Why MBA 2017’s LT12 Takes Forever?

LT12 of MBA 2017 has gotten the reputation as the LT that takes forever to do schoolwork. My LT has always been the last to finish and submit projects across all subjects–taking from 5 hours for an HBO presentation to 13 hours for an FM simulation. In fact everyone, including ourselves, was surprised when we were the first to finish the recent FM negotiations. To our minds, we were thinking “wait, this doesn’t feel right…”

We’ve gotten some comments from other people like, “Boy, you guys are hardworking,” or “Your LT is probably the most diligent LT in the cohort.” Great things to hear from others, but TBH, it’s far from the truth.

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Get to know our LT more and on why we take forever to finish.

We actually waste a lot of time

When we have 12 hours to finish a paper, we spend 30% of our time arguing, 50% taking a break, and 20% doing the actual work. First, we argue for thirty minutes on when to have the meeting. And then for the next thirty we argue on where. Of course we have to get some chismis and updates on weekend plans. So after an hour or so, we finally review our deliverables. Whew, that was tiring, I think I need a quick break.

It doesn’t help that Joseph often brings around his games and cards; or that I bring my longboard; or Wheng’s coffee press; or that the pool is so near that Mrunal just decides to do a couple of laps.

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Can we please take this seriously?

Our conversations would go like:
“What do you feel like doing?”
“Maybe get started on our MA Report? We’re a bit lagging behind.”
“Oh, but I feel like getting a beer over shisha.”
“Hm, then I’m okay with that too.”

Arguing is a pastime

One distinct characteristic of LT12: like the British, we treat arguing like a pastime or national sport. We just cannot agree with each other. If we did, it means we’re not listening! In fact, we love it so much that instead of supporting each other’s CP in class, we often find ourselves raising our hands to contradict and disprove another’s point.

We don’t trust each other enough

We read everything. Every single case pack in our pigeonhole. We don’t simply assign the readings or homework to members, because we have to do it all.

I remember Joseph arriving and exclaiming that he already did the MCP assignment. “Why did you do it we’re supposed to do it together!?!?!” we all cried in unison. We were so angry at him that we refused to open his file and made everything on our own from scratch.

A little bit ironic, that we get angry if someone in our LT does all the work– while other LTs worry about who is actually doing the work. Joseph keeps on telling us that we are too inefficient compared to other LTs, but maybe because we simply can’t trust each other. Maybe it goes back to the first session of ECON when we tried to delegate–the boys read the readings and explained it to the rest; while the girls did the triple-bottom-line powerpoint. The next day, Prof Macaranas handed us an exam on public goods–and obviously, we flunked that test.

The girls still haven’t forgiven the boys; and we still don’t know anything about public goods. Until today, any mention of “assigning readings” is scoffed at and given a cold shoulder.

We’re all super OC–in different aspects

We have contrasting opinions and strong personalities; hence we joke about having too many CEOs in the LT. We’re also super OC–but in different ways. One is particular on technicalities and definitions; another one is anal with grammar and word use; someone is OC about the layout and design; while another wants everything neat and organized, and one is careful about using the exact numbers and figures.

While we believe this makes for a very good team, that’s also the reason why we waste so much time. Our first big fight was in Systems Thinking exam. In our 90 minute exam, Ron, Mrunal, and Joseph were arguing–for thirty minutes–that use of fertilizer and ability to use fertilizer are two different things.

Another is the amount of time we waste on formatting and reformatting our Google docs–I remember one time when Ron was openly complaining, “Who keeps on capitalizing the headlines?!” (Stef, I know it was you!), while I kept un-indenting the paragraphs that Joseph was re-indenting.

We have a lot of fun

The LT12 place-to-be is at Z Hostel Rooftop. Or Finders Keepers. Or at some random food place that Joseph has somehow convinced us to go to. We do well in escape games, and in surfing (or trying to surf). Aside from classroom learnings we believe that we should all try new things (like Jigme hasn’t seen the beach before our La Union trip!) and it’s part of the holistic MBA experience.

For the term break, I had planned for months to take a solo trip to La Union. Three days before the break, the LT asked what I was up to, and I told them I was taking a solo trip north to surf. “Oh fun, we’re coming with you!” they said, in a no permissions asked, we’re inviting ourselves kinda way. And just like that, my solo trip was no longer just me–it was now a spontaneous LT trip!

Life is short and we won’t have this much luxury of time together, so why not have fun? Sure, we have deadlines, but we also know we can wing it: We’re at our peak performance when we’re cramming.

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We are probably a very odd LT with different quirks. We fight and argue too much, but we also love each other and will defend each other’s honor to the death anyway. We treat each other like pesky little siblings: there are parts that we love and parts we hate but they’re family and at the end of the day, we know we’ll still have each other’s backs.

Learning Team 12 of MBA 2017 is composed of Jigme Choden, Joseph Dichoso, Mrunal Saxena, Rachel Arandilla, Ronald Recto, Stef Jakosalem and Wheng Bongo.

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