Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Leadership is Listening

As usual, my cohorts and I walked to the VDub dining hall to eat breakfast. Perkins dormitory is a bit farther from the VDub, but our group does not mind walking much. After breakfast, NeMoW (my cohorts and I) with a couple girls from the Women and Leadership class, walked down to our classroom. Dean Almandrez bought us Dunkin' Donuts at breakfast.
For our pre-reflection, Dean Almandrez showed us a clip from the movie Sister Act, where the main character is directed into a leadership role that she is hesitant to be placed in. Her leadership style was listening to the individual needs inside the group. The importance was listening to each other to be a successful group. Soon, my class was split into five groups for a Brown University Scavenger Hunt. The rules were to stay as a group, stay hydrated by drinking water, and be back before 11:30 AM. In my group, was Stephanie, Theo, Sierra, and Serrita. Immediately, there was an emphasis in competing and winning without taking a step back and reassessing. Although we came in second to winning, I did not feel like we succeeded as a group, because the lack of communication and direction. Before we started, I took Dean Almandrez advice of staying hydrated throughout the day, but before I could refill my water bottle, my group ran ahead without reviewing our roles and what was written down on the sheet. It was frustrating convincing my group to listen to what I had to say, because naturally everyone was super competitive and had no time to talk about anything else. I was struggling to keep up with my group, as I did not feel well being dehydrated with no clear direction of our scavenger hunt. The few times I enjoyed the scavenger hunt was working together as a team by taking our group photo jumping in midair, communicating with open people on the sidewalks and on university campus.

Other than that, I did not enjoy most of the scavenger hunt, because we were not connected as a team. I tried to talk with my group about it, but there was a focus much on winning without realizing a deeper meaning to the scavenger hunt. There must be some other reason than enjoying ourselves on a scavenger hunt during class time. What I took out from this experience was to be more assertive and think outside the box. I was disappointed with our group leadership styles, because we learned to pit against each other without realizing the struggles of other people. Now I have experienced what it is feels like to be the person in a scavenger hunt, who is trying the best to contribute and keep up physically, but could not based on group organization. It was confusing at times, because a few people were ahead and expected us to follow without group affirmation. Although this experience was challenging and uncomfortable, I would try it over again to find flaws and learn more about each other.

After lunch, the Ivy league Connection cohorts and I, including one of our classmates did our practice presentations for tomorrow's actual presentation. There were many good questions and feedback to our mock presentations. I am working with two of my cohorts at my high school, Maria LIose and Cynthia Ramirez. I was the ninth person on the board list to go up and present. There was many feelings, of self- judgement in everyone. We all agreed we can do better in our presentations. I have a major problem public speaking and because I had the mindset I will do worse then my classmates I did. From lots of feedback, I know to use volume and energy to emphasize and use to my advantage. It is so difficult to realize the distracting actions we do, while presenting in front of our audiences. Most important to me for remembering to be confident and truly passionate, was to command space and represent the people who will be impacted by our Action Plan.

1 comment:

  1. Life will present situations when you will be in similiar situation, instead, look at the positives and what you can change to become a better team mate and how you can speak up or help to redirect. Remember to always be confident and believe in yourself because you have a lot to contribute. When you start looking at the negatives, you close the opportunities you can use to continue growing. When speaking in public, memorize your speech or identify key words that can keep you in track, this helps me to focus on what I want others to take from my presentation and mold it to your personality. The loudness will come out with your confidence :)