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MikesBikes has been rough. Let me just say that now. I keep feeling that my team has developed a good plan, and I cannot find any flaws in our strategy and then we fail again. It was like the practice round gave us this false sense of confidence. We did so well then and we had good strategies and they seemed to make us successful. We went in with the same plans this time and are failing miserably. We have tried to make adjustments of course seeing as we are grouped with different teams, but we are stuck.

But now let me stop and think, what am I learning from this? I am learning that if your fight is merely to keep your head above water it is going to be a constant struggle, but if you aim too high then you are not going to achieve what you need and that is its own problem. Finding that middle ground between having realistic goals that you can achieve and achieving goals that will actually make your company successful is definitely difficult. Another aspect of what I am learning is in support of what I read in the article “Charting Your Company’s Future,” by W. Chan Kim and Renée Mauborgne, where they discussed something called divergence. They use that word to discuss companies who start forming their strategies and making their decisions in an entirely reactive nature. They discuss how this hurts a company and all I can think as I read this is how my team has been making decisions. We started off with a plan, a strategy, and we even tested it during the practice round, but that strategy quickly failed us in this new world. What were we supposed to do but come up with a new plan as a reaction? And each week our plan is adjusting as we continue to do worse and worse. According to the reading this may not be in our benefit, but what choice do we have? I feel like we keep getting stuck in situations where we have to do the less than beneficial thing because that is the only way out of our situation. It would be nice to not be in these situations at all, but once you are there, there seems to be no other way out.

I would love to end this journal by continuing to the planning stage so I could have some action steps to fix the situation for next week, but I am stumped. I do not know what my plan could possibly be, but hopefully with some more reflection I can come up with an idea before things get any worse for my team.

 

References:

Kim, W. C. & Mauborgne, R. (2002). Charting your company's future. Harvard Business Review, 80(6), 76--83

2 Comments

  1. Hi Jesse! Of course I couldn't agree more (as your team mate), Mikesbikes is definitely kicking our butts and we don't seem to be able to find a solution! I enjoyed reading your perspective on our group processes which I thought were very accurate. To make this journal better you could have followed Daudelin's structure a little more closely. Clearly this journal is reflective and therefore could have benefited from following Daudelin's stages of the reflection process of problem articulation, problem analysis, testing of a theory and action. You articulated your problem with Mikesbikes and made some good analysis such as a lack of sticking to a single strategy. As you pointed out you haven't made any reflective discoveries as of yet, but some form of brainstorm of potential reasons for the teams failure could have been useful to develop a tentative theory. Following the ideas of this weeks reading by Argyris on the potential for double loop learning, you could have brought a nice bit of theory into your writing to add some depth revolving around the teams lack of ability to learn from mistakes. Cheers

  2. I completely agree with you on your first paragraph, and is exactly how I feel also. Your writing style is fun and enjoyable to read. I like how you have used the relevant reading to how you feel this week and what you have learned. However, I would suggest that you stick to the assigned readings for each week, as I think that Peter has purposely chosen certain readings for each week in order to help us for the coming week. Also, although you (and we as a team) have reached a stump, there is always something no matter how small or big that you can reflect on and learn from. For example, you could look at broader more external forces (such as other groups in our country) and how they can be encountered in the MikesBikes simulation to help us, or as Angus stated, looking back to see where we went wrong in order to effectively use Daudelin's reflective learning model and the higher levels of Bloom's taxonomy. Good luck for the next journal!