Tuesday, September 15, 2009

A Lesson in Teamwork

A number of years ago, I was coaching a soccer team of 5-6 year old boys and girls.  At our first practice, I told the kids we need to pick a team name and asked for ideas.  The boys starting blurting out names like Destroyers, Bombers, Blasters, and so on.  After the boys ran out of variations on destruction, one of the girls said, "how about the Strawberries?," which drew a loud round of boos from the boys.

I said OK, let's take a vote and started working down the proposed names one at a time, counting votes along the way.  Each of the boys voted for his own idea with an occasional supporting vote or two from the other boys.  When I got to the Strawberries, all of the girls raised there hands at once, and I said, "great, our team is the Strawberries!"

Surprisingly, the girls did not plan to work together; it was a wonderful example of spontaneous and implicit teamwork!

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