Volatility can emerge in any working group, particularly in a flat hierarchy with no established leader; add diversity and exhaustion to the mix, and a group is vulnerable to buckling under the pressure of its own goals. This fictional account of a contentious learning team at a business school dramatizes both the words and thoughts of the participants as frictions lead them to consider disbanding. It provides a means of discussing the nature of leadership among peers and in particular the critical but easily overlooked role of personal energy management––mental, physical, and emotional; even when the strengths of diversity are leveraged proactively, interpersonal interaction still requires a significant reservoir of positive energy, whereas its depletion can sabotage even the best of intentions.
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University of Virginia Darden School Foundation
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