The past few months have been an absolute whirlwind, mostly due to my tendency to bite off more than I can chew (both literally and figuratively). As you probably already know, I recently launched the Collaboreat which seems to have taken over my life, presenting me with loads of learning opportunities, joys, struggles, and fun. One of the greatest parts about this new project is learning to handle, have fun with, and make the most of collaborations.
The Collaboreat, as the name suggests, is a collaborative project. Not only do we have a small team working constantly to make our blogazine better, but we also run on the submissions and contributions of other bloggers all over the world. While I’ve done smaller collaborations in the past, I have never done something so large and so reliant on other people!
To be honest, I’m not sure where I got the idea to start something so group-oriented. I’m typically not a team player. As in, the one time I worked on a team professionally I was the one that liked to take on the solo projects and sit in my cubicle by myself, headphones on so I could tune out the world. I have a giant ego and love my own ideas and, being incredibly stubborn, I don’t like to give those ideas up in favor of someone else’s. I love creating my own processes and I hate having to teach those processes to others, mostly because I’m a sucky teacher but also because I like to just do the work. Team stuff is just not my thing.
Yet here I am, working with a team and constantly working with more and more new people that are eager to help out! And boy has it been awesome.
I couldn’t run the Collaboreat without my awesome team. I’ve been able to hand off tasks that I don’t have the time or I’m just not well-suited for (my ego had a hard time admitting to that). As I’ve listened to their ideas and really been open to their thoughts, I’ve learned so much and have been able to improve our processes and content in ways that I never could’ve come up with on my own. Not to mention I’ve been able to get to know these amazing people and what they’re all about!
So my blogging friends, I must highly encourage you to get involved in an awesome collaboration with another blogger RIGHT AWAY.
Don’t be afraid to reach out!
If you have an idea and you think another blogger would be a perfect fit to help you out, don’t be afraid to send that initial email and see if they’d be interested. Whether or not it’s up their alley, they’ll be flattered that you thought of them to work with you on something that you care about! And chances are, they just might want on board. Regardless, you’ve opened up the door to get talking and start a relationship with that blogger. It’s a win win all across the board.
Be open to working with new people you may not have ever thought about.
I have to be honest with you, my team is made up of people I never really expected to work with. It’s not to say they aren’t talented or not perfect for the job, but they weren’t close friends or people I’d known for a long time. One I had never even had a real conversation with and another I met only a month before. Turns it, we make a great team! I couldn’t be happier with the way things have turned out and I’m so lucky that they wanted to be a part of this dream of mine! So don’t underestimate people or set your expectations too high or expect your best blogging friend to want to instantly jump on board. Keep an open mind!
Participate in smaller collaborations!
Your first collaboration doesn’t have to be epic or longterm or extensive. Try your hand at a quick one-time project, like the recipe swap I hosted with Latrina. Cohost a linkup that you like taking part in. Gather a group of bloggers to post on a certain theme with you. Try out something smaller and see how it goes! Have fun getting to know other bloggers and working with them.
Play to your strengths and recruit others and their great strengths.
I know I’m no good at social media. I’ve done a lot of research on it and know my stuff but I hate the actual work of managing social accounts and posting regularly. It’s a chore to me and because I hate it so much I don’t do the best that I can simply because I just want to get it checked off my to-do list. So I asked someone to help me with that! In the meantime, I can focus on what I do best- coming up with ideas, editing content, providing the image for our work, and managing the bigger picture of it all. If you know you aren’t great at something, reach out to others that might be better and would want to join you! Create the perfect team full of all the skills and strong-suits that you project needs!
Get creative and team up with other great bloggers to start something fresh and new. Blog collaborations can be so much fun and can teach you so much about making your own content better as well as how to work with others. Definitely give it a try sometime!