Assembling the crew
Reflecting on the past journeys, the assembling of the different teams has always been an interesting process as the journey evolves. There is in a way a common evolution that unfolds every time.
It begins with the initial first reaction to each other as the team members meet each other for the first time. Then there is the slow process of building as a unit, finding cohesion and ultimately becoming as one, as a fully functional single-minded entity. This is the ultimate team, the perfection that we always strive for, where everyone knows where, what, how and why. The route to this, no matter where you find yourself, it always seems to evolve in a very similar route.
During the initial month we all seem to reflect on our own lives and experiences and bring this to the team effort, that’s where we are the most comfortable, its what we know. We are brought into a situation as individuals bound only by the journey that lies ahead. A period unfolds initially where we were not yet reliant on each other as a group.
This is the beginning of the growth where we are still disjointed as a team searching and finding the way forward with uncertainty.
I must say that there have been many examples in my life where bonding has occurred in a group amid threatening situations. Team bonding reflects how much we actually need each other when facing challenges and the unknown. The team dynamic becomes more important than our own individuality only when we begin to rely on each other and fully understand that we are better as a unit than we are as individuals. The acceleration of this growth occurs when we realise that if we pooled our resources as a group, we would be far more efficient and successful.
As the east coast becomes a distant memory and the mountainous tower up in front of us, taunting us with challenge after challenge, Beijing will also soon become a haze, a distant memory.
On and on we will run, in the wake of this, the team will bond as they solidify in the common goal to get us to the end, feed us, nourish us and hydrate us with the sweetness of the spring water. The terrain will get more and more rugged, and then it will give way into long stretches of rolling hills as the Mongolian plateau approaches.
It flows with undulating mountains hiding the vast Gobi Desert that takes on a shape of its own that is jagged, rough, hot and unrelenting. It is in these desolate life-threatening situations that the team becomes crucial and its in times like this that there must be total focus and cohesion within the team. This is where they will grow and flourish.