• The motto on our team is “student lead, mentor driven”. We work toward having the students lead the team, and leverage the expertise of the mentors. In many respects, I see this as one of the daily jobs of an architect – allowing others to lead and own the project or parts of the project, but guiding it in a manner that drives it toward success.
• Learning to delegate – allowing others to have an ownership in delivering.
• Learning to work in areas where you need to work through influence, not authority (most architects do not have direct reports; they have to work through influence to get things done).
• Learning to be pragmatic – finding ways to balance the need to move forward technically (bringing in new technology) while simultaneously keeping costs down (implantation, operational, …) and delivering on time (you only have 6 ½ weeks to build the robot from when you first learn of the requirements).
• Vision – helping establish a common vision of what needs to be built.
The really short answer is nearly everything I talk about in the book gets exercised when working with a FIRST team.
Just like a real project, it is nearly always a thrill to see the project get delivered.
Mentoring others is also highly rewarding. It's fun to see others grow and see the light bulbs go on.
Thanks for the additional comments!