GEB 2930 Penelope at Work Video Discussion

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GEB 2930 Penelope at Work Video Discussion




Developing effective teams can be challenging. There are different personalities to deal with when working in teams, but the benefits can be extraordinary.

Review the “Penelope at Work” video in your Module 04 lessons folder under “Managing Team Conflict” and discuss the following:

  • What do you think were the causes of the conflict between Penelope and Peter?
  • What should happen to get them to work more cohesively as a team?
  • What problems have you encountered in school or in your career when working in teams or a group setting?
  • What was the cause of the conflict? How did the conflict get resolved?

Good evening classmates,

The initial causes of conflict between Peter and Penelope began before this meeting with Maurice. They both have issues stemming from their initial meeting together that they have not resolved. It seems as though they both still believe in what they produced, but the other is not convinced. They also do not seem to see eye to eye on the decisions being made for this campaign. They have issues of confrontation, compromise, collaboration, and avoidance in this scenario.

Working cohesively on a team requires all involved to stay open-minded while bringing professional input to the task at hand. Collaboration between the two partners needs to search for solutions that encompass both of their ideas. To do that, though, they both need to cooperate and respect one another’s professional opinions. Maurice kept saying “we” in the video, confusing me as to if he was supposed to be a part of a team working on this marketing campaign or not. If it is just Peter and Penelope working together on this campaign, I constitute their relationship as a partnership, not a team. Studies on teamwork have shown that smaller groups are more effective and have less bureaucracy, but does this team of two need a third wheel? This may be an instance where a third member could help to alleviate some of the confrontation and avoidance that seems to be happening between Peter and Penelope.

In terms of a team versus a working group, some points direct us to both. There is not a focused leader. They both have mutual accountability, and their work is supposed to be collective. This team is a bit of a mess and does not seem to have a clear understanding or respect for each other’s roles. Peter and Penelope are in the Storming stage of team development, where the members are in conflict and disagreement. At this point, a leader should encourage participation and ask them to shelve their differences to complete the task at hand. Suppose Maurice, who seems to be the leader, accomplished this step appropriately with their meeting. In that case, Peter and Penelope will move past the Storming phase into the Norming stage, where order and cohesion are established.

I have worked in the restaurant industry for over twenty years now, and being part of a team is the only way I know. We depend on one another to complete our tasks with each paying guest who walks through the door, beginning with our hostess. From the moment a guest walks into the building, our team begins completing service professionally and efficiently. The team is the staff as a whole in a restaurant. If one part of the team falters or makes a mistake, the entire team has to help correct the error and hustle to get back on track to complete the task and complete service. There have been many shifts in my time that another team member, a kitchen staff member, or myself has made an error that you can feel like dominoes, hitting everyone and every piece on its way down. For example, I forgot to ring in one of my four guest’s orders, and it is a well-done steak entrée. At my restaurant, I would have to immediately let a manager know the error, ring that steak dinner in, let the kitchen know that I need that entrée as soon as possible, and run to apologize to my guests. Now, because I have made this error, a manager has to stop what they are doing to apologize to the guest and check-in with the kitchen ensuring that the entrée will be coming out on the fly. Above that, we have stopped the train in the kitchen; that steak has become a top priority moving all other orders down the line putting everyone else’s order in the restaurant behind it. This immediately puts every server in the building into fight or flight mode, trying to run as much food as possible to help alleviate the situation. It is a domino effect that creates almost a tidal wave effect on everyone in the team and their guests that they are taking care of. Every member of the team is vital and contributes to the success of the group.


Jessica Hamilton


  • For your reply post, discuss whether or not there was a better approach that your classmate could have taking to resolve their conflict? How would you have handled the situation?

Remember to be specific!

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