Monday Motivator: The Power of Win-Win

If you engage in any social media these days, you may wonder whatever happened to the idea of “Win-Win”.

It often feels like we are living in a “What have you done for me lately” world. Even in situations where the other side may seem clearly to be in the wrong, there is little compassion to understand what’s going on behind the mask. In the last 30 days I’ve heard, “Lock her / him up.” “Let’s take them down.” “Our job is to put them out of business.” and “Look out for Number One.”

It’s easy to create enemies. What’s much harder is to great Win-Win scenarios, where both sides can grow, move forward and prosper. The not so secret secret we often forget is this:

Win-Win makes both sides stronger.

Habit 4 of Stephen Covey‘s 7 Habits of Highly Successful People, hints at the exponential power that can be generated when everyone involved feels like they benefit.

Here’s how the Franklin / Covey website defines Win-Win: “Win-win sees life as a cooperative arena, not a competitive one. Win-Win is a frame of mind and heart that constantly seeks mutual benefit in all human interactions. Win-win means agreements or solutions are mutually beneficial and satisfying. We both get to eat the pie, and it tastes pretty darn good!”

The puzzle is crafting a solution that is not just the “least objectionable alternative”, but truly adds value all around. Katie Shonk, writing for the Harvard Business Review shares four business tools that can be helpful and some powerful Win-Win Negotiating Strategies. A commonality Katie shares with The Center for Management and Organizational Effectiveness is to do joint fact finding to understand all sides of an issue.

Collaborative problem solving can turn opposing teams into profitable partnerships.

Franklin / Covey concludes their discussion about Win-Win with three mindsets to take into every negotiation:

Integrity, maturity and an abundance mentality that assumes that there is enough for everyone.

When I decided to become an author of Detective Fiction, I attacked the craft in the same way I approached every profession in which I served. I sought out the best of the best and found ways to connect with them in win-win scenarios. I immersed myself in environments where other authors, both beginners and masters hung out. And I learned something fascinating.

In the writer space: Everyone I met wanted me to be successful. So naturally, I reflected that mindset right back. The wisdom of dozens of new friends armed me with tools for success. You can bet that whether or not I succeed, I’ll try to pay forward the many gifts so selflessly given and so gratefully received.

The Win-Win mentality mixes empathy, confidence, sensitivity and bravery to create what Franklin / Covey calls, “that balance between courage and consideration”.

It is the essence of true maturity and the key to success in whatever endeavor you undertake.