Bridging the Gap: The Positive Power of Embracing Team Disagreements
When Denis Berilo and I launched Tech387 in April 2017, we were just two whiz-kid coders aged 20 and 21 with no understanding of how to run a business. We had dreams of making it big in the startup world, giving ourselves fancy titles, having the freedom to do what we wanted, and bragging on LinkedIn about our "perfect" life (just kidding). 😛 We shared one simple, laser-focused objective: earn millions of dollars by creating a huge app portfolio.
Living the Dream (Kinda)
As it turns out, Denis and I have different personalities, and our minds work differently, but our complimentary strengths are what have made us a dynamic duo in creating apps. We were pushing forward, living in our own Tech387 universe, ambitiously working non-stop. Our daily inspiration came from Arnold Schwarzenegger, Sylvester Stallone, the unstoppable David Goggins, and many others.
Tech387 was the only thing we had, and so we put our heart and souls into it. We sacrificed everything that could have been sacrificed. No breaks, no holidays—just constantly working and solving problems. After some initial success, however, challenges started coming at us faster than we could handle them, and the associated stress and exhaustion began to weigh on us. In hindsight, perhaps our “childish ambitions” were a little naive concerning how excruciatingly difficult this journey would actually be.
Clash of the Titans
As time rolled on, our dreams collided with reality. We started butting heads, realizing that our ways of doing things were polar opposites. We became stubborn, refusing to budge on our perspectives. It got so bad that there were times we sat in the same room for hours without saying a word to each other. Tech387 and our friendship were falling apart, and given how close we were, and given the level of blood, sweat, and tears that we put into the business, this gloomy period hit us hard.
Egos, Be Gone!
We were at a crossroads, we either had to change the way we were working together, or allow our business and friendship to fail. We decided to hit the reset button, focusing on what was best for Tech387 rather than on our own egos.
We still maintained a degree of self pride (who doesn't at that age?). After all, no one taught us how to communicate, resolve issues, or constructively give and receive feedback, and we were stubborn about accepting ideas different from our own or admitting that such ideas were better for the business. Gradually, and somewhat miraculously, however, we acquired a sense of humility and started listening to each other. Over time, we drastically improved our relationship and the health of the business.
Those disagreements made us who we are today. We learned to face our disagreements no matter how difficult the conversations were, we learned to be honest, and ultimately we learned to appreciate our different viewpoints, thus turning clashes into opportunities for better outcomes.
By the way, this isn't just a startup thing. While working with enterprise-level organizations, we have both observed and experienced the same issues and problems. So we speak from experience when we say that big corporations face some of the same challenges. Failing to address disagreements before launching your startup can result in a lingering disharmony throughout your professional journey.
Triumph Against the Odds
We're proud that we developed the courage to acquire a sense of humility, learned to appreciate each other's perspectives, and ultimately prevent our friendship and company from falling apart. It truly was a defining moment in Tech387's history, and it was the foundation for which we eventually built an awesome team, embraced new perspectives, and watched the company grow.
So, here's the moral of our story: embrace life's challenges, learn from them, and make the most of them. You never know what the universe has in store for you, and sometimes, accepting others' ideas is the key to unlocking greatness.
Our journey taught us that overcoming disagreements isn't just about surviving—it's about thriving. It prepared us for the real world where challenges are the norm, not the exception. You never know why something is happening the way it is, the universe might be trying to teach you something, and the only way to unlock it is to humble yourself and accept other people.
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