Friday, 11 December 2009

When Control Freaks Collide

This week, CC director Ali Muirden blogs about what it's like to work with a control freak. It takes one to know one!
In theory, being in partnership with Lorelei shouldn’t work!

I’m sure if the two of us took one of those psychometric tests, all the experts in the land would say 'you’re both way too similar in terms of personality traits for this to ever work!'

For instance, I’m bossy, controlling, decisive, impatient - and that’s just for starters! And, quite frankly, so is Lorelei!

My family would say that “you don’t suffer fools gladly” and my husband would definitely add “you hate being in the wrong!” and I hate to admit it, but they are so right!

So how do Lorelei and I manage to work so well together and not spend our days battling to be the Alpha female in our business?

Well, I really believe reason we don’t, and this is the crucial point, we both totally and absolutely respect the other’s abilities and the skills they bring to the partnership.

I respect her editorial abilities and her meticulous attention to every grammatical detail, her quick responses and speed of turn around of a task, her humour, her willingness to learn new things, her eye for detail especially when it comes to design and, most of all, her skill at charming the best out of everybody we work with.

So, for the purposes of this Blog entry and with some trepidation, I asked Lorelei what she thought about me and she said:

“I agree with you – it’s all about respect and trust. I respect your expertise, and trust absolutely that you will do what you say you will. You’re also the least neurotic person I know – and I think that’s key. A control freak who’s neurotic is a nightmare – but a ‘control freak’ that’s as balanced as you are is a force to be reckoned with! If you want something done – ask a control freak! I wouldn’t want to work with someone who had to be led all the time… I’m much happier working shoulder to shoulder with someone I admire!”

I also think that when we do disagree, because of this admiration for each other’s abilities we’re able to be rational, consider the other person’s opinion and discuss our views calmly and reasonably. To date when we have disagreed over something we’ve always found a solution that leaves both of us pleased with the end result and that’s what really matters. - AM

We’d love to know: How do you cope with disagreements with colleagues at work?

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