Sunday, November 2, 2014

3 BEST LESSONS YOU SHOULDN’T MISS WHILE GROUP WORK

#Celebrateblogging: THE LESSONS-4

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Once I mended my friction with that team member over some issue with previous communication between us, she gave me some valuable feedback on the chapter I wrote. I accepted them and made some alterations with the chapter. Those suggestions were crucial and reminded me of the great lesson that there is genius in every individual and that we must acknowledge them instead of ignoring their presence. Every living on non-living entity is placed there to direct us into the direction of Peak Consciousness. And all of them have a spirit compelling them each moment of their existence to follow the path of their interconnected destinies, serving and being served at the same time.

From that point onwards, I decided to consider various suggestions that came from others in the team on how to modify chapters. Although some suggestions still appeared subjective, I benefited immensely from their opinions on a different level. It’s very important, as a writer, to know what other people think when they read a story. These inputs will help us enormously to write better for a specific category of people.

I realized one more thing: the number of page views received for the first chapter that I wrote without posting it to the Facebook group, unlike what others did, was way more than the ones I received for the later chapters I wrote in the same series.

I posted two more chapters. The page views I received for the two of those chapters combined wasn’t even close to what I had received for the first chapter.

This meant that my suggestion to post the chapters we write directly to our blogs did work tremendously in improvising blog-statistics. However, it remains an unacknowledged reality still among my team members at Kalakar Colony.

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None of them could accept the thought that posting directly to our blogs, instead of wearing ourselves off in a secret Facebook Group discussion, could bring us all fascinating results. No one accepted the suggestion to utilize the flexibility of blogging to edit and rewrite. Until the end of the #CelebrateBlogging contest, in which everyone is a winner, Kalakar Colony edited and reworked their chapters in their Facebook Group and kept their blog ‘neat’ and ‘quiet’ losing out on those hundreds of page views they could have amassed otherwise. The lesson in this experience? We must listen hard when there is too much noise.   

Even though at times, I felt I might not be able to feel comfortable with several decisions my team members made I held on to the image of a student in my mind. I was a student of life. Learning and educating my consciousness on the nuances and ramifications of human behavior.

I learned my lessons in this short-term crash course in ‘group effort’, for sure. In addition, I was able to guide my own team while in the time of a severe dispute between the Point of Contact and one of the team members. This I consider as one of the tests I had to go through if I needed a passing grade to be promoted to the next level of personal growth.

The dispute was about how one of the team members felt she was mistreated by the Point of Contact. The team member shared her annoyance with the team’s Point of Contact. However, their communications at one point lost the transparency they should have kept being the participants of a ‘team effort’. One of them excluded the other from a group mail sent to the whole team. I sensed a very violent outcome for such a behavior.

Something must be done to mend things, I thought. That was the right time for me to interfere to let the team members know that there was yet another way things could be settled—the way of friendship, of honor, of love. Although some members still felt uncomfortable with this new way of looking at life’s conflicts, our team, Kalakar Colony wounded up the contest in peace and relative harmony.

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By the way, the Facebook Group still functions and I would surely post the link to this article on the status bar there, as I have been doing for the previous part of this series. There is one feeling that all of us team members experienced while in the contest and perhaps, even now—fulfillment. Every one of us is born with the ability to create. But to create a specific and meaningful work is immensely fulfilling and truly Divine. That is where the reward for the Kalakar (artist) comes from.  

Each of us in group Kalakar Colony, feel especially thankful to Blogadda.com for providing this opportunity to strive toward an artistic goal, together, with all these wonderful, gifted and unique individuals. Although in this matter I haven’t communicated with any of my team members, I am sure they all feel the same.       

#CelebrateBlogging was a group effort. When one considers the success of this group work, one must shift one’s glance at the individuals who worked together in this project. The ultimate gain apparently, doesn’t seem to be for the group. It seems, the group work ultimately caused benefit to the individuals who took part in this contest. In my case, it helped me learn some invaluable lessons in my life.

Firstly, it was the communication problem. I learnt that when we exchange emails, try not to be too economic. Share every aspect of one’s comments and suggestions eliminating the maximum possibilities for any future conflict and hurt. Always illustrate your point with examples. Never consider that the person you are communicating with for the first time (and that too through email) will understand your casual talk. Short statements are always prone to being misunderstood as curt or arrogant statements. Never reply with a short statement in Simple Present Tense or in a fragment, with a person you write for the first time. Especially, if the language of your communication is second-language to the other person.

When I look back at the “error” that occurred while exchanging one of the group mails, I realize, I would have done it without causing future friction. In one of the group mails, we discussed a title for the team. One of the team member’s suggestions was about to be accepted when I felt that it wasn’t a very impressive title for a group. So I interfered and said that the title suggested sounds a bit amateurish.

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Little did I know that this comment would spark an inner fury within the team and also in the mind of the other person involved. Later, when I came to know about the hurt the person felt in relation to my comment, I immediately apologized and sincerely tried to mend things up. However, had I avoided using short statements and casual talk I would have prevented this personal conflict. The reason why we use casual talk when we meet someone new is in the hope that it would make the other person feel comfortable instantly. This might appear very helpful and reliable in one-on-ones. However, in mails and other forms of written communication, short sentences and lack of explanations can cause unprecedented damage.

My second realization was never to undermine anyone around us. There is a reason why we are among the specific people and things that are around us right now. This mystery could be explained in two possible ways. Either some Higher Power places us among them or these living and non-living entities and human beings are surrounding us because they were ordained to do so. In both cases, one definite purpose stands out. The reason and meaning in the coming together of those living and non-living entities around us, the reason for being surrounded by the people who are around us now, is simply this—they are there to help us achieve what I call Peak Consciousness.

I also learnt through this experience that my growth as a writer lies beyond my ego. I overcame the prodding of my ego to be the one and only decision maker in my writing life. I went beyond my usual editing process, in which I go through the three of my familiar editors. Throughout #Celebrateblogging, in the process of opening myself up to new possibilities, I learnt lessons I would never have learnt otherwise. The suggestions helped me to improvise the story, to present it, as ‘they want it’. In addition, it helped me to practice the invaluable lesson of creative tolerance by being open to suggestions of relatively unfamiliar people.  
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The name we gave our mystery story was “The Circle of Deceit”. Contrary to what the name indicates, the game of blogs did not betray us. There were lessons, but of an intimately personal kind that I learnt.   

Thirdly, I learnt that everything we do in order to restore peace and harmony among others would become a spiritual act. When I interfered into the personal conflict between two of my team members, I was actually undertaking a spiritual task, dependent on my limited understanding of how to use love, respect, and honor to bring about great change.
__This Concludes Here__

Thank you for taking this course through my personal life.


Chapter-1                                  Chapter-2                                                          Chapter-3
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