This week for me was dominated by a new sense of belonging. My group has remained formal and professional throughout the simulation process so far and this week we received feedback from all the other members of the group which we entered and receive anonymously online. We planned to have a half way review of one another right from the get-go when we drew up our team contract on the first day of meeting. At first the benefits to me, were just that we would have a physical and formal paper trail just in case we had one slacker that we wanted to punish in the scoring process but it has turned out to be a real blessing for me. I was so sure that they would all marginalise me as being stupid or having no clue about Mikes Bikes (and that’s how I feel sometimes) but instead they were really insightful and kind. All of the comments suggested that I need not feel embarrassed and just to have a little confidence.
They are right, and yet I’m not sure where these insecurities have come from. Usually I am extraverted. Loud even. I searched through the readings a long while to find something that would help me to understand, let alone solve, my problem. None of the key messages really jumped out at me but Davies and Easterby-Smith (1984) mention numerous times that for learning to occur (my main objective in the course), where I can recognise and combat challenges, I have to be self-confident. The two elements required for development are confidence and freedom. I have freedom to change my job in response to what happens in the simulation, more so than in my real job. So what’s the problem? I’m far from stupid. Thinking back to week 3, that’s where it all started. I was intimidated by the other loud personalities of the group. I had never before experienced a team that didn’t need leadership and I decided then to respond by being a follower. But I’m doing something wrong. This week I plan to go back to week 3’s leadership readings and be the effective follower that I know I can be and that I need to be. For now, I have to fake it till I make it.
Davies, J., & Easterby-Smith, M. (1984). Learning and developing from managerial work experiences. Journal of Management Studies, 21(2), 169--182. doi:10.1111/j.1467-6486.1984.tb00230.x