Hey, its day 6, almost a week, Isn’t it? And we will be done by the event in another week, and all back to their home. We all (organizers, expert, participants) have been planning for the event since long and now have reached to the mid of Wetskills NL. The journey of all is actually on thrill now, at the exponential phase.
The day started early at 7:20 am, all gathered at the hotel reception of the EasyHotel @ Rotterdam. Floor and Frank were counting if all have arrived or we are still waiting for someone. The hotel reception became the breakfast lounge as it was really early to find any breakfast outlet open. Some with coffee, some with bread, some could manage to sit and all waiting to start their journey to the RDM Campus. Suddenly, there is a message in Whatsapp group of Wetskills’ 2017, “Hey we just woke up, at what time are we are supposed to leave today?” This was the result of yesterday’s night relaxation at café. But Hamed and Ahmed managed to get down as early and we all could leave for today’s session at RDM Academy at 7:40 am.
We all had to travel using public transportation so, all International participant were confused as very few had the public transport pass called OV-Chipcard but all Dutch participants helped them to avail one. The exciting part of the travel was by bus, post-metro travel as we missed the first bus and had ample time to catch the next which served as a good slot for early morning smiling captures.
Figure I: Early morning captures to utilize the waiting time at the bus station
After all the morning hassle we finally reached the Innovation DOCK @ RDM Campus at 8:45am. We all received a warm welcome by Dorien Suntjens & Bas de Rooi, our trainers for the Personal Leadership workshop. All could quickly grab cup of coffee to kick start the day and the session began at 9 am. The session was for three hours so Floor and Frank left us with Bas and Dorien.
Figure II: Participants of Wetskills 2017 arrives at RDM Campus
Bas and Dorien started the workshop with enthusiasm and to keep up the interest glowing for 3 long hours, they framed an interactive session. The session began with introduction and illustrative examples of “Discover your personal Talents”, as how well we know ourselves, our Talent, are we satisfied with our current situation, etc. The session was divided into four segments and we were divided in each sub-sessions in different teams but different team members. The sessions made us to self-assess, self-realization (focusing on Strength, Weakness, Opportunities, Threats), how well do we know ourself, how well do we present and project ourselves, how do we react in a particular situation and how diverse could be reactions based on different personalities. The exercise of knowing ourselves, accepting the way we are, be bold enough to change what we feel that is not required in our lives was definitely challenging for us but no doubt added on positive note to our personality development.
It was really interesting as well as received genuine feedback on our personalities. We all could relate to our behaviors and personal traits. They also made us to think what made our personality by joining and skipping the momental dots of our lives, this was certainly self-reflecting and helpful as the exercise made us not only to reflect on our lives but also to listen and interpret others accepting their life experiences in an appreciative way. The last session was not only tricky and thoughtful but stimulating as well. Here, we not only found our core quality as our strengths, but how core quality can become threat to our personalities if exaggerated, was also illustrated, similarly how the exaggeration can be normalized to maintain balance between the strengths and weakness was also delivered through exercises. Three hours long exercise ended with feedback on the workshop attended and reflection on participation by Wetskills team.
Figure III: Participants of Wetskills 2017 with Dorien Suntjens & Bas de Rooi, Trainer for Personal Leadership Workshops
After the long session, we had a lunch break and discussion time for all groups to reflect on the Idea they propose to deal with the challenge. Post lunch, there were no session to be attended and was good for teams after all brain hurricanes, field visits and feedback on respective action plans. Groups started to focus more on building pitches as Thursday (26 October) is the rehearsing day for 2 minute Pitch-In presentation and with all the information from case owners, participants are now well informed and enthusiastic to present, so, the free time post session was useful to frame the first look of the pitch-in. Some groups worked late till 5pm and some winded up early to take exciting shopping and food break and return to work after dinner.
Groups splits up to enjoy their freedom of working in their own way and not conventional way of sitting in a room for hours. Different groups spent their evening differently with sightseeing, dinner, and preparing for exciting Wednesday ahead.
By Ruchira Ghosh & Erwin Schoen
Figure IV: Sightseeing around Rotterdam
Figure V: Participants of Wetskills 2017 relaxing at dinner @Small Asia