I have attended Junior Achievement Business Week for the past three years. The program always leads to new learning experiences and open doors. The people at Junior Achievement really see each student for who they can be and see the up-most potential in each individual. Most years students leave JA Business Week discussing how much they loved the etiquette dinner, or speed dating style interviews, mock tails with prominent Denver business people or the Entrepreneurial Summit Lunch. Now the past two years I have walked away the same way, usually favoring the mock tail networking. This year what made business week special for me was very different from in the past.
This year at JA Business Week I was fortunate enough to have a really excellent team of people standing beside me in my team. This team started off quiet and we had a difficult time breaking the ice. One day we decided to lunch together and work to establish relationships with one another. When we arrived in the cafeteria and piled our plates with food we headed outside to enjoy a meal and what we expected to be another “boring team building exercise.” What was facilitated that afternoon was much more than that. Our company ended up talking in the cafeteria well into our next session of company meetings. As a group we each shared two personal strengths and two personal weaknesses. Doing this helped many team members to open up and to share a piece of themselves with the team (I mean what makes us feel more vulnerable than exposing weakness?) As each individual shared a these things other team members would lift them up with other strengths they had witnessed.
By the end of the lunch period we had done much more than break the ice within our team, we had begun to share our hearts with one another and open up on a beautiful relational level. This exercise helped to mold Company X as a team for the remainder of the week. What a powerful experience.
-Bailey Gent, JA Business Week Student