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This week we really needed to  re-evaluate our strategy and climb our way out of this hole we have found ourselves in.

A large reason for the decline in some key areas may have been the focus we put on the development and release of bikes. This worries me because I am the marketing person so I feel like if the blame had to fall on someone it would be on me. Luckily our team has a very collaborative approach and from that stems mutual accountability. Looking back on one of my first journals, I state the importance of mutual accountability (Katzenbach and Smith, 1992), and I still feel the same way. Blaming one member of the team for the teams overall poor performance never ends well, and it couldn't really happen in our team anyway because we all input ideas into our decisions. However in decisions this week a few ideas came up that people were interested in that I had mentioned the previous week. Upon stating this, people couldn't remember me mentioning these ideas, even though they were good ones. So something I definitely have to work on next week is being more outspoken. I feel that I am good at contradicting and critiquing other people's ideas, but when it comes to fighting for my own ideas, I am lacking.  

Next week we will need to take a good look at our underlying strategy and make sure we were still heading along the right path. We need to go back to our strategic ideas that we decided upon in the first week and improve on those areas of the company.  Our performance in the last roll-over makes sense when you look at the figures and how much we are spending. Interestingly enough, when I first saw our results I began to doubt our ability to do well in this simulation. I judged our performance based on what I saw on the surface, but upon digging a little deeper, I saw some figures that were still quite impressive. And once I realized we were still doing al right, I began to justify the position we were in. 'It's because we invested so much' etc. This kind of rationalization does not work in this simulation, instead of accepting why we are in this position I need to be asking myself the harder question i.e.  if we had invested differently, would we still be on top? Where have we gone wrong? How can we we get out of this situation?. It is important to look at our decisions from different angles and see if there is maybe a better /more efficient way to approach the decision for next time. However you really do learn from your past experiences (Davies and Easterby-Smith, 1984), so this total nosedive (although it also happened to us after the first roll-over) may help us in the future. The first roll-over nosedive was different because we only had one bike to sell and invested a lot in new development to get to the market first. 

This weeks nosedive sees us drastically dropping in SHV but still maintaining the second highest sales in our world. The aspects we have to look at are different, we need to look at cutting our costs so that our sales revenue means profit, rather than all going towards paying back our debt! This week in Wednesday's class time Peter commented on our marketing spend value, and we didn't really understand why he bothered to comment on it. Maybe this figure stood out to Peter because he has learnt from experience (Davies and Easerby-Smith, 1984) -- he has seen so many teams work on this simulation he must find it easier to identify where problems are stemming from for most teams. We really should have listened to him, we did cut our spending on PR by a bit, but I don't think it was enough. Now will we finally understand our limits? Will our performance this week mean we will put more effort into number crunching? Only time will tell. If we really focus next week I do believe we can recuperate from this crash, next roll-over will be such an important one for the future of our company.

Reference List

Davies, J., & Easterby-Smith, M. (1984). Learning and developing from managerial work experiencesJournal of Management Studies, 21(2), 169--182. doi:10.1111/j.1467-6486.1984.tb00230.x

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

2 Comments

  1. This reflection does a good job at showing that you understand the readings and have learnt how to use them in practice. You have followed Dandelions guidelines in exclaiming your problem (getting a better simulation score)  and then showing how you will solve it whilst also using the readings to relate. I found your discussion very interesting to read and think that you have produced a good reflection of your learning this week. I am sure with this amount of attention to detail and effort that your team is bound to do well! All the best and great work

  2. There are a couple of things that I particularly like in this learning journal. First, you go back and draw on relevant theoretical content (for the issue you are facing), rather than whatever is the reading of the week. Secondly, you make linkages across the weeks (in terms of your experiences). 

    Peter commented on our marketing spend value, and we didn't really understand why he bothered to comment on it.

    Arrgh, tacit knowledge. I wish you had pushed me on it. But you're right it does have to do with some 'on the fly' insights.

     

    I find myself a little confused as to your problem (as opposed to the team's problem). What are you really focusing on here? I think you need to be more explicit, more precise is describing 'thing' you are reflecting on. E.g., This central theme of this learning journal is how I do x. 

    This will help to focus your reflection and deepen your learning.