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All things must come to an end and finally this is the last journal entry that I will have to write up.  As mentioned at the beginning of the course in my first journal I mentioned that anything to do with self reflection was not on my list of fun things to do during the week, but with this course I have developed an understanding as to why reflection and reviewing the problems you faced alongside the solutions or hindsight explanations are useful for your learning, but also for your general development (Daudelin, 1996).  Last week my team achieved the goals we desired to achieve, but we had a decreased SHV and less cash, which placed us at a disadvantage.  This was further complicated by the fact that when logging into Mikes Bikes after the rollover we had been taken over by another company.  Our combination with both our child and parent companies allowed our three companies to have the largest market share, but individually we were not doing that great, which prompted us all to realise that a revolution had to be conducted in order for us to achieve the results we wanted for each other and ourselves and to hopefully dominate over our competition (Greiner, 1972).  This was a task in deed with our child company wanting us to sell them, whereas our parent company said that they wanted us because together we had the highest share value with our parent company.  Also, at the time our child company was producing a higher SHV, which made their request even less realistic then if they had asked us the same question last week.  Therefore, this week our problem as a team was whether our three teams would be able to work together to get the results we wanted without being accused of collusion, and lastly, my personal problem directly related to how would my decisions be impacted by this takeover and if I could trust our parent company.

It's a little ironic that my problem this week was whether or not to trust our parent takeover company when our child company had the same issues, but even through our clear transparency they still doubted our intentions.  Experiencing things from their point of view has made me understand their insecurities and doubts on our intentions with their company from this experience.  It marked an evolution in my thought pattern in regards to the potential growth that this opportunity offered our company and also the knowledge that my team could garner from this unification of our teams (Christensen, 2010).  Firstly, I had to overcome this problem by addressing my concerns with my team about the takeover and whether or not it could be beneficial for us.  At first we were hesitant to share any information or if we were even going to align with their suggestions to get the best results for our companies.  Though during the meeting they were being blatantly honest with us and in the end we realised that if would hurt us more if we were to deliberately ignore everything they were sharing with us.  Of course our team still maintained its autonomy so we could still take or ignore their suggestions, but overall what they were telling us made sense and made me realise that this takeover may not have been the worst thing that ever happened to my team.  This was further solidified when the rollover came by and our shareholder value and increase to make us no longer an underdog but a strong competitor within our industry.  This boosted my feeling of accomplishment when I mentioned last week that I felt like my lack of knowledge and expertise in my department had led my team to its lower shareholder value by not being able to meet its demand after our efforts to increase our presence and awareness.  This has allowed me to develop my sense of trust individually in our large developing revolution type machine, but also made me realise the benefits of being transparent to the degree that you help without making the other team get on the defence and possibly either ruin their own chances or the parents teams chances.  

As a team I mentioned that our problem was wondering if our child company wanted to work with our parent company, and if they didn't how were we has the middle man going to manage this.  There were a couple of tense moments, which were primarily fuelled from our child teams insecurities with their position in this developing machine.  Personally I can see where they are coming from where they were starting to make a comeback and we purchased them without any consultation and therefore, pretty much sweep the rug right out from under them.  In hindsight this could of been conducted in a manner which allowed the other team to consider our offer and to feel more secure in their position instead of a possible throw away or a way for us to simply take their money and dump them.  Therefore, this week we had to define our organisational structure and culture to include them and point our that our aim was not to hurt ourselves and if we were going to hurt them we would simply be sabotaging ourselves and now our parent company as well, which was clear to see not our aim for this assignment at any point (Christensen, 2010).  This allowed us to achieve not only our high results, but also high results for the other two teams as well, which has allowed us all to feel secure going into the final double rollover next week and to hopefully maintain our results right to the end.  

On a personal note away from this course I have found this simulation one of the most interesting papers from the issues and opportunities that are developed throughout this experience.  There are the highs and lows of working in a team and yes the environment within Mikes Bikes is artificial in every aspect, but I found that the communication and tough decisions that had to be made gave me an indication of what life will be like outside of university and this course.  I believe it is one course were instead of learning theoretical knowledge throughout the semester it has given me some applicable knowledge that can be placed directly into the workforce with a few changes.  This is a change in tune from a couple of weeks ago where just seeing the dog on Mikes Bikes would make me want to simply give up or walk away, but through that and my teams up and down with our results I think I have learnt some valuable life lessons from this experience.    

 

Daudelin, M. W. (1996). Learning from experience through reflectionOrganizational Dynamics, 24(3), 36–48

Christensen, C. M. (2010). How will you measure your life? Harvard Business Review, 88(7/8), 46-51.

Greiner, L. E. (1972). Evolution and revolution as organizations growHarvard Business Review, 50(4), 37--46.

3 Comments

  1. Hi, I think you definitely followed Daudelin's structure very well and quite in depth in the analysis and hypothesis stages, I would suggest that you do a proof read because I have managed to spot some minor errors here and there eg. ' we realised that if would hurt us..'. Overall, a really strong piece, all the best with your summative journal (smile) Hope this helps (smile)

  2. Hi Anna

    Your journal reflects that you have understood the theory specifically in regards to Greiner and your identification of the issue in autonomy and the subsequent application of the theory to guide your team through the revolutionary phase shows you actively experimenting with the advise given in the text you showed that you had moved on from the evolutionary period of direction and used that as your team moved forward benefiting from deeper understanding of the directive processes. I think you might be looking for a different word when you refer to your "child" company perhaps subsidiary would be a better word to describe your firms role in the simulation. Your recognition that hurting your parent company would in turn hurt your own company shows that you are engaging in the higher levels of Blooms taxonomy and you have identified what the real goal is, not to see your partner company fail but to grow in unison.

  3. Overall, you need to make sure that your focus is you ... this is especially true in the summative learning journal, It's not about what the team "learnt", it's about your learning and what you are doing differently.

    Ultimately your starting point to doing a great summative learning journal is to look across all your weekly learning journal's and say "What seems to be the reoccurring theme in those journals". Note I say theme, not themes. You really only need one ... you won't explicitly be penalized for doing more that one, but it is hard to get the depth and quality of thinking about 2 or 3 topics into the small number of words you have to play with.

    The ending point of your summative learning journal (in many ways) is what you are now trying to do differently (ideally beyond the course) to get some better outcome than before. Remember for me, learning is manifested through doing stuff ... until you try (or plan to try) to do something differently then I'm not convinced that learning has taken place.

    Connecting these two parts is the "why". Why do you believe that doing X will produce a better result. This step is not so strong in this learning journal, and could do with some expansion. When you think about your goals for this learning journal you'll probably see there are bits that don't contribute to those goals ... you want to make sure you don't have un-needed 'stuff' in your summative learning journal (most folk find they are short on space, or short on explaining their logic/providing examples/evidence).