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After last time’s roll over, having dropped our SHV by a great deal, this week’s results aren’t looking too bad. We are actually doing “good” according to the dog in the top left corner of the MikesBikes Multiplayer window. My team has truly done a lot of work and put a lot of thought into this task, which I am very pleased about. I am absolutely amazed with how quickly this semester has gone- probably the shortest semester I have ever lived through. Leading up to the end of another year makes me very nervous. If all goes well, I will be completing my study at this university next year and head off to work in the big, bad, business world. A number of concerns flip through my head as I try and come to grips with this. What will my first job out of university be like? Will I be good at it? Will I be happy? What’s even more worrying is that these questions will be left unanswered until then.

These concerns and questions are exactly like the ones that Christensen (2010) received from his students. In his article, he wrote about the few guidelines and advice that he offered to them through his own explicit view and experiences. Two of his guidelines resonated with me the most. Firstly, there is the allocation of resources that Christensen (2010) explains in detail. The scholar claims that the way in which you allocate your essential resources in life, such as time, energy, and skill, is what forms your life’s strategy. I suppose the same can be said in business- allocation of resources in your work is what shapes your business strategy. How well you allocate, in any aspect, is what determines how effective your strategy is. The scholar continues to state that inappropriately investing your resources can lead to bad outcomes. While this sounds like general knowledge, it’s easier said to efficiently use your resources than done, especially in a business. In our business-like environment for MikesBikes, a couple of weeks back, we made a slight miscalculation in a modification and our SHV dropped, consequently. Where there are humans, there are errors, and these resources can very well be in correctly invested in business.

Secondly, Christensen (2010) acknowledged what he refers to as the “marginal costs mistake”. From his own experience, he found that taking a risk and trying something just the once leads to unwanted outcomes. This scholar believes that these end results are regrettable and that a line has to be drawn at some point to separate us from what’s risky and what’s not. Here is where I disagree due to my own experience with MikesBikes. Within one of the first couple of weeks of this simulation my team and I decided to take a risk with one of our products and began increasing and decreasing certain figures. We thought our SHV wasn’t looking its best and believed that a different approach is what we needed to take and after submitting it for that week’s rollover, our SHV -didn’t come out on top, of course, however- came out higher than what we had predicted if we had taken the other route.

Seeing as there is some disagreement with this scholar that has lived through a world of experiences and has spent a fair amount of time in the business world, I have learnt that the lives of others cannot be scrutinised when you have a vision or goal of your own to achieve through your own methods. Whether I am satisfied with my future work, or good at it, knowing where to allocate my resources and knowing when to draw a safety line, is unknown for the meantime but the answers will come. They will come through my own experiences, and this course has already started me off with a great business-like experience that I will take away with me to my time in the real working world.

References

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

2 Comments

  1. Hi Reem

    It is good to see that you have appeared to find it easier to relate this week's reading to your own experiences. It definitely shows that you have learnt more from it as you have been able to apply it to your own experiences. You have attempted to reach the evaluation stage of Bloom's taxonomy with your critique of Christensen's "marginal cost mistake" but I feel as if you have misinterpreted the example. The way I interpreted the paragraph was that it was more about integrity and staying true to yourself than it was about taking risks. It is unreasonable to apply this example to Mike's Bikes when the context of the example was answering the question of "How do I stay out of jail?". The "how do I stay out of question" related to Christensen's long term strategy for his life. Surely the long term strategy for your team in Mike's Bikes  was along the lines of making a profit/being a good investment for your shareholders. Your "risk" was for the purpose of benefiting your long term strategy, if you had failed you would have (hopefully) tried to make it work a second time. Christensen specifically referred to infidelity and dishonesty, both of which were not part of his long term strategy for happiness. These show how the example was about right and wrong in terms of following your long term strategy. Although your investment might have been a risk, it was still for the best.

    Finally, I was unsure what you really meant with your final paragraph. When writing your summative learning journal, you should be a lot more explicit with your conclusions.

    Best of luck for the final two rollovers (smile)

  2. Hi Reem,

    This is definitely my favourite learning journal of yours, it was amazing!  You weaved Christensen's reading into your own experience with such ease, making your journal flow well and your points connect clearly.  I feel like you have really come to grips with this style of reflective writing and will produce a fantastic summative learning journal.  It was especially good to see some disagreement with the author, it shows an ability to think for yourself and offer meaningful critique.

    Contrary to what was said above, I believe your last paragraph does make sense and is accurately summative.  However I acknowledge that perhaps and actionable takeaway could have been good to add, e.g. "when I leave university I intend to..." "From now on I will not scrutinise others but...".  Though overall the journal was very well done and I can find nothing else to pick at.

    All the best for your summative journal and your final rollovers (smile)