Fisherwick Collaborations has its roots in Northern Ireland, as does its principal dot connector, Paul Black.
Fisherwick is a street name in Ballymena, a hard-scrabble town in County Antrim, where Paul spent much of his pre-school life.
George Mitchell said of Northern Ireland that his experience taught him that the receptors people have for receiving information are sized in proportion to points of view they agree with. The space we have for “understanding” is therefore oriented to what we feel we want, or need, to understand. Over the years this pattern has caused misunderstanding, confusion, lost opportunity, entrenched bias and war in the North of Ireland, and many other parts of the world.
This is a pattern repeated too often in the relationships we build every day in business, government and society more broadly.
Too often we seek to claim, instead of working to create, value for ourselves and others. We get entrenched in our positions, and lose sight of our actual interests. We sit on “our” side of the table, and rarely take a trip up to the balcony to look at the dynamics from a new perspective.
Collaboration is the most sensible yet seemingly difficult thing we can do – in business, government, and society as a whole.
Through Fisherwick Collaborations we aim to help people identify with, and execute their plans on the basis that:
- dialogue is more productive than conflict;
- ‘you’ and ‘I’ are invariably weaker than ‘we’ and ‘us’; and,
- in seeking to understand the world, and one another, in new and different ways, we will find a more sustainable path.