Reflections from an international coordinator’s desk – about working in teams

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Koge (DK), January 2019 - Three years ago, our school had not worked with KA2-projects for many years. Therefore, we were looking for excellent and experienced partners at various conferences. Yes – we admit that we tried to think tactically! Right from the beginning, we knew that we really wanted to work with KA2-projects, and we were fully aware of the fact that we had to find partners who understood that and accepted us as “the new girls in the class”.

We had attended more roundtable sessions lead by the very professional Margrieta Krose from Landstede – so at the EfVet conference in 2016, we arranged with her to come to Denmark to talk about the project Qual4T. We had a very good connection, and we were invited to become partners in this project, which is the continuation of the Qual4T-project.
If we at this point claimed that we had the slightest overview of the impact of the project work, we would be telling a lie! Working with a KA2-project was, as mentioned, a brand new experience to us – and we had to cope with a lot of new EU-terms, among other things.

Retrospectively, we have been supported by three very important factors:
Good planning: Especially for newcomers, planning is essential. It creates the possibility of a better overview of the process, making it easier to spot where to come up with relevant input. In our case, we found it quite overwhelming in the beginning to see all the schedules and excel-sheets prepared by the project management in advance – but very quickly these sheets turned out to our saviors if there were issues we needed to understand.
An open-minded group, ready for changes: Naturally, it has been a huge help and advance for us to work together with experienced, super-confident and professional colleagues from Europe. We have been so lucky to start our “project-career” as part of a group which quickly became not only good colleagues, but also good friends! We have had a lot of good laughs together, and last, but not least, we have remembered to celebrate every little step and victory of our common journey!
Be responsible: It is obvious that as a newcomer you are given tasks that the group needs to solve. Apart from the common tasks, we have found out that it is essential to offer whatever makes sense for the common work. This can be done on and off – but when making own contributions, the opportunity is there to make an impact on the work, even in old teams.
Now, at the end of the journey of the Qual4T2-project, we feel that we have gained a lot of experience. Our project focuses on strengthening the quality in teams at VET schools, and we can conclude that we ourselves have been part of a team working with quality.
All in all, we have learned which competences are needed to reach excellent results together – and luckily this is in line with the recommendations we give to our colleagues around Europe through our common project.

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