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You have to prove why you can work in teams, both taking the lead or simply helping out. And tell your recruiter - So, what tells you that you are a good team player? For that situation you should have some examples, and what better way than explaining how Model UN has taught you what matters when working in teams?
The three phases that a good team player goes throughListening, discussion and implementation
The first, and many times neglected, trait is listening. Without good listening skills, you are trapped. You are no aware of the needs and requirements of your team neither can you react to them. And listening goes far beyond what reaches your ears. Listening means grasping what your counterpart is telling you - also by the tone and body language.
When you are an MUNer you are going to perfect this skills, if you do MUN right. What you need as a good delegate is to listen closely. To absorb and understand what delegates are saying and most of all, what they are meaning. When you are an organizer, at best, you are the one listening most to your team members who update you on their work. Only then you are able to give appropriate feedback. And then as a chair - you are going to listen a lot. Long debates and speeches await you but you follow them all, interested and at the edge. While you are at it, you learn to differentiate between what a delegate says and what a delegate means. Many people are able to hold long speeches without saying a word. And as a chair, likely you are one of the fortunate who can identify such people.
Do we actually do anything else than discussing all day? Standing up for our ideas but also figure out compromises? This sounds familiar doesn't it? Nevertheless, there is one thing that sets your efforts apart from all those who claim they "love to discuss politics". Of course, you do to. But there is much more to it when you are a delegate at the Model UN. Your discussions are guided, they are strategic and most of all, they happen in a professional setting. At the end of the day, you have a physical proof of your debating skills with the certificate of participation. And who knows, maybe you won the best delegate award?
You have also realized that MUN is not a one-man-show but a true team effort. Both in terms of organization but also when you are trying to formulate the resolution. You are fighting for your clause, you are discussing an amendment at length with the other delegates. In the end, even though it might seem, we are doing nothing else all day at the conference, the skills that we obtain while debating are invaluable: Patience, Endurance, Persuasion and Debating skills.
Only after successful listening and discussion the implementation will be a success. Many teams jump straight to the implementation - be it because of sheer enthusiasm or because of the fact that they feel they lack time. Have you ever started writing your draft resolution by yourself and it never made it through the first moderated caucus? I did. Because I did not listen to the others who were interested in other points on the agenda and I did not discuss my points with them either. A truly frustrating experience. And the same goes for teams. With one person running with their ideas, not listening to the others for advice or feedback and neither discussing proposals beforehand, the entire team is on a path to frustration and mistrust.
But as an MUNer, you have - either by reading my story or because of your own experience - already learned that any good team needs get to the phase of implementation. However, only after the other two phases. A successful group work and a happy team are the result. So tell that recruiter maybe about a frustrating experience and how you learned from that. I did. And that's what was a deciding factor for my boss to hire me back then.
Team Work - an MUNer can not be fooled. Team work is hard, takes time and effort and most importantly, your nerves. But only together you can reach a final goal. Be that a successful conference like your next MUN or a draft resolution that even the US and Russia accept. And with such real-life stories you can explain to your recruiter not only why you are team-player, but also how you got there and what a good team member is like.
And surely, you do not end up like these guys...
What are your experiences of teamwork at MUN? How have you explained your team spirit at your last job interview? Share your view in the comment section!