BBA102 Essay Assessment 2.
Thai soccer team incident 2018
Lecturer’s Name and Course Number
In 2018, the group of 12 boys, members of a football team aged between 11 to 16 years were trapped in the cave of Tham Luang. The search was started to rescue the 12 children trapped for several days in a cave in northern Thailand. Some parents spent the night there, settled on simple jute cloths on the muddy ground of the park in the north of the country, on the border with Burma. Heavy rain and flood waters hampered the rescue efforts but officials believed that they are alive. The 12 boys entered the Tham Luang cave in Mae Sai district with their coach on 23rd June 2018. It was a tedious rescue operation but the teamwork of Thai and International teams made it possible.
The teamwork and management at this stage were very important because an efficient team with common objectives is much more effective than a list of people working individually, no matter how much potential these people have. In an event like this, one of the most important things is to be able to form a team and not a group and without a doubt, it is one of the most critical success factors of the rescue project. Seeing this at the macro level, it is to be appreciated that how they developed a teamwork strategy that led the team to success (Frazer and Oswald, 2009).
The case of the football team was very clear because there was a common objective at the national and international level. Irrespective of race and of thoughts, all the teams worked day and night to bring the team and their coach back to life. This event and how it was reacted is one of the greatest examples of national and international people working as a team, with a clear objective. They were able to manage stress, which blocks us and makes us unable to think correctly. This would not have been done without teamwork and management of all the rescue teams (ABC News, 2018).
What made international teamwork and management effective was their professional training to deal with such situations in a calm way. They together developed a common strategy and several dozens of rescuers were mobilized for the research. The teams went down and explored the bottom of the cave. There was no network inside so the people outside had to wait until they came back from the cave. Navy seals and other search units also participated and looked for them in the cave (Gartenstein, 2018).
The operation was conducted by three teams: one outside, to find if the cave has another entrance and two teams inside. Divers of the Thai Navy took turns to probe the bottom of the cave in which the water reaches in places five meters high. The rain continued in this very remote area of northern Thailand and it boosted precipitation with the passage of time. The army constructed a dam to block the water flowing down the mountain that was going in the cave (Viswanathan, 2018).
It was a race against the clock but the rescue teams did not panic. The first days of research did not reveal the slightest trace of the group inside. The authorities believed that they may have found refuge a little further, in this cave several kilometers long, to escape the rising waters. It was a mother who gave the alert when she did not see her son coming back from the football training. The group's bicycles and shoes were found a few hours later just outside the cave, in a large park. The operation was supervised by the country’s top officials who provided all the facilities and helped the rescue teams to collaborate and work with each other for the common objective.
On the 10th of July, the twelve children and their young football coach trapped for 18 days in a flooded cave in northern Thailand were successfully evacuated as a result of teamwork and good management. In the beginning, eight children were taken out of the cave, they were hospitalized and were found to be in good mental health. All the children underwent radiological examinations and blood tests. Two boys who showed signs of pneumonia received antibiotics and became healthy (Robbins and Coulter, 2018).
This was surely an international operation because a quarter of the team of divers were foreigners. There were a lot of risks in the operation such as the reduction of 15 percent of the oxygen, the floods by rains and the mental health of the children. The children received basic diving classes to travel four kilometers to the exit of the cave and most of the children were numbered at the time of approaching the water capsules. The capsules, designed by Elon Musk, were transported by divers to the surface. The teamwork made it possible to dig a five-meter tunnel to keep warm from the low temperatures and humidity of the cave (Viswanathan, 2018).
The team learning was the key to the success of this operation. In the beginning, the rescuers had postponed the start date of the operation, preferring to send divers to take care of the children on the end of the rock, while trying to lower the water level. The international teams from US and cave divers from Belgium, UK, Scandinavia, Australia, and many other countries took part in this operation. Some of them had volunteered, and few were requested by the authorities of Thailand. One navy diver who voluntarily participated in the mission sacrificed his life in this mission.
The journey to save them was indeed fraught with pitfalls and it was impossible to recover them from such a deep cave. Located one kilometer deep, they had to go up four kilometers of underground galleries, sometimes submerged, with obstacles, all in the darkness. It took good management and the teamwork of three days for the professional divers to pass 1.7 km of narrow hoses to the first base camp of the rescuers, with a passage of 80 centimeters wide and 40 high. This teamwork was very much appreciated by everyone around the globe (ABC News, 2018).
The teamwork experience has been very beneficial for me during this course. I learned the principles of teamwork. I also learned how to collaborate with other members to achieve a common goal. For teamwork, everyone is required to present their ideas and at the end, the best one is selected on which everyone tries to give his 100% and collaborate with each other to attain the final goal. I believe that communication is the key to teamwork, without it, it is not possible to work in a team (Cooley, 2002).
This course is surely of great importance for me and for other mates as well because it would help us to deal with any such situation in the future. I am highly thankful to the instructor of this course for guiding us sincerely and friendly. The basic and advanced knowledge that I have gained from this course will surely be employed by me in the future not only in such sort of events but also during the projects of higher study and during my employment activities. The teamwork in the case of football team described above has further deepened my knowledge of teamwork.
ABC News (2018). There were more people rescued from the Thai cave than you think. [online] ABC News. Available at: https://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-09-27/workers-trapped-in-thai-cave/10311758 [Accessed 8 May 2019].
Cooley, C. (2002). Teamwork – what teamwork?. Cancer Nursing Practice, 1(1), pp.2-18.
Frazer, R. and Oswald, P. (2009). Teamwork!. New York: Simon Spotlight.
Gartenstein, D. (2018). Management Theories. [online] Bizfluent. Available at: https://bizfluent.com/info-8375509-four-types-management-theory.html [Accessed 8 May 2019].
Robbins, S. and Coulter, M. (2018). Management. Harlow, United Kingdom: Pearson Education Limited.
Viswanathan, R. (2018). The rescue of the 12 Thai boys who were trapped in a cave, explained. [online] Vox. Available at: https://www.vox.com/science-and-health/2018/7/5/17532464/thai-soccer-team-cave-rescue-diving-monsoon [Accessed 8 May 2019].
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