INSTANT MBA: The Person With The Most Ideas Isn't Always The Most Valuable Worker

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Today’s advice comes from Tim Brown, chief executive officer at IDEO, via LinkedIn

“At IDEO, we’ve found that people who are obsessed with their own ideas aren’t very good at collaborating with others. And if you’re trying to solve complex problems — which we’re often asked to do — you need multiple minds working together to arrive at the best solutions.”

Brown says that IDEO tries to foster a work culture where helping others is the norm. An office that only celebrates the “lone genius” will harbor conflict and competition. Projects languish and your company ends up losing good ideas. The person who racks up the most ideas is not as valuable if they don’t help others succeed.

“During job interviews, l listen for a couple things. When people repeatedly say “I,” not “we,” when recounting their accomplishments, I get suspicious. But if they’re generous with giving credit and talk about how someone else was instrumental in their progress, I know that they give help as well as receive it.”

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