The beauty of boomer women in business is their collective spirit of collaboration. Rather than being intimidated by a potential business competitor, boomer women will often seek out ways to cross-promote, pool resources, and support one another.

They understand that there is enough business for all of us, and the more they work together, the greater the demand for their particular product or service. And this is a good thing…when you carefully select the women with whom you align yourself.

And while there are magnificent, talented, brilliant boomer women that you\’d be smart to connect with, what happens when a team connections fall out of balance?

Unequal relationships can make even the most beautiful project ugly. The Drama Mama who stirs the pot and encourages conflict because that\’s the only place she\’s comfortable can make the simplest meeting complicated. The Put-Upon Martyr who guesses “she just has to do everything for it to be done right” can send you right out the door and into the arms of a corporate recruiter.

Or, how about the The Email Ogre who keeps her mouth shut in person but then stands 10 feet tall behind her keyboard? Or, The Determined Diva who is helpless until it comes to taking credit?

No doubt these people dance throughout your network. But instead of regarding such characters as simply having “creative temperaments” that you must deal with, consider the cost of doing business with them.

You lose productivity, which impacts your bottom line. You get tired of arguing and end up giving away core aspects of your creative vision, which impacts your bottom line. You spend all of your time giving to the project, and they don\’t, which only impacts their collective bottom line for the better.

You\’re worn out, can\’t sleep, and swear you\’re developing an ulcer, which costs you far more in your personal life than you will ever be paid. It also robs you of the passion you had for your project when you began, which impacts the bottom line in that it chips away at your drive for the work you do.

Consider these unequal relationships as the liability they have become in your business of creating powerful results…because when the team is disempowered, the message is fractured. Instead, balance out the people you do business with and network with to reflect a more even approach. When the team you put together is top-notch, so too is the end product.

When first discussing a potential project, don\’t just cover who will do what; interview each other. What frustrated you about your last project? What is your work style? What is her communication style? Are these compatible?

Instead of jumping into projects too fast, hang back first and do some homework. What other team endeavors has this potential collaborator been involved with? What do her colleagues think of her ability and demeanor? What have you observed about this person at networking events or other chance encounters?

Maya Angelou wrote that “when people show you who they are, believe them.” Honor your creative vision by waiting until you\’ve put together a balanced team, and enjoy the bottom line success that follows.

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