Representing your team?

Obviously FIRST participants should be aware of the fact that their actions represent themselves, their teams, their schools, and their sponsors. But are our teams judged based on the actions of the few? And should they be?

This discussion arose in another thred. Team numbers have been edited out. Not that everyone hasn’t already read the thread these quotes have been pulled from, but let’s make this a hypothetical discussion, please.

While Yan Wang has a point, both the team and its members must act responsibly. The member should keep in mind that he is representing his team, and the team should keep in mind that it is being represented. If the member behaves inappropriately, the team should reprimand that member. If the inappropriate action was directed towards another team, the member should be responsible to apologize. But if the member committed the infraction in the first place, they may not do so. At this point it is the responsibility of the team to approach the offended team and offer an apology and/or explanation. I don’t know if this is what occurred in the censored example, but that is how (in my humble opinion) the situation should have been handled.

FIRST people are cool people. I think they’d accept apologies.

I agree totally.

I’ll add another “hypothetical” example for people to think about.

At one of our regionals we had our normal team section. However a kid from another team sat down in the front row of our section. That isn’t a huge deal, but when our team would cheer for us or some other team, he he would glare at us or, sometimes, tell us to shutup because we were hurting his ears.

He sat with us all three days. On the second day towards the end he was asked politely (by an adult) to move to his team’s section. He refused. He came back the next day and was asked again to leave. He refused again.

We never recieved any sort of apology for his behavior.

I agree with you as well, and I would like to add another “hypothetical” situation to this thread. Last year, we had a team member who pretty much needed constant surveilance (not medical or anything, just making sure he doesn’t mess up), and during an extremely busy period before one of our matches, he went off unattended, went to another team’s pits, took their controls, and began to drive their robot around before they were able to reset it, nearly running over some of their team members. After matches were over, the mentor of that team came over and had a chat with us, at which time we expressly apologized for the wrong-doing of the team member. Thankfully, the mentor graciously took our heart-felt apology without any more mention of the event, although I am now always careful about how our team members behave and could possibly make an impression on other teams/judges.

Texan, there are usually event security members around, i would’ve asked the security to escort him away from your section…since all he was doing was complaining. people like that bug me…when they see that you’ve reserved a section, and they park themselves there…grrr…

Here is the way that I look at it.

If you did something at regionals that wasn’t too great and your sponsor saw that - would they pick you up next year?

You are representing yourself, team, school, sponsors, ect. weather you like it or not. It just comes with the package of FIRST.


Andy Baker has had it in his sig for awhile, and it will always be true.

Of course, I’m sure I am guilty of it too. But it’s just part of life.

One problem with this situation… you are not supposed to reserve seats at the competitions. It’s listed in the site info for every Regional event on the FIRST web site. They usually even make an announcement about it at the event, however, they do not enforce it. That kid had every right to park his butt down smack in the middle of that team’s “section”, they should be glad he went to the front and it was just one kid. The only way security should and could be called in is if he used threatening behavior (i.e. saying he was going to clock the next person who yelled in his ear). Why the kid wanted to sit there after the first day is between him and his masochistic mind. Your best bet in dealing with someone like that is to ignore him and just keep cheering.

So yeah, saving seats is breaking the rules… but I believe most teams do it. It’s good for unity and team spirit, and from the point of view of a chaperone, it’s good to have a common meeting spot. But if someone who is not on your team sits down in your section, and you tell them to move you are in the wrong, and asking them to move, even politely, is just rude. Instead, welcome them, if your team is one of the loud cheering teams, maybe give them warning in advance like “Excuse me, we love our team, so we’re going to scream and hoot and holler until you would think our lungs will surely burst during the next round.” or something like that.


if you’re always busy minding the actions of others, how can you mind your own?

Our team has a policy that all team members must conduct themselves with respect towards other teams, or face possible expulsion from the team - we’ve pretty much got a zero-tolerance policy towards misconduct towards members of other teams. It’s essentially team policy (and school policy, for that matter) that everybody on the team is a representative of Malvern Robotics when we are at the city in which the regional is taking place (or the nationals, if we ever get there).

That would be why we didn’t have someone kick him out. :slight_smile:

when you are at an event or other public place, and you are wearing a uniform, you represent yourself and the organization that uniform represents,

whether it is a firemans uniform, military, sports team, or FIRST team - a part of team spirit and sportsmanship is understanding that when you put on a uniform, you represent the whole team

Personally I think this forum is not an example of that- we post as individuals, we dont consent with the rest of our team to review and edit what we say before we post it

and many things that are discussed on CD are from a position of personal experience, opinion, background…

so unless someone states, “I talked about this with the rest of my team, and this is how we feel:…” then people on this site should not be taken to speak for their whole team

but as with everything else in life, you would not want to conduct yourself here in a manner that you would be embarassed about infront of the rest of your team.

But you are a representative of your team, be it a good or a bad one.

Others in FIRST will form an opinion of your team based on the actions of a few.

If one or two people offer help, making a part, fixing a control, whatever - your team will get kudos for it and others will talk about a what a great team you are - based on the actions of a few.

The same is true in the negative. You can get a reputation of being rule, being obnoxious, being whatever, based on the actions of a few, because there are many people that will only come in contact with a few from your team.

It isn’t necessarily fair, but it is true, and it applies in all groups (lawyers, to refer to another forum), a particular school, a sports team, a company, etc.