HOW TO WORK WELL WITH SOMEONE

  1. Assume they are competent.
    I know you've been burned before. So have I. Some people are terrible at what they're supposed to be doing. But everybody also deserves the benefit of the doubt. So assume their ideas are good, their experience is relevant, and their suggestions are well considered. Question your own assumptions as readily as you question theirs.
  2. Respect existing decisions.
    If you're coming in to an existing project, study the work they've already done and assume it was either done that way for a good reason, or at least that it is an acceptable way to do it. Be prepared to fit in to the existing framework and emulate the style and approach already in place unless or until you can clearly articulate a reason not to. Don't snowplow through with your own style just because it's how you usually do it.
  3. Keep your word.
    Do what you say you will do, say what you mean, and admit when you mess up. Be reliable. If you over promise don't cover. Just explain honestly and move on. If you change your mind be prepared to explain why and be open to discussion. Don't assume.
  4. Don't be afraid to push back.
    But all that aside, go to bat for the things that are important. You're on the project too because you have something to offer. If you've done all of the above you stand a good chance of receiving respect in return including careful consideration of your position. Don't settle. But always be polite.
  5. Now go do some killer work together.