Collaboration, community, and support, these are just a handful of my many values.

Last week I attended the funeral of a much-loved family friend and extended family member. I was humbled by the kind words and admiration so many people had for this lady. She truly left her mark on this world and a legacy that will be cherished by many.

What happened to me during the service as I experienced an overwhelming amount of emotion and memories. You see, what many people do not know about me is that I was raised in a religious family that followed the teachings of the Mormon church. The service I was attending was held in the very same chapel I spent many a Sunday morning in and a lot of the people at the service were somehow distantly related or people who were a part of a big chunk of my childhood.

Although I have not been a member of the Mormon church since my early teens, still to this day, there are certain principles of the church that I still hold onto, and the lessons I learned about collaboration, community and giving are still very much a part of my life.

I’ve always seen the value in community and collaboration, as a child I remember how if a member of the church (mainly the mums) was sick we would cook meals and drop them off for them to lend a helping hand and ease the burden. There was always a team of people at the ready to help out with meals or household projects and no job was ever to big or too small to offer a helping hand. We were always involved in many social events and sporting activities (mainly basketball). We were such a big part of a great social group of people.

To this day I still love giving and helping out where I can to ease the burden for someone, I also LOVE to socialise and to be a part of so much going on around me. Helping people lights me up, I guess that’s why I love my business so much because I get an opportunity to help so many people in different ways.

My biggest love to this day would be community and collaboration. Although I may not be a part of a church community, I’m heavily involved in other communities. I’ve signed myself up for mastermind communities, charitable communities, support communities and business communities. Why, because I see the value in the support a community brings and this is why I network with so many people in so many different circles.

If you look up the definition of collaboration in the dictionary it says, the situation of two or more people working together to create or achieve the same thing. This to me is exactly what we do when we create a community of like-minded people who are all out to achieve the same thing.

This is the reason why now there are so many business networking groups, so many meetups, religious groups, exercise or fitness groups, and the list goes on. There is so much value that can be gained from becoming a part of a community and collaborate. Especially when it comes to growing yourself and your business. Like I’ve said before, word-of-mouth and a referral from someone are more influential and trustworthy than any marketing or advertising.

Collaboration isn’t about being best friends or even necessarily liking everyone within your group or in your community. It is about putting all and any baggage aside, bringing the best version of yourself to the table, and focusing on the common goal.

If you think about the people or the leaders you admire the most or the products you use every day, I can guarantee you they have come about from collaboration. Either with other people and their connections or collaborating as a part of a team of people all out to achieve the same goal. Think of how different our lives would be if we didn’t have teams of people collaborating with each other on improving the ways we communicate through technology (i.e. mobile phones and email and cloud services etc).

Unfortunately, so many people still fear collaboration, they still see other people and other businesses as a threat. But here’s the thing, collaboration isn’t about giving up your individuality, it’s about realising your potential, a potential that you may have otherwise never been able to reach. It’s about bringing your many gifts to the table and sharing them in pursuit of a common goal. It’s about bringing your ideas, your passion, your mind, heart, and soul to your leadership and culture and having that flow through your business and your community.

So my tip this week is to get out there is to get yourself involved in a group that suits you and network with other business owners, engage with your community, find a way to collaborate with the people around you and make sure everyone is aware you offer a fantastic product and outstanding service.

I’ll finish off this week’s #mbbiztip with words from the inspirational Helen Keller, she said: “Alone we can do so little, together we can do so much”.

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