George Harrison. Tom Petty. Roy Orbison. Jeff Lynne. Bob Dylan. Sounds like a dream team of music, doesn’t it? It would really be something to hear if they all sang together. Oh wait–they did! For a brief interlude, on a whim and as a bit of a lark, they did. They were the Traveling Wilburys, and they were every bit as fabulous as you’d expect. They did, indeed, make beautiful music together. If you don’t believe me, watch this: Handle With Care.
Every one of these guys had made a name for himself independently. Each was an undisputed star in his own right. Yet, when the opportunity presented itself, not one of them hesitated to share the limelight with the others. They appreciated the respective talent of their peers and they embraced the notion of collaborating. No egos got in the way; they built on each other. Oh yeah–they had fun, too.
What could you do if you got together with others with similar talents? What kind of “music” would you make? What new heights would you reach?
Don’t be afraid to share the limelight. Chances are, you won’t be overshadowed; you’ll make a brighter light.
Ego is a funny thing. In most work environments, I have noticed that everyone wants to be a Michael Jordan. As a society we seem to under-appreciate the people making the pass on the fast break or setting the pick.
Sometimes our cult of individualism makes us forget the brightness of a genuine collaborative effort.