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This week has perhaps been one of the most stressful weeks in my university experience yet. The debate of whether to stay together as a group or be split apart finally ended on Wednesday morning with our first rollover to be held on Thursday (today). I find myself behind in behind in my three other subjects due to both the time and energy spent on this course and on MikesBikes. I realize I only have myself to blame but the repercussions of what seemed like a harmless act at the time, (placing ourselves in the same team) has been full of challenges. The results whilst favorable have left many other teams reporting they have no motivation to win, rather to beat us or even worse take us down.  But it makes me question whether this scrutiny is fair. When the class was offered who wanted to help form the teams, it was us who volunteered to do so. We all had the chance of doing this but only we volunteered. Until yesterday everybody in the team was too scared to spill strategy in the event that we would be separated. As I said, it has been stressful.

“When you have disciplined people you don’t need heirachy. When you have disciplined thought you don’t need bureaucracy. When you have disciplined action you don’t need need excessive controls. Whenyou combine a culture of discipline with an ethnic of entrepreneurship, you get the magical alchemy of great performance“ (Collins, 2005, p.p.141). A quote which so far has accurately described our team, we have all spent many hours, probably totaling days now on mikesbikes learning the effects of every variable, reading every manual out there, every tip sheet, talking to every personal possible to put ourselves ahead. We as a team have honestly worked very hard and our core goal of winning remains.

Collins(2005) has made me reflect on the process we went through for team formation and distributing of roles within the teams. This process was largely based on goal alignment and ideal job based on individual preference. Those who wanted to be CEO were generally made CEO but of the people put in power, do they have the ability and humility to be a leader?

The ability to control and the ability to lead are conflicting at their core. As seen from past experiences those who generally take charge are the outspoken ones, the people who have their own mission in mind, the extent to which they have humility I wouldn’t know. I in fact was one of these people, I snapped up the possibility of chosing teams as soon as it was provide. My resulting group is very top heavy but still determined. I have never really considered myself as someone of power nor a follower, and in all honesty haven’t given much thought to humility either. I find myself at conflict with the idea that personal ambition lies at odds with humility.

So it leaves me questioning, can our “good” company become a great one? I guess only the remanding rollovers will tell.



Collins, J. C. (2005). Level 5 leadership: the triumph of humility and fierce resolve. Harvard Business Review, 83(7/8), 136--146


  1. Please make sure your label your learning journal correctly. I did it for you this time.

  2. Hi Jessica,

    After reading your journal, I now know that you are part of the group that formed themselves after working together in choosing teams. I can understand the conflict on both sides, (your team and the rest of the class) and enjoyed reading your opinion on the issue. I can fully understand where you are coming from and can't say I wouldn't feel the same way, although I do think the complaint from the rest of the class was more to the extent of the extra gain your group received, just from the extra time you had together that allowed your group to start the first session of 'group time' making very real decisions and more productive action, while the rest of the class were still very much in the forming process and attempting to establish some group rapport etc. In saying that, disadvantages and advantages alike are always going occur in life, and whilst working in teams in our working lives it is never guaranteed to be fair. All's fair in love and war, and apparently management group work!

    I think you showed great critical thinking through the experience you have had over the last week, and reflected on it well whilst incorporating the theory, other than maybe proof reading your work (few grammatical mistakes i.e. the title) and explaining for example how this could be improved or from this what you learned that could allow you to do things differently?

    Other than that, I really enjoyed reading your learning journal!

    Good luck for the rest of the semester!



  3. I personally had zero problems with the allocation of the team members. As this is something that invariably will occur in real life situations. The desire to keep things fair is understandable in the overall context of education, but as a reflection of the 'real world' there was nothing inherently wrong with the decision taken as I feel I would've done something very similar if I were in a similar position.

    In terms of your reflection, it was a good application of the reading you have provided but it feels as thought it was tagged on, rather than the focal point of your reflection. This is not a problem in itself as many people have different methods of reflection but it's merely something I had noticed.

    Overall, enjoyable reading of high quality.

  4. Hi. Firstly, I want to apologize for just writing my feedback now. I made a terrible mistake and just realized now that we have assigned journals to give feedbacks too, I thought we choose who to give feedbacks to. (Stupid mistake, I know. (smile)) Anyway, on a more important note. Here's my feedback:

    I enjoyed reading your entry. I thought that it was thought-provoking and very interesting. I appreciate your honesty and your opinion about the issue of the team allocations. I understand now where you're coming from.

    Also, I like how you incorporated the issue/experience you had with Collins' reading which means that you know what you are talking about and understand it. Great structure as well and as mentioned, your entry is thought-provoking as you question certain aspects of the process and of the reading. Well done and keep up the good work. 

  5. Also want to apologise for the lateness of this review, but your experiences were enticing and have strong relevance to the barriers and negative experiences that can be assumed whilst in a team and the politics that follows. Although you have many factors that are not in your favour, it can be observed that your team has the potential to overcome these factors. I encourage you to focus on developing your reflective experiences into that of theories that can result in learning outcomes that could promote your experience during these team exercises. Also try to incorporate the readings of the week as the have valuable theories and concepts that could promote greater learning outcomes and could support your summative journal.