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In this journal I will focus upon reflecting on how success and the future of success can wildly impact team discussions

Articulation of problem lies in discussion of big steps forward. As well are aware in business, rewards requires risk. This week we discussed about moving forward, in an effort to discuss securing our top spot, we explored and eventually moved forward with procuring the E.N.T.E.R.T.A.I.N. team. While this was a mutual consensus within the team, it was a rocky journey getting to where we are now. Today I'm going to go in detail on how team discussions are difficult and what can be learnt from problematic discussions. I found that one particular teammate was often using their loud voice, over talking others, and interrupting others discussion to chime in and move the conversation away.  They often brought topics back that we had already discussed, with often ignoring details I had already spoke about. I found it quite difficult to get my point across to the team, eventually resorting to coming in confident and a firm tone of voice in order to gain control of the conversation when I wished to speak. 


Under a further analysis, I feel as if that the problem does not lie entirely within the team member himself, in that I myself can get frustrated and impatient at times, and that I should be proactively contributing towards the team discussion, rather than negatively weighting on holding grudges against other. While this maintains a positive attitude, the saying goes "Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me." I can forgive the team member, but must make a conscious effort to control and maintain an effective conversation within the team, where I can freely speak and contribute to the team discussion without fault. This particular team member was in and out of the discussion, and often would blurt out his mind saying "Oh have we done XXX" loudly, as we were either discussing it then or had been and had that conversation, so I just let it go.  Moving forward, I feel as if doing nothing about the problem lies within the problem itself - I have not done anything proactively about this to confront the teammate, rather let my frustrations compound and find a way around the problem, instead of approaching and dealing with it.


It is important to take into consideration that team dynamics will be up and down, and that nothing can ever be perfect - You're bound to hit a speed bump. Team dynamics will play into consideration - especially with big decisions to talk about. During the earlier part of the course, we felt as if it was luck at times that made us successful.  Much like Race Wars from Fast and Furious - we know now it's not luck that factors into MikesBikes. With big decisions such as buying a team, they carry a huge weighting into how our firm will perform in the next coming financial years, so it is prevalent we have an in depth discussion about that, even if we don't agree with each other. 


Before action is made, it is clear that I must approach this situation with a relative theory so I can further develop this into a working relationship, as while this may seem like a trivial issue, we are in week 9 with lots at stake. Going back to earlier in the semester, trivial decisions such as these require a certain way of approach. Buchanan and O'Connell (2006) explore the reality of decision making, both with and without team weighting. One quote that stuck was "few decision makers ignore good information when they get it." (Buchanan & O'Connell, 2006, p.41) - Indicating that while my team can make good decisions, ignorance of what they have to say may lead my down the same path that is frustrating me. 

Furthermore, this came down to being a gut decision within our team. Evidence is usually for past decisions - no team we could find was ever in our exact position. Without evidence to rely on, our team found our guts to rely on (Not saying this was a bad thing). However in relation to gut decisions, " strategic thinking cries out for creativity and synthesis and thus is better suited to intuition than to analysis." (Buchanan & O'Connell, 2006, p.40).  


Having keeping these wise words to heart, moving forward it is the key takeaway that I should use this to my advantage through my team members, instead of getting frustrated by the shortcomings. I will endeavour to focus upon relying and using gut experience within decision making for the team members to provide their opinions, facts, and contributions to our decisions, as they are more than welcome. Relating back to the issue first discussed, I will focus upon changing their gut instinct and intuition rather than focus on the problem of the subjective team dynamics that are over exaggerated issues that are easily let go and quelled, as this was the only big decision. Remember, I work WITH the team, rather than against the team. 


References:

Daudelin, M. W. (1996). Learning from experience through reflection. Organizational Dynamics, 24(3), 36-48

Buchanan, Leigh, & O’Connell, A. (2006). A brief history of decision making. Harvard Business Review, 84(1), 32–41. Retrieved from http://ezproxy.auckland.ac.nz/login?url=http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=buh&AN=19256537&site=ehost-live&scope=site



3 Comments

  1. Hi Thomas, 

    This was a very insightful reflection into the dynamics of your team. It goes to show that although some teams may be successful, they may have somewhat toxic traits within the group. 

    I think your problem this week would have related well with the Katzenbach's reading, Why Teams Matter (1992). It differentiates the difference between a group and a team, and your company seems to be working as a group at the moment. Team work has many challenges, but the ability to talk through and come to a compromise is what defines the team atmosphere. 

    You could have improved your reflection more with the application of more relevant theories of which could have included the art of questioning both each other and yourself to allow more ease in problem solving. Your reflective journal is also mainly critical on others rather than also yourself and how you can change some things about how you work in a group. 

    All in all, great start and good luck!

    1. Hey there Krystal,

      This is really good feedback, with a good recommendation, thank you!

      I appreciate the feedback (smile) 




  2. One of the hardest things in groups is to convince others. It is a tough task as some members can be rigid and have their own opinion, and you will have to come up with a alternative plan, or a plan that can include both ideas, despite that you think that there are flaws in their plan, you know that things will never be perfect in the way you want. This is a time where you can test your negotiation skills like integrative bargaining to create a win-win strategy.