…collaborate means to labor as an associate of another, to co-labor with one another to compose a jointly accredited work (Kane & Harms, 2005).
This has not been my first time to collaborate in the academic setting, neither in more graduate work nor undergrad. This particular project with the case studies did, however, prove itself to be one of the most challenging works of collaboration I have encountered. One major difference I have found throughout my graduate studies as compared to my time in undergraduate school is everyone is more engaged in other activities. Collaborating in undergraduate school was easy, because no one had a career and very few had families, so getting together to put together a case study or presentation was a lot less stressful. In addition, up until this point in my graduate studies work, I have only primarily worked with other LTEC students which made it relatively easy to make decisions as we all come from a similar background or at least have a similar heading. These two issues combined, busy schedules and differing of backgrounds, made this particular case study preparation and little more difficult than anticipated.
When working on our case study there were a few things that did work out to be advantageous. We were all on a collaborative Google Doc that was accessible 24/7 that made it easy for everyone to put insight into the case. The Google Doc was also created immediately after the assignment was given so we were able to begin work right away. Secondly, our team was exceedingly good at responding to email in a timely fashion. This was a help in contributing to our team’s success as it made it easy to stay and keep in touch. However, there were a few factors that still need to be worked out to solidifying the functionality of our team. Firstly, we did not agree on any particular strategy or group member roles from the beginning. We instead dug right into putting research. It was not entirely talked about who was in charge of what research portion or the means in which the project was going to unfold. This lead to a few disagreements later the process. In conjunction, since we did not assign roles ahead of time we did have misproportioned parts to the whole from particular members. This led to hurt feelings and loss of trust within the team.
When reviewing Dr. Kimura’s ways to contribute to your team’s success there are by far some on the list that we as a team need to work on. Besides the aforementioned, we as a team also need to work on encouraging and supporting each other. So often we as people as so focused on our agendas and ideas that we forget that we are not in these projects alone. We need to remember that everyone has their own opinions and everyone should find a way to accommodate different viewpoints and styles.