In May of this year, I sat in the back of a large conference room in tears. After meeting and greeting all the new members of my class, and spending a few days getting to know them, the time had come to start forming teams. Everyone began grouping up, but there I sat at the back of the room alone. It was like one of those horrible experiences in grade school where two freshly appointed team captains begin selecting members for their teams and you begin to realize that you are going to be chosen last. It is a strange feeling of having no value.
On that day a lifetime ago, I dried my eyes and began looking around the room only to discover that there were a few others that had not found a group. There was Adam, the young man that had been so funny in some of the team exercises, Ferdinand, the guy from Houston that seemed quiet at first, but had such impressive things to share when he began talking, and Angela, one of the Taiwanese students that seemed shy, but was quick to laugh and thoughtful in what she had to say. When we all noticed each other sitting "ungrouped" around the room, we began making our way to a table together. A few weeks into the semester, we were assigned a late enrollee from the online group, Pedro, a guy living in Portugal with lots of interesting ideas. This was our team...the five of us put together as randomly as any group before us. Later, we became team "Innovation 1", the five of us and our wide range of backgrounds, our interesting mix of ages and experiences, and our quirky mix of personalities. We became a team.
Tonight, we learned that we tied for first place in the class business plan competition.
F I R S T P L A C E ! ! !
We are a team, in every sense of the word now. We are often like siblings, actually, picking and teasing, arguing and laughing, struggling to establish boundaries, covering for each other, sharing and hiding, and always, always, always working together in mutual respect and admiration as we conduct our business. I am as proud as an old mother hen tonight that I am a part, an integral part, of such an impressive team of winners.
This is my team, and together we are winners.
YIPPEE!!! I am flying high tonight!!!