Blogpost #4: “Patient Zero” Retrospect

In today’s simulation with the fictional virus, the decision I struggled most with was the decision to allow the invasive software to run without the general public’s knowledge. Though I’m generally pretty freaked out about personalized ads and the matter of cybersecurity in real life, I rationalized the decision to run the software and restrict it only to the public health officials by telling myself that the opinion of the public is not as important as the preservation of lives. The software would save more lives at the trust of the public’s expense, and so I pushed to invade the privacy.

I enjoyed and had a lot of fun with the team dynamics during the simulation! When we had a conflict, the different sides would explain their position and we would propose a compromise that could be reached. We ended up having only a few seconds to make the actual decision by this point, so we would also simply take a majority vote if we ran out of time. From my perspective, I thought the plan worked well, though that could be because I was with the majority on all the decisions, and we ended up choosing whatever I originally wanted to do. I spoke a lot through my reasoning in the group, and I feel like I probably should’ve asked others in the group what they were thinking instead of waiting for them to volunteer the information. I know that I’d be a bit hesitant to share my idea if it went against what everyone talking was thinking.

Adaptive leadership is a style used by leaders when they have to be flexible, such as making decisions that they usually would not due to unforeseen circumstances. From what limited experience I have, it’s hard to tell whether the challenges I faced when making decisions were me going against my leadership methods, or simply me developing my priorities in leadership and cementing my leadership boundaries. Despite my confusion, I believe this style is incredibly important, since flexibility is always a great way to work through tough situations that would require different lenses to fully grasp the various ways to tackle problems.

Within the simulation, I mostly resonated with the discussion of how we would proceed within the group. I was able to identify my reaction to being told ideas opposite to my own, and it was definitely challenging when trying to let someone down gently when one of the paths is simply not what the majority of the group thought was best. I did not have much practice in it, and my position being backed up strongly by others in the group was also very interesting. As mentioned before, if I was in the minority I’m not exactly sure how I would’ve worked with the group, either being silent or explaining my thoughts and attempting to reach a compromise. I’m very interested in the different ways I work through leadership in these precarious settings, and also the idea of reasonable people reasonably disagreeing is a concept I would like to explore more in simulations, as I’m absolutely certain it’ll occur in real situations as well.

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