Wednesday, 18 August 2010

Understanding and building relationships with peers

This is about why it's important to openly discuss the relationships with your peers

Our start-up is just three guys. I've worked with Roger for seven years in a previous start-up, and I've been friends with Mike for over ten years.  No matter how long you've worked with people or known them, when you move to being equal partners in a new business, the relationship is going to change, and how you manage that change is going to be a major factor in your success.

Mike and I had an exchange last week to discuss the marketing site.  I had my opinion and he had his.  They weren't the same, but it wasn't an argument.  It reached a kind of stalemate, with me saying Mike should go with what he thinks, and Mike feeling uncomfortable that I didn't agree with his approach.

Mike quickly saw that this was a key point in our new forming work relationship.  He opened up a conversation about how we each have our own, well established ways of doing things, and we'll need to work all the time to establish new "ways" that work for us as a pair.  Just the act of having that conversation has helped improve our recent work together, and I think returning to that principle of building this new relationship will keep us on track.

It was a great chat, and one I'm thankful we had this early in the company.  I wondered afterwards, how many other work relationships could improve if they had a similar conversation.  My hunch is that peer relationships in all types of companies could do with a little open conversation and mutual admiration.


  1. ahh bar de la mer days...

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