Results or Excuses. You Choose

Vincent Dosumu Written by Vincent Dosumu · 2 min read >

“Please wait, the meeting host will let you in soon”, was the message that was displayed across my screen for what would eventually turn out to be the whole duration of the class. This happened on the 5th of April when I attempted the join a Management Communication class. This left me both worried and confused, an experience that I will not be forgetting soon.

I had clicked on the “Launch Meeting” button on the page, only a few seconds late because I had to put on a shirt and take a sit to join the virtual class to which, unfortunately, I was not granted access. The meeting was scheduled for 5:30 pm. I should mention that I am quite new to zoom, so, I had no idea what was happening at the time. After several attempts to join the meeting room, it gradually became apparent that my zoom application had not malfunctioned, as I had initially concluded. Rather, I was deliberately being kept out of the host’s meeting room, and apparently, for a reason, I was not privy to it at the time. The next step was to figure out why the host denied me access, even though I already had my suspicion.

So, I hurriedly picked up my mobile phone to ask my classmates whether anyone else was experiencing the same issue, via the WhatsApp group that had been created for the MMBA 3 students. It was slightly comforting to find that someone else had already dropped a message, which read, “Hope I am not the only one waiting for the host”, to which I responded, “I am as well”. One of the participants suggested that a private message be sent to the host and a volunteer took it upon themselves to report the issue to him. I also tried to get the “usual host” to intervene, but there was little he could to do help as he was not the host this time. The faculty was. We soon established that we were prevented from joining the virtual class as a result of our lateness. However, I remained hopeful that perhaps, after 30 minutes, the host will have a change of heart. A participant who was initially in the zoom class got kicked out of the class due to poor network connection, and also suffered the same fate. After much lamenting on the WhatsApp group platform, we decided we had no other option than to wait, still maintaining optimism. But as time elapsed, it dawned on us that the host was resolute. The other participants who were unable to join the meeting and I, eventually came to terms with what appeared to be our fate, the reality that we had missed a class hence, our attendance which carries a significant chunk of the overall marks to be earned during the course of the program, had just been compromised.

Despite the pain and frustration, and all kinds of other mixed feelings, I could see beyond his actions; it was his way of making us more disciplined, more punctual and compliant, better human beings even. I was able to arrive at this conclusion after recalling that we were warned during the first class that lateness will not be tolerated. Perhaps, some of us assumed he was bluffing and expected him to be more lenient if we had reasonable justification for turning up late.

Nonetheless, the experience taught me a hard lesson, that we are responsible for most of our failures because if you reflect on the events leading to them, you would find that many could have been avoided. So, I decided that going forward, a similar incident can be prevented by joining the meeting room a few minutes before the class is scheduled to commence.

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