Africa Blog #6

We have an Africa meeting tomorrow and this is a biggie. It’s our final group meeting and will provide a lot of the nitty gritty details about our trip. Unfortunately It’s supposedly a “team building” exercise as well. And honestly, I think “team building” is a joke.

Now, you’re probably thinking I’m just not a “team player”, but that’s not it. The fact is, I’ve been though many team building exercises and they simply do not work. What happens is that people will adapt for the exercise so they don’t look bad and then they go back to being themselves as soon as the class is over. You just can’t force people to feel a certain way on cue. Teams are built by starting with strong leadership and growing the team over time. You just can’t build a solid team in a few hours by doing lame “role-playing” exercises or “trust falls”.

The only team building exercise I ever enjoyed was one I did when I worked at FMC corp. What we did was take a long psychological test, and then interview with a psychologist. Out of this we got a complete report on what kind of personality each of us possessed. We also got a summary that we could share with the group. The rest of the seminar was spent learning how to understand and work with people who posses the different personality types. So it was just really cool because you start to understand why people behave the way they do and you learn to deal with them THE WAY THEY ARE, rather than try and force people to act against their nature. Very informative.

But anyway, it really doesn’t matter because honestly, I think we have a solid group of people with their hearts in the right place and I don’t think there’s anyone on the team I can’t beat into submission…. um, I mean, totally get along with. LOL. Just playing. Seriously, I think we’re going to do just fine.

Ok so…. I ran 21 miles this week! We started a Holiday Fit Club at work to help all of us desk jockeys stay fit through the holidays. I think I’m off to a good start. And this is really perfect timing. I want to be as fit as possible when we go to the Big A, so this little competition couldn’t have come at a better time. I also have been cooking nothing but vegetarian dishes this week and plan to continue that through January. This is partly to try and shave 5 pounds off that’s still holding onto me from last Christmas, but also to just try and get more in “Africa mode”. The last thing I want is to be in Africa having pepperoni pizza withdrawals with the closest Domino’s being 9000 miles away!

Another thing I think is great timing is Michelle’s trip she’s on right now. This is the longest time I’ve been alone in nearly 10 years, so this is a great little exercise. I never cease to be amazed at how God will time things just perfectly in order to prepare us for what’s ahead.

Have a great Friday!