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Why cooperation?

Competition forces people to improve their products or services, and hence

benefits the recipients of these products or services. Cooperation, however, plays
an even more important role in development of individuals and the society as a
whole, because it drastically increases the scale of these improvements. Working
in groups and teams far increases the productivity of individuals. Thus, I firmly
believe children should be taught to cooperate rather than to compete.
Cooperation and the partnership model of competition. Cooperation has
been defined as people playing with one another rather than against another,
they play to overcome challenges, not to overcome other people; and they are
freed by the very structure of the game to enjoy the play experience itself.
Another definition of cooperation is working together willingly to achieve a
common purpose. Thus, if the partnership model of competition is apparent,
young athletes would be cooperating within the competition. For example,
individuals would view their game as an opportunity to learn and become better
and be appreciative of the excellent opponent to be playing against. By
incorporating a taskoriented or cooperative climate, the experience of
competition provides youth lessons in appropriate conflict resolution skills, more
tolerant attitudes, and a better sense of community. A cooperative attitude by the
team implies that the effort of each player is as important as the ability of each
player. Thus, all players are important to the team regardless of their actual skill,
and the players support each other throughout the competition. Players with a
cooperative spirit within competition play to overcome challenges within the
sport, not to overcome people.19 Each player is required to provide individual
effort and a sense of competence in order to help the team achieve its goal of
being the best that it can be. However, because the competition is balanced with
cooperative skills such as mastery of a skill or effort, the youth can feel
successful whether he or she is the winner of the game, event, or match.
Cooperation skills within the competition promote a sense of community and

Cooperation is a significant contributing factor to the development of society.

While competition generally ends in a win-lose result, cooperation advocates that
one plus one is larger than two, three or even a larger number. For example, the
competition of two business firms would ultimately lead to the result that one
becomes stronger and the other fails and goes out of business. However, if they
cooperate with each other successfully, they may group together to form an
enterprise larger than the mere sum of the two. The more successful cooperation
there is, the better the society develops. Thus, cooperation should be taught to
children, because eventually they will be the executives of important
Admittedly, competition also plays a significant role in many areas. Stressed by
the competition, individuals and organizations have to struggle to survive, and so
they are forced to make improvements and develop.

However, in comparison, cooperation is more effective in helping individuals and

societies to develop, because it benefits not only individuals, but also society as a
whole. The reality is that children should be taught both, but if forced to choose
only one, parents should undoubtedly teach their kids to cooperate rather than to

If in fact competition brings out the "beast" in us, then research demonstrates
that cooperation surely brings out the "best" in us. This finding has been held in
virtually every occupation, skill, or behavior tested. For instance, scientists who
consider themselves cooperative tend to have more published articles than their
competitive colleagues. Cooperative businesspeople have higher salaries. From
elementary grades to college, cooperative students have higher grade point
averages. Personnel directors who work together have fewer job vacancies to
fill. And, not surprisingly, cooperation increases creativity. Unfortunately, most
people are not taught cooperative skills.

"More students feel good about themselves as learners when they

cooperate. Their self-esteem goes up, they have a better sense of
community, belonging, and acceptance. One can also extrapolate this
finding to any setting."

We are concerned that too much unsupported emphasis is placed on competition.

Moreover, they feel that the means by which individuals once learned
cooperative skills are eroding. "There are a lot of reasons to worry. Some

of the standard ways that people once learned to cooperate - home, churches,
communities - are not operating as they did a generation ago. Teaching young
people how to cooperate does not receive the appropriate level of interest." As a
result, competition breeds unabated.
It seems that cooperation has an impact on individuals together in several key
areas. Not only does it create a more fluid leadership, but it allows everyone to
participate actively without fear of censure. Cooperation also has an impact on
an individual's perception of the work environment.
In this study, the more cooperative individuals were better adjusted
psychologically and physically healthier than their more competitive colleagues.
It seems that competition, or the constant feeling that you have to work against
something, has unhealthy physical side effects. Cooperation, and otherprosocial/unselfish behaviors, tend to have positive side effects. o that point, limited
evidence suggests that cooperation generates a type of "runner's high."
Although the research is not definitive, it is promising. Like those individuals who
exercise regularly, people who are cooperative and help others also experience a
type of "high," which might better be described as calmness or sense of freedom
from stress. As the researchers have shown, once this cooperation, not
competition, is preferred.

There's no doubt that a cooperative environment increases the number of ideas,

improves the quality of the outcome, and facilitates a better working
environment, cooperation must be done in such a way as to protect the integrity
of the project at hand." Simply put, cooperation is the rule, but objectivity must
be maintained.
The predominance of a vision of the company based on the assumptions of the
classical economy competition and tendency towards individual usefulness
have made us forget how the essence of the company is firstly its organization,
or rather the search for an articulated and complex form of cooperation. The
(theoretical) success of the agency theory has reduced each social action to the
relationship between an individual and a system of extrinsic incentives, with each
problem seemingly solvable only with the adequate mix of incentives that reward
only the best and most worthy.
An organization is firstly the result of the evolution of humanity, based on the
complete development of our capability to collaborate. The complexity of
collaborating is not underestimated, so much so that Barnard points out its
temporary nature and proposes that in fact managements main role is to
guarantee it. But his contribution has been suppressed by a transposition of the
purpose of organisations which, by the complex achievement of individual
collaborative capability, have been reduced to gyms for exercising competition.

What comes to mind when you think cooperate? Does it needle you? Make you
think of weakness? That you are giving in? Those are some old ways of thinking
about cooperation but today we have a new name for it: joint ventures. Joint
ventures are not really a new idea. Back when I was in graduate school, Social
Psychology was working with the idea of cooperation [win-win strategies] and the
Boston area was one place this idea was popular. [I have always felt that words
and concepts we use in any age are just older concepts repackaged in modern
labels. The win-win of my graduate school days is now Joint Ventures just as selffulfilling prophecy is now Law of Attraction.]
One research study back then showed that when there is a common enemy you
could work together to reach a goal; even if you were competitors or did not like
each other.Today, that common enemy need not be an enemy, but instead, a
goal to aspire to such as money or success. How does cooperation help your
business? Everybody gains something they want. Working together ensures a
win-win scenario for both businesses. Lets look at how the win-win scenario of
Joint Ventures can work. You find people or businesses with similar interests or
goals or similar customer bases. Even those you might have thought of as the
competition and think how you might help each other.
Say, for example, I am writing a book for new parents. I ask myself who else has
a product for that market - or who already serves that market. I might reach out
to toy stores, diaper companies, hospitals - businesses with babies as a focus - to
see if they have an interest in working with me. I suggest they buy my book and

give it away to their customers/clients. The book can be produced with different
covers so each company has a version with their logo and information printed on
it. I win because I sell books in large quantities. My partners win because they
have happy clients who appreciate getting a gift along with the service. And their
business name is being spread around the community of new parents.
Another example: I do teleseminars. Your business does not but you have a
customer base [list] who may have an interest in my product. We cross promote
my teleseminars your base and mine listen and some buy my product. You win
because you are receiving a healthy percentage of the total sales no matter
whose list was buying. I still make money and Ive added names to my own list.
Your customers may also like that you help others by promoting their products.
There are many more ways to work together in a Joint Venture and there are
great resources for finding and approaching potential joint venture partners. And
Joint Ventures are great business opportunities in difficult economic times.