When Unbridled Competition Breeds Contempt for the Team

The computer biz is a very ruthlessly competitive profession, so it’s no surprise that our kids in Silicon Valley are also very competitive and individualistic. But there’s also the concept of the team working towards a goal. And when that basic underpinning is lost, so is respect. Contempt for members follows – whether we’re working on a new storage device or operating system, or on a robot.

So where are we heading? Julie Patel wrote a balanced article on why the very successful Gunn High School robotics team imploded, resulting in their disbanding. It contained enough to read between the lines as to what really happened. It’s a good Silicon Valley morality tale on how contempt can replace respect, suck in even “responsible adults”, and ultimately take out everyone on the team.

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