By: Ria Jayaram, Vishnu Panganamamula, Tiffany Too, Doris Wu
Our world houses an undoubtedly competitive business scene. And, through the rapid process of globalization, the professional world is becoming smaller than ever. So, it is paramount that diversity claims a seat in every room. Only if we all embrace one another for our differences can we truly produce quality work. Throughout our Illuminate College journey, our group made it a point to use these different insights and skills to our advantage. This allowed us to develop innovative solutions which stood out from the crowd. When varying opinions arose, we also ensured we openly analyzed each to arrive at the best possible result. The entire process proved that to achieve our dreams, we must first achieve diversity.
While working together as a team for the Illuminate case competition, the emphasis on a diverse community really sparked our solutions. Since our team consists of individuals from different cultural backgrounds, schools, areas of focus in post-secondary school, and different hobbies, we were able to generate creative solutions. Throughout the competition, diversity continued to be our competitive advantage because we were able to see the case study through different lenses of thought. We were essentially able to gain insights from a scientific, engineering, and business perspective. Ultimately, diversity helped with leadership as well because, through our diverse specializations in education, we were able to help each other thrive and learn about different streams of learning as well. For example, Ria as well as myself has taken a creative advertising class in high school which incorporated psychology and marketing for companies. This was very helpful because they were able to view the case study through the perspective of mental health and how clients would think. Furthermore, Doris and Vishnu were able to apply their background in business which hence, makes our solutions much stronger.
2. Methods of Brainstorming
As a team, when working on each case in Module 2, we wrote whatever came to mind about how to solve the problems in each of the scenarios that were given. From that point, we analyzed which solution would work best for the situation. The brainstorming sessions allowed each of our group members to solve problems together and come up with creative and unique solutions. Everytime we had a discussion on the scenario we were facing, all of us came to a common solution that was efficient and was ideal. Each group member used a variety of methods that helped to arrive at a resolution that would be perfect for the roleplay scene. For example, we organized each scenario into three parts; a synopsis of the problem, finding the root of the problem, and creating a solution to the problem. This approach allowed all of us to participate and play a role in coming up with a solution. We were able to accomplish this as a team due to encouraging each other and each of the group members actively participating and bringing their solutions and creative ideas to the table.
A huge takeaway from this experience was how pivotal a professional, respectful team dynamic is. As mentioned before, our group was diverse, and each member had their own unique experiences and perspectives. However, we all exhibited kindness and kept an open mind. We each avidly contributed ideas while also being sure to thoughtfully listen to other ones. And, when any disagreements occurred, we maintained an objective mindset. Oftentimes, the largest pitfall professionals face in the business environment is the influx of emotions that may stem from such disagreements. However, we kept our focus on the task at hand, which actually turned several of these disagreements into benefits. It enabled us to weigh the pros and cons of varying ideas, culminating in the best aspects of each into our final product. We strongly believe this lesson is evident in the collaborative work we brought to the table at Illuminate College. Furthermore, our team really took the time to get to know each other and understand each other as friends, and co-workers because we believe that building strong relationships help with improving teamwork and collaboration. By developing a strong relationship with each other, the drive to succeed really motivated us all to work hard and stay committed to our work.
Looking back at the journey at Illuminate College, it strengthened our skill sets and learned new skills along the way. We made new friends, got to know each other better, and learned to collaborate with each other while working on each consulting case. To make each task a success, each group member contributes to group work with their talents and abilities and offers a helping hand to one another. We were all really proud of our work and efforts. Our group was like a talented, winning team in a major sports tournament, winning against every bit of adversity that came our way. Ultimately, this experience was a great opportunity for us to grow and work as a team.