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The problem for me this week arises from a revelation from last week (Peter’s feedback on my LJ and my own personal reflection on events); figuring out how to change my behaviour in teams such that I don’t inhibit others (e.g. my MikesBikes team) from thinking for themselves.

Realising that this was truly the case – I can reflect several other situations where it has happened – was quite unsettling in itself. It changed my view of myself because I hadn’t previously seen it in me – which is scary, because I’ve come to think that I’m aware of who I am. Being told that I have “room to improve” (to put it nicely) creates self-doubt because I think what else is there that I think I am is not actually what I am? But I’ve realised that this might constantly be the case; I am changing and I don’t even know it; it’s making sure that I’m changing to where I want to be that is the issue.

 

I talked to my dad about how to stop myself from hindering the team (dad’s good at this sort of thing J) and he asked me how I normally talk with my team. I said that we normally will be discussing a decision, and I’ll say what I think and refer to some spreadsheets if I’ve done some research, and then we’ll kind of discuss that and everyone will have input. He made me realise that by me having input at the beginning, I’m limiting everyone else’s thinking to just mine, because they don’t have a chance to come up with their own solutions but just evaluate mine. So he suggested that I take a step back, controlling my input.

I thought about this, and proposed to my CEO that I do the following (she had read my journal and we’d discussed it a bit): I would, rather than presenting my ideas first (perhaps regarding a particular decision), listen to everyone’s ideas first. Then, I would comment with things like – “have you thought about the effect of X on Y?” or “what if you changed A to achieve B instead – would that be better or worse?” So my input would be at the end (and definitely based on others’ inputs), and that way everyone would have a chance to think so that our team could truly become a real, mutually accountable team (Katzenbach & Smith, 1992). My CEO’s response was that yes, she thought this was a good idea, but she didn’t think that me not giving any "quantitative” input was a good idea – they valued my numerical skill. I agreed with this – I need to get a balance of not backing off completely, but not taking charge of everything.

 

This week’s group meeting was kind of a bit hectic though, so I can’t really say if I’ve successfully started to change me. I notice that in the rush I forget most of this; I get caught up with the game and I’ll have to remember to control my input especially in these times.

 

I don’t think that there’s a simple, one-time-action solution for this, but rather, it’s a tweaking/trial that I’ll have to watch. Completing Daudelin’s  (1996) learning cycle may take some time for this problem.

 

References:

Daudelin, M. W. (1996). Learning from experience through reflection. Organizational Dynamics, 24(3), 36—48

Katzenbach, J. R. & Smith, D. K. (1992). Why teams matter. McKinsey Quarterly, (3), 3--27

2 Comments

  1. To start off, I find it really interesting the way you seem to connect your journals. You do not drop issues that are unresolved in past weeks and I would imagine that this helps you complete the learning cycle and be as considerate as possible. In week 4 I also observed this and commended you for it because you wrote a very interesting learning journal, although it did approach your struggles in a very unique way. Your writing is still very clear and easy to follow along. I think that the way you structured this journal makes it even more clear than the other one, considering you seem to base your structure on the many stages of Daudelin's Learning Cycle. You also incorporated the readings in a unique way where you did not go into what they said specifically but rather just used them as a support and it seems to have worked quite successfully. My only critique would be that since we are supposed to be working with such a small word count it might be worth trying to go through and condense some of your thoughts. Your learning journal is very thorough, which definitely works to your advantage in terms of clarity, but it might be worth trying to go through and edit it one more time to see if you can make your thoughts come across all the more concisely by getting rid of any fluff. I commended your unique approach in week 4 and want to continue to commend your work now. You have definitely improved and followed the more expected structure of a learning journal, but you also have not lost the quirk which made your writing so interesting to read.

  2. sorry for the slightly late feedback (been juggling work and experiencing a power cut) which has meant im 15 mins late... not intentional. 

    i re-read your journal from week 4 before reading your most recent journal. I also re-read the feedback i gave you in week 4. I feel like you have made a huge improvement in terms of flow and structure of your journal. the questions you ask you answer and also its more succinct and in depth from what you previously wrote. I feel this is better as you stuck to a few questions and didn't expand into many different topics - the focused structure is a good structure. 

    As mentioned above, I also like how you have connected your previous weeks journals and therefore treated them all as a whole and not independently. I feel this constant mention to past journals and including them all and constantly reflecting on the past will strongly help you for your summative journal. 

    I feel your journal this week was interesting and I can see why you thought that was a serious issue - maybe you could have also bought in some content from the reading about leaders and followers as you clearly demonstrate leadership and follower issues within your team (which is good and bad). 

    I like how you havn't just incorporated the readings for the week for the sake of it, but truly focused on an issue and stuck to it and critiqued it well. I feel like you will do very well in your summative journal.

    I hope the last week of Mikes Bikes goes well for you and your team.