Carla Sanhueza, Javiera Otero, Constanza Arqueros, Gabriel Haensgen: Searching for Proakatemia´s Equilibrium. The difference between emotional and rational learning.
by Carla Sanhueza, Javiera Otero, Constanza Arqueros, Gabriel Haensgen, Universidad Diego Portales/FEE, Chile
When we arrived to Finland, and more accurately, to Proakatemia, some powerful
differences starts to be very notorious for us about the way that Proakatemia made
knowledge in contrast to the typical way to develop knowledge. We’re talking about the old
contrast between theory and practice, between studies and doing, that is to say, between
Emotional learning and Rational learning.
We think that this subject is one of the most interesting that we can work on, because we
came for a “outside” way to look the Proakatemia method. as people who come from far
away we are trying to understand “How is this can even work?” . has been an amazing
learning experience and difficult at the same time. is for this that we want to talk about the
most important subject in this experience.
Leadership and Administration
To start, when we talk about teamwork and how it could help to generate synergy in the way
that the members of the team do their best, it’s essential that the members know what to do
and in which ways the work of the team are going to be developed. In this context,
administrators arises like a way -in a vertical hierarchy- to guide the organization to common
goals and uses the resources of the team to reach different objectives. However, why the
members of the organization wants to follow the administrator in this ways? and why we
know that the objectives before the main goal that the administrator gives to the organization
are shared for all the members of it?, in that way we want to introduce what a leader means
-”the leader is any individual whose behaviour in some group stimulates to follow” (Alvin
Gouldner)-, there are three relevant classic theories about the sources of leadership: theory
of the traits, conductual theory (Ohio State University), contingency theory (Hersey and
Blanchard), but we’re going to talk about the modern approaches that are relevant in the
subject. Specially, we’re talking about the theories behind transformational leadership.
Transformational leadership is a class of its that consist on a powerful charisma that brings
pride, respect and trust. That communicates high expectations, that promote intelligence and
rationality and makes the relationship between the power and the subordinates a personal
Is in this context when we start to link the concepts behind the transformational leadership
with the responsibility of any administrator. In summary, we know that the administrators has
power inside their organizations, but leadership is the characteristic that transform the
feeling of “I must do something” of the subordinates into a “i want to do something”. We think
that this point between both concepts shows us how a good leadership could give value to
process inside an organization, specially if these leader is related of how the company
decides which way follow.
So, what is the relationship between transformational leadership, the theories behind it that
we wrote before, and the practice elements that an entrepreneur needs to develop across
his work? we’re going to try to answer this question:
The teamworks demands synergyc efforts of all the members of an organization to arise the
best results and try to reach the goals that the organization, and when a team starts to
develop different projects, it looks as one of the core things that everyone try to do efforts to
the same way that the others. In this context it is fundamental that the way that the team
follows was the correct way to reach the goals and, in adittion, that everyone wants to follow
By the way, transformational leadership appears to be the best element to trust to help the
team reach the objectives, and if the team has a transformational leader, the practical
elements behind this road to the goals looks much more clear and easy to walk.
Objetives and Constant Improvements
Nowadays, in the business world it’s necessary have goals that guide you in the team way
and work like a nort in the take of decisions and formulation of strategies, but how to achieve
We live in continuous process of changes and for this evolve is necessary, allow ourself get
out of the comfort zone and this without a doubt means a big challenge for a lot of persons
and organizations, but we must know change constantly for adapt to environment,
costummers, suppliers, competitors, among others and their respectives variabilities.
Its common found in our works teams the fear to don’t understand why of the changes or
persons thats feels disagree with how they will be carried out, but for this is necessary have
in our organization’s resources and people management, who will encourage them to
change their attitude and make constant improvements.
As well as we learned in our Proakatemia experience during these last two weeks, one of
the principal skills necessaries in a organization is the people management, for the
development of their skills are necessaries leaders and administrators inside the
organization who helps their teams to discover new ways and motivates to be a part of the
changes that exist, and so obtain best results and involucratus with theirs team
But, what rol does it play each one and how much are necessaries for the development of
Next we will refer to the theory posed by the Heath brothers, experts in organizational
behavior and those who ask us in their book “Change the Chip” how to align the different
roles of the leaders of an organization in order to undertake better changes, pleasant and
with better results.
To achieve different objectives, it is necessary to make changes and for this it is necessary
of the energy and determination of leaders whom we will call “elephants” related to the
emotional area of the direction of people and also of the planning and direction of leaders
whom we will call “ riders ”related to the rational area of people management
Elephant is that leader who stands out for his motivation and passion, is guided by his
emotions such as love, compassion, sympathy and loyalty. In management, the elephant is
the one who identifies himself by the energy and determination he delivers and is able to
infect the members of his team.
For the other part, Rider is that leader who stands out for thinking more in the long term,
planning, containing impulses and his leadership skills, without a doubt, is guided by critical
analysis. In management, the rider is the one who plans and directs the members of his
The change generates new opportunities and ambiguity, which we relate to the elephant,
and in turn paralyzes the decision-making capacity, related to the rider. That is why both
agents are extremely necessary when setting goals and carrying out the challenges that this
Therefore, any major change generates uncertain parameters and uncertain future and a
successful change needs us to move from having ambiguous objectives to concrete
behaviors, that is, it is necessary to have a script to achieve a change, which will lead us to
decisions or strategies to face
It is necessary for the elephant to present an attractive, inspiring and emotional resonance
destination to the rider so that he can motivate himself and focus on strategies, structures
In conclusion, without a doubt the constant improvements allow us to evolve, think outside
the box and all this derives from changes and for this it is necessary to coordinate the
elephants and riders engines within an organization.
Team Work and Generating Value
Can teamwork be a source of competitive advantage? To answer this question, we must first
talk about what teamwork really means.
since we are little we are used to forming groups in many aspects of our life but the truth is
that we only know what a work team is at the moment we are faced with bigger goals, in
which we need to have people with different competencies and include processes which
allow us to achive our objective.
According to bateman, we can define a work team as “Team is a small group of people with
complementary skills that commit to a common goal, a set of performance goals and an
approach for which they consider each other responsible” (1)This definition is simple to
observe in the different equipment that exists in Prokatemia. and especially if we see it from
the experience with the Apaja team.
The group dynamics that are lived within Prokatemia are given in two ways. The first is a
group made up of 23 people who share various instances of learning and in addition to
making group commitments they carry out activities that allow the group to coalesce as are
the instances of learning contract and the “cabin in the woods”.
Apaja is shown as a highly cohesive team with clear standards, the real work is observed in
the small groups that are formed from this.
small groups are born with a specific purpose which is to develop an enterprise, this
enterprise must be a motivation for each of the members.
This is why they are encouraged to work on projects that are related to their personality and
personal goals. It is in this instance where the members of Apaja live the group processes
and learn to interact with a common goal.
Although Apaja is an efficient work team, it shows no characteristics of being a high
Among the first characteristics that we could observe was the lack of adequate leadership
within the team despite the fact that they have an administrator this is maintained in that
category since it fails to motivate the different participants to achieve a common project so
that so far have not carried out any project that involves the participation of all individuals.
Now that we define a team, we can ask ourselves if teamwork can become a competitive
advantage within the organization.
The competitive advantage can be achieved through the responsible and conscious use of
our resources, when we have this perspective we seek that each of the members of our
team develop all their competencies to the fullest.
This search to be a source of advantage will result in the work team being valuable,
uncommon, not inimitable and, above all, not substitutable. being for the clients the work
team of the enterprise an added value at the time of consuming the products.
In what has been observed in apaja, you can see too much of the potential that exists within
the team, it only remains to place its mark on the projects they carry out so that they are
unified by the values they share.
Using Personality as a Tool
When I think of human relationships, precisely at the moment when you need to interact with
a group of people to reach a particular end together, I cannot imagining what would happen
if behind this process of joining together different types of personalities, as for example,
when we coordinate teamwork with work environment, what would happen if we study a little
more behind simply making a random selection? What would happen if we join together two
persons with personalities that “crash” ? Do they normally relate to each other, for example,
on a day-to-day basis? Would an avoidable chaos really unleash just for not preparing how
to choose a team group?
We must accept that in life we will not has to work with the people that we choose or we
want, it could happen that we have to share with people with different abilities that do not fit
our personality. That is why I come to think, what would happen if companies took a really
preoccupation of choosing the members of a work team? What would be the repercussions
within a company when they faced with a decision of this nature?
Probably this series of questions was asked by a group of experts in the area of psychology,
who propose a new way to increase productivity within companies: by just spending a little
time studying human relationships within the personality selection, we managed to build a
better work team, combining types of personalities with whom the performance probably
shows an improvement with just knowing a little further to the people who are working within
a company and their personal relationships as well as job.
On my daily life at Proakatemia, I can’t avoid to get attention of students’ performance in
striving to strengthen these interpersonal relationships. Each work team takes the necessary
time to know who they will work with in the next years of their career, since they are clear
that the productivity of the team will be positive and greater if they take time and dedicate
themselves to knowing each other, forgetting the possible barriers that could appear when
they thought that they would be related to a person who might not be in their circle in real life
because of the difference in personality trades, since in the practice of this teaching
methodology we find that they make the work teams at the second year, since in the first one
they participate in a type of leveling of different types of subjects to start working with the
same knowledge as to what it will be to start with a new company: this selection is not
random, but students do not feel satisfied with this selection, because many of they mention
that they probably would not have been friends if they were not in the same work group.
This topic catches my attention a lot, since despite mentioning that they might not have been
involved before the selection of the university to the work group, they give everything to
maintain good relations and worry about each other: in case some partner misses his job,
they worry about knowing how he is, what is the reason behind his absence and provide
help if he needs it, despite knowing that probably at the end of the race interpersonal
relationships will end because a lack of affinity.
This is how we realize that in order to have an effective working group, it is not necessary to
positively interact with peers but actively congender with others, since by applying a little
empathy in relations with the working group, gain more confidence with those who perform
the different areas within the same jobs that each team has.
When I talk about personality as a tool, I seek to propose a possible solution to the positive
interaction of group members, since we could take advantage of these qualities to achieve
greater productivity towards the company. I mean what makes us unique: what are the
characteristics that make us different and special in front of someone else, without the need
for a competition or a comparison with the skills of other people. We refer to the particular
way of thinking, the way of acting that an individual has in front of different situations that are
exposed in life, not only in front of a work situation or a moment of stress at some particular
Within a work team, when talking about productivity, we define it as the ability of people to
take full advantage of their skills within this group work and when we talk about teamwork,
we focus on concise work, which I managed to define the productivity of the different areas
to exploit the tools we already have, but we fail to see or understand them to get the most
out of them.
Productivity, according to the Real Academia Española, refers in the field of business to
“relationship between the produced and the means used”, which involves the workforce, the
different materials used, energy, among others. Then we refer to the ability to achieve a goal
with the appropriate investment of resources, which can be of different types, among which
we can find both tangible and intangible resources, exemplifying in the latter the most
intrinsic characteristics of a person, such as It would be the personality.
It should be noted that when we talk about productivity, I do not seek to make reference to
perform tasks quickly, if not, to achieve them with a combination of immediacy and quality,
since it is not enough to perform a task in an expedited way if this leads to a bad result.
To realize effective productivity, we need to perform a task management, better planning our
times and the means we will use to perform tasks. This management allows us to enhance
productivity within the organization, but first we must establish priorities, ranking them
among the most relevant and important tasks both in the short and long term, depending on
the priorities established by the organization.
On the same side, normally within organizations it is forgotten that this productivity could be
enhanced with a key factor which is often forgotten by high-ranking people within a
company, which is personality.
Nowadays, it is important to highlight the personality within the basic characteristics of a
person within a human group, since knowing how to achieve an effective combination
between different types of personalities, we can take advantage of what would be a
conception of a group ideal work: if we manage to form a work team which is formed by
different types of intelligence, we could perform an effective job, which would give us greater
productivity compared to a team which fails to exploit their skills and mix the skills of a
certain way to complement the different types of work with personality.
The types of personality tests can help minimize the costs of hiring a company and the
turnover of staff, so I suggest that if you do them in due time we will be able to get the
highest possible productivity for Proakatemia students when forming your Work team for the
next few years.
The most used personality tests are four:
(1) Capter Profile : is responsible for measuring the personality traits of an individual and
how these traits could interfere in the development of work. This test is based on a
series of statements and the candidate must choose the one that best suits their
point of view.
(2) Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) : One of the most used to know the personality of
the candidate. Companies that are part of the Fortune 100 use this tool to hire a new
talent in the company. There are 16 predefined personalities, which can be identified
by answering 93 questions.
(3) SHL (Occupational Personality Questionnaire) : gives us information on how
behaviors influence work performance. It focuses on three main areas: styles of
thoughts and feelings, relationship with people and emotions. With this report we find
the strengths and weaknesses of each candidate.
(4) Hogan Personality Inventory (HPI) : It consists of 206 questions, which must be
answered in 15-20 minutes. It shows how the person would act against different
types of problems.
To identify which of these tests is applicable to Proakatemia, we need to think about what we
want to identify in the candidate for each work team. It will depend on what specific skill we
are looking for in order to coordinate the best work team and to be able to strengthen the
members among each other in order to have an optimal result for the organization.The human resources area has greatly expanded the use of the Personality Test to define it
as a work tool. If we identify the correct way to enhance everything that involves integrating
a new person into the team, we can exploit their skills in the best way to get a strong team,
where the skills are coupled. What we can achieve by applying a personality test will not only
help the University to motivate the creation of different programs to study the same students.
Using this tool helps to become a driver of change within the work team as each of the
members becomes more fully understood, implementing work and motivation strategies.
With this tool we will be able to increase the well-being and loyalty of all the staff towards the
work team, since there will be a psychological study behind, which encourages fellowship
and teamwork, creating a more productive work environment and we will be able to capture
different types of talent that may not have been identified so far.