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Old 03-07-2012, 02:11 PM   #21
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I was very lucky to be in a one deep position with a boss who had no understanding of the software I worked on. The computer system was the world's first multiprocessor computer designed and built in the early 70s by IBM, Unisys, and Control Data and using a custom programming language designed only for that system. It was part of the Safeguard system, the first ABM system the US started. As long as projects finished successfully and on time my bosses were happy as they didn't have the time to get familiar with how things worked. On a CONUS isolated Air Force station my boss changed every 15 to 24 months. It was a great set-up for an introvert.

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Old 03-07-2012, 06:07 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by Shawn View Post
Even when they are not idiots, "group think" is often dominated by people with the loudest voice.

I enrolled in a business class in college with about 40 other students. On the first day of class, the instructor conducted a hypothetical experiment. The scenario was that you were an airplane pilot who crashed in northern Canada. No one knew where you were. There was a list of 30 survival supplies, and you needed to rank these supplies in order of desired priority. The list consisted of everything from a map, compass, pocket knife, to a wind-up alarm clock.

We first worked independently to prioritize the list of survival supplies. Then we got into groups of 5 or 6, brainstormed, and prioritized the list as a group. The responses where compared to those from survival experts. The purpose of this experiment was to demonstrate that the results from "group think" would be better than the results from each individual.

But that wasn't so in my case. I had the highest individual score in the class (also higher than all of the group scores). However, the score from my group was not very good. My group was dominated by 2 individuals who thought they knew everything and did not listen to others. Come to think of it, they were idiots too.

I ended up dropping the class after that first day. Clearly, this type of environment was not for me. I've had similar bouts of group think since that class 30 years ago. Although I dropped the class, that first day did teach me an important lesson. While it is important that I obtain input from others, in the end, I need to rely on myself. Don't be misled by smooth talkers or strong personalities.
I was in one of those groups.
My group survived rather comfortably.
Group with friendly/sociable leader didn't survive a day.

"Knowin' no one nowhere's gonna miss us when we're gone..."
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Old 03-08-2012, 03:59 AM   #23
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I am an introvert. But I need the group's approval...

Glad I got that out of the way.

Seriously, though, if you put two people together to work on a problem, the results are very good, IMO. Adding more individuals may or may not add new ideas. I've been working in a group for 6 years now, and that is my basis for opinion.
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Old 03-08-2012, 10:32 AM   #24
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That's funny. New ideas?

We don't want new ideas. We want compliant people who will follow orders.

my bumpersticker:
"I am not in a hurry.
I am retired.
And I don't care how big your truck is."
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