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Leading by Following: Business Students Learn the True Spirit of Teamwork

 Contributed by Kristy Lam (Global Business Studies, Year 1)
Team-working skills cannot be acquired through textbooks or theories alone, but are gained through interacting and collaborating with individuals from different backgrounds. In today’s business environment, effective teamwork and collaboration are crucial to a company’s growth and success. In order to help nurture the leadership qualities and soft skills, students from the Global Business Studies and International Business and Chinese Enterprise programmes participated in the two-day Team Effectiveness Workshop held on November 3 and 4, 2018.
During the workshop, there were various team-building activities, including remaking a toy model based on verbal description, constructing a functioning launcher for water balloons, and a blindfolded night walk. From my observations during the activities, it was intriguing to realise how individuals would naturally take up roles depending on where their strengths lie.
My favourite activity was the blindfolded night walk, with one person leading the blindfolded group around the campsite, which put mutual trust and communication skills among group members to the test. Through this activity, I realised that the team did not merely rely on the leader to overcome obstacles, but also on the members to help warn each other the next hindrance, as it was often difficult for the leader to take care of members at the back. Moreover, this activity also emphasised the importance of empathy in leadership. Before giving out instructions, the team leader must think from the perspective of the blindfolded members and understand their fear as they were unable to see their surroundings.

My biggest takeaways from this workshop were trying out different roles in a team and learning to collaborate effectively with others in various situations.