Group project survival guide

Whether you’re working on something as big as a science fair project or as small as a first-day get-to-know-you activity, it’s always tough to work with someone who wasn’t your first choice. And even if ya did pick your teammates, you might find that they’re not as fab as you thought. So here’s how to turn any problem project into an A+ effort in no time flat.

The Sitch: You’re givin’ 110 perecent while your partner isn’t doing a thing.

The Solution: First, make sure that your groupie isn’t just bein’ quiet ‘cause you’re comin’ on too strong. So ask her for her opinions, and divide up the work evenly between you. Then if she’s still not pulling her weight after a bit, do what ya can to make up her part of the activity. Afterwards, you can have a private convo with your Teach about what went wrong in your group’s dynamic.


The Sitch: You don’t trust your groupie to remember his role.

The Solution: If you’re worried that your partner isn’t gonna remember to bring in the paper you wrote together when it’s due in 2 days, either volunteer to be the one who looks after the final product, or just copy it. Tell him that copies will make a good fallback plan in case one of you ends up being sick on the day that your work is due.


The Sitch: Ms. Bossypants is totally runnin’ the show, and you haven’t gotten a word in edgewise about this project so far.

The Solution: Stick up for yourself, gal! If you’ve got good ideas, don’t be afraid to share ‘em. Sulking in the corner isn’t gonna get you noticed, and if ya let her take on all the work, she might just take all the credit, too. So make sure that you’ve put in your two cents ‘cause the last thing ya want is a low grade for bein’ quiet.


The Sitch: Everyone in your group is totally chill, which is great… ‘til you need a leader.

The Solution: Somebody’s gotta step up to the plate, and it might as well be you, chica. You don’t have to be super bossy – just divvy up the workload evenly, and make sure everyone gets started alright on their parts of the project.


The Sitch: You’ve got not one, but two leaders in the group. Yikes!

The Solution: Compromising is key. See if you two can find some middle ground, and if not, you’ll just have to take turns making decisions. Maybe you do half the project her way, and half your way. Just don’t waste all your time arguing ‘cause neither of you will be happy if it doesn’t get done at all.


The Sitch: You and your bud are fresh outta inspiration for what topic to pick for your project.

The Solution: Hit the library, hun! Or at least check out the library’s search engine online, if you don’t have time to actually go there. Use broad search terms, and scan for something that interests ya. Then you can narrow it down to an awesome topic, once you’ve found a direction that suits you.


So chicas, how do you deal with groups that are less than perf?

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by Carrie Ruppert | 2/1/2016