This week caused two polar opposite reactions in me in terms of my feelings towards MGMT 300.
Firstly, I became almost embarrassingly excited to be selected and put into teams. During my time studying psychology I'd learnt rather a lot about team dynamics, and it would be safe to say I would enjoy being in a team solely to analyse how they work. All the interesting concepts like groupthink, group polarisation, and leadership emerge and bring out both the best and worst in people. After reading Oakley et al.'s (2004) guide to teams I added a fully-fledged profile of a couch potato and a hitchhiker to my analytical mind, and was eager to see them in play. Though perhaps not in my own team. Character profiles aside, the section that struck me as most interesting and relevant in Oakley et al.’s (2004) reading was section C, 'dealing with problem team members'. Disliking confrontation as I do, it was relieving to see there were other less direct ways of dealing with difficult behaviour, and ways to prevent it - like team contracts. Which I found to be useful information when I we were eventually organised into teams and I was revealed to be in charge of HR.
In comparison, my small fondness for teams was outweighed by my ever-developing dislike for MikesBikes. In fact I not only disliked MikesBikes, I loathed it. If that little dog analysed my company one more time while riding its stupid little bike down a stupid little hill I was going to through my laptop out the window. I read the reports, I read the advisor's suggestions, I watched demonstration videos and tips online, yet still I couldn't get my share price to that illusive $25 by Tuesday. This feeling was shared by many people I talked to, and it was only after I received pointers from a friend who had a miracle breakthrough at the last minute that I managed to (slowly) understand it. These feelings coloured my view as I read Katzenbach and Smith’s (1992) article, though I have to admit I had calmed down by the time I got to the more encouraging story of the 'Connectors' at Motorola, which softened me a little. I resigned myself to the age old notion that if I kept trying, and kept up that strong performance ethic which Katzenbach and Smith (1992) attributed to Motorola's success, then maybe I could endure MikesBikes, at least for a semester.
Though I swear I will NEVER own a bike store.