The winning moment…What happened??
I was actually in Rotterdam, strolling around the city with friends during the ceremony, so I only managed to connect to the Zoom call for the winning teams’ announcement. I have to admit, after the 2nd and 3rd place announcement of winners, I told myself that it was over and we just hope that we are in the top-10. And then our team’s name and picture came up with the classic Queen melody “We are the Champions”! At this moment, I put myself off mute to say thank you to the rest of my team members. I tried to listen to the feedback for our performance but excitement got the best of me. Thankfully, another team member recorded this and shared it with the rest of us afterwards.
Fun fact: now that I look back, we used another Queen song – We Will Rock You – for our introduction video, so maybe this was a bit of a foresight.
Please share your secrets with us; how did you win this competition?
I don’t believe in secrets and I think it sounds a bit cliché, but it is all about having the right team. I was privileged to have been selected by my fellow team members as a team lead and I have to say, I couldn’t have asked for a better team, even though it took some effort to get there. One of the initial team members abandoned us halfway through the first deadline, but we were appointed another team member who caught up very quickly. Synergies between the rest of the team worked out for the best in the end.
The first step towards winning, is knowing the end goal: what to deliver and how you will be assessed. Showing progress in the deliverables throughout the day and presenting a cohesive and consistent narrative are key.
One more aspect that definitely helped us winning, is delegation. We made sure that everyone knew exactly what they had to do and when to deliver. This is something that definitely helped in reducing the amount of stress experienced by the team.
In addition, we put a lot of effort in showing how we work as a team; it sounds simple but it takes a considerable amount of effort to visualize something as intangible as communication, collaboration and commitment. It is all about the balance between addressing the business case and demonstrating the ways of working and copying with challenges.
Finally, this is meant to be fun! There is nothing to lose, only things to win, so possessing this attitude will change your perspective (and chances of achieving a better performance).
How do you see this win helping you professionally?
I believe this is a great test for everyone, as it is more than likely that at some point in your career, you will be put in the same virtual room with someone from the other end of the world and asked to deliver within a few hours or days. Moreover, meeting young professionals (and people in general of course) from different cultures is always insightful.
Ultimately, I personally have always been a fan of “outside the curriculum” activities i.e. anything that is carried out on the side of university of work related day-to-day activities.
There is added value for any potential employer and a great example of a holistic person that aspires to broaden his/her horizons.