I am very happy to report that our team has managed to bounce back from the brink of death with overflowing losses into the healthy, happy zone of small profits. I am extremely happy that there is finally a positive note happening and that Peter managed to push us into an awareness of what we've been missing all along. I would say, despite this small success, that I am still floundering within my own mind-set that isn't allowing me to seek help to remedy my mistakes or learn to help myself out of tough situations. Instead I find myself trying to "go it alone" and tackle things without seeking external help when things get dire.
When I think of reasoning for this, it really goes back to my own past experiences in both team situations and alone. I have had an overly healthy share of scepticism for how much others can help and am too proud of my own abilities. If I find myself failing at something I feel a sense of shame and embarrassment that is disproportionately large for failed task. Asking for help I often feel is failing at my task and revealing my weakness. Also within teams I frequently feel that I put myself at the weak end of the interactions if I am the one that doesn't fully understand situations so I have tended towards trying to solve things within my own mind. There is also amongst this, a definite awareness that our marks may well be affected by the effort that we are perceived to have been putting in to this assignment and I had in the past felt that I was relatively well versed with business simulations and to ask questions would be to put under scrutiny how much preparation I had put in.
I think essentially that the case here was fear to seek out Peter's or anyone else's help in the situation in order to avoid any negative responses from these parties. In my definition of success, external help was some form of cheating and my desire to do well on my own steam was overwhelming. Upon close reflection on this idea, I realised that I am not comfortable with failure because I always shelter myself from it and am somewhat paralysed by failing rather than getting back on that figurative horse, I never allowed myself to fall out of the saddle and actually just hung with one foot in the stirrup as it ran full speed. This is much like Argyris (2002) noted where not enough failures have been experienced and so I defensively respond instead of learning from the failure. Despite all of these reflective journals, I am learning how to reflect but have managed to skim over learning from my own mistakes within my team which is also damaging to the other members since they don't benefit from a CEO with a growing ability to solve strategic problems.
Now that the group received help, I realise that it was foolish of me to maintain my attitude in the sense of not seeking help. There are a few actions that I could take over the next few weeks. The most obvious is to carefully apply what we have already learnt about MikesBikes this week and continue to seek out Peter's help to check how our decisions are going or any confusions that we hold. I am definitely pushing towards this option rather than letting it slide again. I suppose the flaw with this plan is that I waited so long to seek out answers to the really big issues that it is no longer the perfect plan since we can only really consult Peter for the next decision and then we are somewhat powerless. But I will seek out his help as best I can.
I plan to seek more help in my other classes too in regards to ever-nearing assignments. Pride is getting in my way and it's time to take some big steps towards helping myself. I don't want to jeopardise any more grades or opportunities to learn and connect with those around me.
Argyris, C. (1991). Teaching smart people how to learn. Reflections, 4(2), 4--15