The case study “The Army Crew Team” describes the preparation and team selection for the 2000-meter national boat race competition. Colonel Stas Preczewski, the coach of
The Army Crew team for the United States Military Academy at West Point selects two team teams, Varsity (V) and the Junior Varsity (JV) after a long series of objective tests measuring their speed, strength, and coordination. The Junior Varsity (JV) crew boat frequently beats the Varsity (V) boat during practice and in some races. This was not supposed to happen because team V consisted of the top eight rowers whereas JV was having bottom eight rowers.
According to U.S. Olympic Committee research project, coaches prefer four distinct categories concerning issues of 1) strength and conditioning, 2) rowing technique, 3) psychological dimensions, and 4) program organization for national team selection. Coach P. showed lack of expertise in team selection, he considered the merely physical performance of individuals, not psychological during team selection.
As important as individual skills were, it was crucial for the eight individuals
athletes to synchronize their rowing. Here why the Varsity was slower than Junior Varsity because of the lack of teamwork (“the whole less than the sum of the parts”). No one was the leader in the V group while several were the team disruptors, members critique each other, they feel themselves alone and says “I am the one carrying the boat”. On the other hand, JV boat was having a better team result than individuals and was having no disruptors, great team spirit, positive slogan “nothing to lose”, one for all “we’re rowing for every guy in that boat because we don’t want to let him down.” Also, Coach P. conducted CEP training to improve the team performance, but the V team was having skeptical perception about the training, whereas JV team was having positive perception and they had tendency to improve and study.
According to a newsletter from Harvard Business School Publishing, “Are You Rewarding Solo Performance at the Team’s Expense?” the author states about “aligning individual and team performance metrics”. He says that as much as possible, use the same or similar metrics to evaluate both team and individual performance. Here Coach P. had selected the top eight rowers for the Varsity boat based on individual strength, but he did not use the same metric to measure the V team performance. The performance of the V team does not only depend on individual strength but also on the teamwork of group members. So, Coach P. should use the same metrics to judge individual rower’s performance, which is individual strength as well as their teamwork.
In my opinion, Coach P. should Switch the Varsity and Junior Varsity team title because the other two options are not feasible as JV team members want to play together and they do not want to switch individual boat members with V team. Similarly, intervene to improve the Varsity boat’s performance does not seem practical because National championship race is just four days away and it’s unlikely to change their psychological level and resolve the team conflicts. Hence, I recommend Coach P. to fine tune the performance of the Junior Varsity team in last 4 days so that they can win the champion trophy.
In conclusion, in order to win the National championship race Coach P. need to finalize the national team as soon as possible because not only the race is just 4 days away, but also he has complex situation where a Varsity team which is consist of top eight rowers, but they have no enthusiasm about the championship, on the other hand, the Junior Varsity team has bottom eight rowers which are well established and highly enthusiastic about the race.

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