The above image is a screenshot from a mesmerizing GIF simulating the outcome of two planets colliding. The result is more spectacular than what existed prior to impact. At the moment of impact, the forces are overwhelming but tracking the calibration of all the pieces over time is fascinating. Rare is the opportunity to ponder the benefits of putting ourselves on a collision course with another uniquely positioned entity.
Partnership is rarely a strategy that receives big headlines. We are often defined by our individual role and if we do not succeed we hope somebody might rescue us. Independence is such a highly valued characteristic that it often outweighs the consideration of joining forces. We continuously challenge the African proverb, ‘If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.’ Why not go fast and alone is a modern day response.
In education we frequently force collaboration. Refrains such as, pair-up with a partner, read with a buddy, assemble in presentation groups, grades will be given for teamwork, are common in schools. Adulthood tilts on an axis of employing our individual abilities. We may adore that Harry Potter and his friends overcome unfathomable odds to move from one heroic quest to another, but we are encouraged to return to the mountain man model of centuries prior. We explore the wilderness alone for long periods before reassembling at periodic rendezvous to share tales.
Consider working the concept of partnerships into the next generative conversation. Who would be on our dream team? What are the possible transformative outcomes of a shared journey? What is the authentic help wanted sign that would make us respond immediately? What stories would a partnership make possible? Who might join our tribe if we were doing the work that matters? What value could we deliver that eludes us now?