or later, this approach fails.

In most situations, we need cooperation: where people work together for mutual benefit to achieve a shared business objective.

We don’t achieve success by overcoming others, but by encouraging cooperation.

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