Standards - Interpersonal


Image of FAA LogoInteract effectively with others as peers, subordinates and leaders to accomplish goals.

Project Type: Group
Class: ED 795A - Seminar
Artifacts: Team Client Contract (available upon request)

 

Context

For my ED 795A group client project, which consisted of myself as team leader along with Jeanine Thomas and Jess Sanders, we were tasked with assisting the Federal Aviation Administration’s Southern California TRACON air traffic control facility with revamping their training program. This project also involved two other teams from the class with whom we needed to communicate with regularly to get the project scope defined and develop the client contract.

The Standard Connection

Interact effectively with others as peers, subordinates and leaders to accomplish goals.

The amount of interaction needed not only between the members of my own team, but with two other entire teams and the client, was overwhelming at the start of this project. We had a very large project scope to begin with, and with so many people involved there were more than a few cooks in the kitchen. In order to begin efficiently mapping out the path of the project, we decided that only the team leaders would meet and collaborate to make initial project decisions, then relay the developments to their respective teams. The leaders of the other two teams and myself met quite frequently over the course of a few days, utilizing the Wimba classroom and Google docs, in which we were able to successfully narrow down the project scope to a manageable chunk. After communicating this scope to our teams and our professors, we got the green light for the project and began piecing together the client contract. We followed a similar pattern in which only the team leads worked on creating the contract then opened it up to suggestions from the other members before submitting to the client.

Challenges and Opportunities

As I mentioned previously, the enormous size of the project AND amount of people involved in it made the work very challenging. Pretty soon we were realizing that with so many individuals nothing would ever get done quickly. This was the opportunity the challenge afforded us: to be able to organize and define team member roles in order to get the project moving efficiently. Even still, our project moved slower than most because of the number of teams involved, but I think it would have moved slower still had we not organized ourselves as we did.

Personal and Professional Growth

I have not had many experiences in which I was a “team lead” for a class project and therefore could not say that my leadership skills were a polished set. After my experience in this project, however, I feel that I do have what it takes to take the role of a leader if it was required of me. I made decisions, collaborated well across teams and within my own team, and delegated work as necessary in order to get the job done. I know I will look back on this challenging project as a learning experience in leadership.