The Three C’s: Coordinator, Confrontation, and Connections
Our new VP of Professional Events, Yessenia, decided to host her first event about the three C’s: Coordinator, Confrontation, and Connections. These are the three skills an intern or a full-time employee need as they first step into their workplace. These skills were explained respectively by three special guests: Pamela Deluca, Marina Gospodinova, and Richard Lee. Pamela is a graduate from Hofstra University and she is currently an Interim Assistant Director in a non-profit organization called Women’s Venture Fund. Marina is a Baruch alumni who graduated with a MBA in Finance, but she is working in an advertising agency called SERINO/COYNE as a Talent Engagement Associate. Lastly, we had yet another Baruch alumni and also former president of Baruch Accounting Society, Richard Lee. Richard is now an Internal Audit Analyst in JP Morgan Chase & Co. Our professionals were stationed in three sides of the room and our attendees had to rotate into every workshop that lasted thirty minutes each.
The first station that I went to was “Coordinator” which was held by Pamela. We had a group of four people. Pamela had us introduced ourselves and asked the first question: do you prefer being a leader or a team member? Our group preferred being team leaders because we can have more freedom and control over our own work. A good point was brought up during this workshop was a good team leader should also be a good team member. A team leader should be able to represent the team, but also stand back and listen to other members’ opinions. Would you coordinate yourself as a team leader or as a team member? A favorable team leader can delegate tasks within the team and they can also give and receive constructive feedback. We also spoke about different personality tests that one can take to find out their team and leadership skills. Some of the tests were Myers-Brigg, Gallups, and Disc.
After Pamela’s workshop on how to work effectively as a team, I headed to Marina’s Confrontation station. Not only do I have to know how to work as a team, but how to manage myself within a team. Marina told us to define conflict and people said disagreements and arguments. Conflict arises from the lack of communication and misunderstandings. Although, confrontation has a bad connotation to it, we should always confront our problems instead of running away. Conflict makes people more productive because we strive to find ways to resolve them. Sometimes people don’t even realize that there is a conflict and it is up to us to show them that there is one. The most ideal situation would be to use our collaborating skills to come up with an agreement that favor all parties. However, we certainly used other ways to approach conflicts. As you can see in the chart below, there are also competing, compromising, avoiding, and accommodating approaches to confront a conflict. People come in with the mindset of collaborating, but it gradually moves down the graph to find an agreement for all parties.
Since conflicts arise from the lack of communication, how can we effectively communicate to others?
The last station that I attended was Richard’s Connections workshop. He emphasized how important it is for us to network. It is a developing process with no immediate returns. However, the magic of it is that one day someone will help you without you asking. What he did to practice networking is by attending events. He listened to how other people communicate with recruiters, professionals, and club leaders. While learning from others how to approach people during networking events, you also have create your own personal brand. You want to be that person who brings up productive and proactive topics for discussion. Our workshop also strayed a little off topic into interviews, but it was a very valuable advice that should be shared in this article. Everyone in my group said they hated the question: tell me about yourself. Richard’s response shocked all of us when he said it is his favorite question because you can tell your own story. What are the chances that someone has the same exact path as you from attending Baruch college, joining certain clubs, and starting the same internship? This question can help you differentiate yourself from other candidates and show the recruiter that you have a personality.
Overall, the event was very informative and social. The professionals spoke with ease and they were willing to answer any questions in regards to their topic. I would definitely apply these skills in my internships and future full-time jobs so that I could have a better learning experience and to create better relationships with my colleagues.