Johan Naude, Coaching Talent Manager for CCL in Greensboro, visited SOAR this morning. Today's topic was diversity - appreciating and respecting various perspectives contributing to the success of a team. In the first class activity, Johan instructed students to find objects from A to Z in the science room. Moving slowly during this 8 AM session, students gradually warmed up towards zipping around the room searching for creative answers to Johan's challenge. After piling the A-Z objects on a desk, students noted that the activity resulted in diverse solutions to the question - i.e. renaming objects to fit the letter and working together to come up with answers.
What does it mean to be different? Johan noted that when one identifies with a group, one often gravitates those with similar opinions. He compared working with a homogenous group to the advantages of working with a heterogenous team.
Johan then asked, "Are intentions observed by others - or behaviors?" Students filled out the MBTI last week, with the results serving as the basis for discussion of intentions and behaviors. Johan advised the students to be intential (using kavannah) in their choices of behavior. "The more you understand who you are," he said, "the more likely you are to change your behavior to achieve the desired result."
In a second activity, students were divided into two groups based on their MBTI results. Each group received a bag of M&Ms with instructions to build a house. The two houses were quite different (see the pictures), and students spent some time reflecting on the differences between them. The "judging preference" table took an organized approach to building their house, dividing jobs between them. The "perceiving preference" group took a more free flowing approach and quickly built their house, comfortably adding additional pieces. All of the students agreed that bringing aspects of the two approaches into a single project might bring about the best result.