On Tuesday this week I joined the Interaction team with the ‘Collaborating in Teams’ module of a prestigious Graduate Development Programme. Over three days, through a mix of carefully crafted experiential activity and guided reflection, we explored ideas including behavioural flexibility, ‘virtual’ teams, and the factors influencing team effectiveness in modern business. We have guided delegates through a strengths-based approach, and looked at some practical ideas around recognizing team dynamics and collaborating successfully as a graduate in today’s workplace.
The cohort were lucky enough to be addressed by the CFO during a ‘formal’ dinner night. He encouraged them to take opportunities and to quickly ‘get familiar with the numbers’. At the end of a busy but thoroughly enjoyable few days the delegates spent some quality time committing to some pragmatic actions, with ongoing support in place from colleagues and business mentors.
Where I have seen this type of work failing to have the impact it should is when the learning is not delivered experientially so that learners only conceptually understand the issues at hand but can’t translate that into practice. There is also danger when someone develops a clearer understanding of their interpersonal impact but fails to recognise it as a preference rather than a rigid (often defensive) definition. By really challenging learners this week to stretch themselves in very specific ways, often to an uncomfortable degree but with appropriate support in place, we saw some genuinely transformational results, and had a great time in the process.
So that’s my first week done. I wonder what week 2 will bring…