Working With Rivals
Keeping Your Integrity While Protecting Your Territory
Have you ever wondered how the colorful characters of television's famous A-Team managed to stay talking to one another long enough to catch the bad guys? Or how Star Trek's™ Captain Kirk and his crew were able to "boldly go" without falling out before they got there?
These two popular shows revolved around teams of strong personalities, who were able to work together to achieve great things, despite their differences. The same can be said of working with a rival. Although undoubtedly difficult at times – they are the competition, after all – working effectively with people who challenge us can be a great learning opportunity.
You might find yourself facing a rival at any point in your career. Maybe you manage a long-serving team member who, frustrated that there are no opportunities for promotion, has begun to "eye-up" your job. Or you might have been asked to collaborate on a project with other managers, some of whom are plainly ambitious and out to claim all the credit. Perhaps you've been working hard for a promotion, but one of your colleagues keeps taking over your workload in the hope that he or she will get it instead.
This article will explore the tools that you need to work successfully with your rivals.
How Can Working With a Rival Help You?
Business leaders often deliberately form teams that have "sharp edges" – whether it's a team of executives vying for the same role, or a group of co-workers who have differing opinions. Despite the potential for friction, working in a team of rivals can engage people in healthy debate, help to generate new ideas, and improve teamwork skills.