A Psychology Today report offered a new perspective on the much talked about Maslow’s hierarchy of needs. The idea of ‘Workplace’ is shifting across all possibilities to support telecommuters plus lower work space costs. With this shift is less physical interface with colleagues. Steve Jobs and Harmut Esslinger kept working together in one space for their purpose.

This is what Steve Denning, contributor to Forbes shares on the topic of working together to  collaborate:

“In reality, Rutledge’s rewired version of psychological needs suggests a more realistic set of multiple paths, through social connection, to meet our varying psychology needs. What it implies, and the experience of radical management confirms, is that getting work done by people working together in self-organizing teams can meet most people’s psychological needs without positing unrealistic goals of self-actualization as the be-all and end-all of life.”

In the wellness industry, self-actualization is identified by industry terms like ‘mindfulness’, ‘deep emotional work’, ‘letting go’, or ‘believe in the power within’. When terms are unfamiliar then initial self-actualize of doing ‘it’ may be skewed. For example, letting go of a job instead of letting go of harbored anger towards a colleague.

‘Self-organizing’ is similar to ‘self-regulation’. Both are necessary emotional actions for the effectiveness of collaboration.

Ignored, unloved babies have a low survival rate because humans need relationship to thrive. Infants are immature to self-actualization of ‘be’-longing with someone without physical touch. Relational habits begin at this infancy stage.  Through life experiences we self-organize into roles as a Thinker and Doer. To be and improve upon those roles we ‘self-regulate‘  to achieve focus on the experience.

Self-actualization is organizing and regulating to be an effective collaborator.

Creativity is a Doer role because it turns thought into tangible results through tools like a pencil, clay, technology….brainstorming with colleagues. The act of creating ignites the Thinker role into self-organizing the imagination. Those thoughts become concrete through communication. This naturally self-regulates the mental and physical tension of feeling both excitement and anxiety through using creative tools.

Creativity is a tool that naturally connects organizing to regulating.  

When creating there is collaboration to gain feedback or direction to consider alternative perspective. With collaboration often conflict emerges. Conflict is good; it’s natural to disagree. Steve Jobs and Hartmut Esslinger agreed on going the best way together while they repeatedly disagreed on the first Macintosh Computer design. Their method was if one disagreed they moved on to a completely new approach. They took their creative roles as one team. Both had to be in agreement, not to settle.

The Thomas-Kilmann Conflict Mode Instrument identifies conflict roles:


  1. Sensitive issues on the table
  2. While identify/disallow personal attack

Real-Time Permission

  1. Be objective to resolve issue
  2. Healthy disagreement
  3. Point out and outcomes of conversation
Questions to Ask:
  1. What creative tools are incorporated in the workplace within roles and socialization?
  2. When working collaboratively what boundaries are in place for effective communication?
  3. How often do emotions cause tension when collaborating?

Emotional behaviors may be regulated and organized through creative tools. Self-actualization through creative tools and collaboration achieves competitive advantage. Performance outcomes from collaboration produces efficient production of ideas and products for all involved. To learn the use of creative tools for regulating emotional behaviors that achieve positive outcomes purchase our Equip Package.

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