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May 2, 2017

Dubai is the one of the fastest growing business hub with the state of the art facilities available for local and international business. Dubai is an integral part of business world and is leading with innovation. Dubai is politically stable and has strong economic culture and government of Dubai offer friendly business regulations which attracts the investors from around the world. This article will provide you a Compaq guide regarding business setup in Dubai. Before you start your business in a unbeaten economy like Dubai first you need to under the culture of it. Dubai being an international city is a multi-cultural city, people from all around the world are present in Dubai. After familiarizing yourself with the cultural you must learn about the rules and regulations and kind of the business you can start.

Legal structure of business setup in Dubai is according to UAE Federal Law No. 8 of 1984, and after the amendment in Federal Law No. 13 of 1988 – the Commercial Companies Law, and its by-laws regulate the function of foreign business in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. In wide terms the requirements of these regulations are: The Federal Law requires a total local equity of not less than 51% in any commercial business and describes seven categories of business organizations which can be established in the UAE. This regulation explains the requirements in terms of shareholders, directors, minimum capital requirements and business incorporation processes. This law further lays down the requirements of governing conversion, merger and dissolution of companies and businesses.

In Dubai, you are given plenty of opportunities; you get benefits of best economy based on strong administrative foundations. Authorities of Dubai have divided the city in different economic jurisdictions. You can start different types of businesses in Dubai bases on type of business and location; types are divided in three main categories which are Mainland, Free Zones and Offshore. Another thing to remember is that Dubai welcomes foreign investment but there are rules and regulations that must be followed. In order for you to enter in Dubai, UAE you need to have sponsor, a sponsor will take your responsibility. Importance of a sponsor can be determined by the fact that for any purpose if it is business or you are just visiting you must have a sponsor. When it comes to start a business in Dubai you are require having a sponsor, any kind of business needs a sponsor or service agent. In mainland a local resident or a of United Arab Emirates based company act as a sponsor, for professional service you need service agent as sponsor and for setting up a free zone business you also need a sponsor, in this case free zone acts as your sponsor.

Business setup in Dubai mainland requires you to have a valid license issued by the administrative authority. The name of the authority is Dubai Economic Development (DED); it is a government agency responsible for issuing the business licenses. Renewal of the license, cancellation and up-gradation are also handled by Dubai Economic Development (DED). To ease the investors Dubai Economic Development (DED) operates for different localities, thought scrutiny process of the application is strict but department ensures the quick application processing. In Dubai mainland, Dubai Economic Development (DED) issues four types of licenses, commercial, professional service, Branch office and industrial license.

To setup your business in Dubai mainland under commercial license you are by law mandated to have the help from local UAE resident which is also called local sponsor. Local sponsor is by law hold the 51% shares of your business and you will hold only 49% of shares. However you are given full administrative rights. You can draw contracts with local sponsor and allocate a yearly fee for being a sponsor. Local sponsor sometimes work as silent partners. Local sponsor can be an individual or it can be a UAE based company or group.

However, if you are setting up a business which involve professional services you don’t need to have a local sponsor, in that case you only need a service agent. Service agent works on your behalf and helps you deal with the local administrative authorities to start your business. You are allowed to hold 100% of your professional business and service agent will only be paid once for the service he offered.

Free zones are special economic zones in Dubai which are specially designed to attract the foreign investment. Free zone based business are fully owned by the investor and there are plenty of options to choose with. Every free zone in Dubai has a governing authority or free zone authority. For business setup in Dubai you would need deal with the free zone authority. You may be asked by the authority to provide different legal documents before you finally give the go ahead in form of license by that authority.

Free zone offers different attractive options for foreign investors such as you are given 100% of ownership of your business. There are many options free of tax you can avail like no personal income tax, corporate tax exemptions. There are different types of business setup options in Dubai free zones like you can start of your business enterprise as a limited liability company or service provider organizations, there are different licensing options. Business setups in free zones are allowed to perform international trades. When time comes you can easily wind your business. There is less paper work involved when it comes to end your business from a free zone.

Offshore is another type of business setup offered in Dubai and has been very famous. Offshore means a business entity setup outside of the resident country in an offshore jurisdiction. Dubai offshore jurisdiction provides number of benefits to your business in terms of asset protection, tax optimization and business expansion. Businesses setup in Dubai offshore jurisdiction must abide the offshore companies rules and regulations and is not allowed to trade inside the offshore jurisdiction.

To sum up, after making decision with the kind of business you are willing to start in Dubai you need to deal with the concerned authority. The best way is to hire a professional help. You will be able to find number of consulting firms who are willing to help you deal with the paper work and the authorities. You will be asked by regulating authorities to provide different documents and submit paper work.

Here are few steps you may follow, first of all do research and decide the type of business you are willing to embark, choose jurisdiction and follow through. It is recommended to get the help from a professional when it comes to business setup in Dubai. Ready your paper work for the licensing and get a guide on licensing terms and conditions as there are certain activities you are allowed and certain activities you are not allowed to perform. There are license you can choose which allows multiple business activities.

Source by Brenda Cagara

May 2, 2017 0 comment
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Businesses are very good at changing behaviour.

They have to be to survive. They have to change customers’ behaviour to make a sale. They have to change new staff members’ behaviour to make their work productive, and consistent with the business objectives and culture. They have to change suppliers’ behaviour to obtain the resources they need when and where they need them. The primary function of all managers is to change the behaviour of people and they use many techniques to achieve this.

If you accept this proposition, read on to explore the way your selection of KPIs influences the behaviour of your company. I have included a very insightful contribution from Andrew Gastaldello from the Linked In group ‘RMIT Alumni’. My thanks go to Andrew for permission to include his thoughts in this article.

What you measure is what you get.

  • Measure sales revenue, and you will get lots of sales, but the profitability of those sales is likely to decline, particularly if the salesperson can influence price.
  • Measure production volume and it will rise, often at the expense of quality.
  • Measure quality of service and watch service productivity decline.
  • Measure individual performance once a year in the dreaded performance review and watch morale decline and resentment rise.
  • Measure everything and watch confusion grow and focus get lost as the latest issue becomes the target for the month.

Your measures have to send the right signals to your staff, if you want to see the right behaviour.

Most managers can track 3-5 KPIs easily.

If you try to track too many performance measures your attention will wander. You are likely to become distracted by the latest incident, and you will probably be able to find a performance measure that appears to explain the cause.

The MD introduced me to his Marketing Manager with the words ” I keep him very busy fighting fires.” I thought, but avoided saying “If you need to put out fires hire a firefighter, and let the Marketing Manager do his job.” A year later the company was in receivership. Coincidence?

The most important question is “What are the 3,4 or 5 measures that really guide management and staff behaviour to achieve their targets and contribute to the whole business performance.

Do these measures for a department link to and reinforce the measures for other departments?

Alternatively do they teat the departments as a single entity to be optimised and having no effect on the performance of other departments?

Selection of these performance measures for any function needs to consider the whole business system if you want to avoid conflicting goals and destructive competition. You need a set of KPIs that make a measurable contribution to business return on funds, not just achieve departmental targets.

If you develop a KPI model that covers the whole business you will find that, for each function, there will be a small number of KPIs that exert powerful leverage over business performance. You will be able to see how a small change in a KPI in a remote function of the business makes a real difference to the whole business performance.

Now your KPI structure will send the right signals to staff everywhere, and the odds of getting the desired behaviour improve dramatically.

Involve the team in developing the KPI Model.

One of the most rewarding sights in my work is to watch a team of people from all levels of management work at developing a KPI model on papers. The real insight comes when they need to integrate the parts of model. This is when they come to realise that optimisation at one point is easy to achieve if the adverse effect of handing off the problems to the next department ignores the effect on the performance of the whole system. This insight has a profound effect on their understanding of the interconnections in the business system, and it changes the way managers behave by improving the quality of the decisions they make.

Free Performance Improvement.

I worked on a KPI model for the owners of a hospitality business. It was easy to work out that the key determinants of performance were the cost of labor and the cost of goods in the restaurant, and the kitchen. We assessed historical performance of these % ratios and compared them with industry benchmarks. We found that the industry benchmarks were wrong for the business, far too high, and that the business could operate successfully on lower percentages.

We estimated a target range, based on high season and low season traffic loads, and explained the thinking to the head chef and the restaurant manager. We sat back and watched them change their process for rostering staff to optimise their labor use. Over the low traffic, winter period we measured the numbers monthly and watched the KPI numbers move into the target range, and watched profitability improve. The effort paid off the following summer when the business achieved record levels of profit. The result made the industry benchmarks look silly.

Rewards can be KPI based.

Some would say they should be KPI based, but I would add, “only if you know that your KPIs will drive the whole business in the right direction.”

Your reward systems are powerful motivators,(or demotivators). If rewards are linked to KPI achievement you can be more confident that you are rewarding desirable behaviour. You will actually get a free benefit from setting KPI targets that are achievable for your business, and you can sit back and watch your staff set out to achieve them. You can relax oppressive supervision, and trust them to make better decisions as they understand how their achievements affect the rest of the business.

Now here is Andrew Gastaldello’s insight on this topic posted as a response to a Linked In topic.

1. Most organisations fail to think through the “law of unintended consequences” which occurs when measures are poorly structured, or overly simplistic (e.g. rewarding sales staff on revenues does little to ensure customer retention, more profitable sales, etc.). The “number of seconds to answer a call” in a call centre is another (highly annoying) one – a customer can phone 7 times and each time the phone is answered within the “right time”, the Service Staff are “rewarded” for being “on target”. (What would be nice as a customer is to have my call answered and my query resolved in one call, not 7 – so first call resolution would be a much better measure).

Many rewards are thus based on poorly structured measures, and organisational dysfunction can actually worsen as a result of a poor “targeting”.

2. The concept of “Lean Measures” is far more important as a way of measuring performance, encouraging continuous improvement, and countering or avoiding the unintended consequences effects described above. First call resolution (described above) is a “lean measure”, as Lean thinking would identify the other 6 calls as “waste” (indeed, for certain categories of call type, it could be that all 7 were wasteful from the customer’s perspective at least).

3. Your article rightly identifies and mentions “behaviours” many times. However, many organisations also fail to properly balance both behaviours and quantitative outcomes or results. For example, as long as a target is achieved or exceeded, managers are typically paid their bonuses, irrespective of the “how” of their management style. This problem is amplified by high individual elements of the bonus as a proportion of the overall bonus potential. (There are usually three core elements – team /department/division; overall company; individual). The greater the individual proportion, the more this drives “silo” behaviours.

Behaviours need to be actively managed by means of regular conversations throughout the year, as part of continuous performance management. Many managers lack the skill, the will, the cultural framework, or in turn, the incentive, to do this.

Too often, many of us have seen “performance management” as a once-a-year conversation, that is pitched as an uncomfortable negotiation about a year-end rating, and yields surprises for both participants (“I never knew the boss would hold such a grudge for that project slip-up back in February”).

4. The other recent learning about incentives – particularly poignant following the sub-prime and credit crises – is that rewards can’t be structured on a “one way pay-off curve”. As Wall Street so painfully showed, bankers and traders took all the upside, and let the shareholders – and now taxpayers – take all the downside risk.

The influence of ‘soft measures’.

Many managers worry about dependence on ‘hard measures’. In my experience hard measures, being ratios of $ to activity numbers, is not risky as long as they are well chosen with a whole business perspective.

Soft measures are more difficult because the cause and effect relationship is not measurable. Soft measures can be critically important too.

How can we derive soft measures that work for us and our customers? The best place to start is with a hypothesis, even a hunch, that if a particular level of performance is reached it will provide a major and recognized benefit to customers. This is often a threshold effect; no change in customer attitude until the threshold is reached, then a dramatic change.

We have to measure the correlation between the soft measure performance and customer behaviour to confirm whether it is a KPI. It is not necessary that you build it into your KPI model, as long as you measure and track it outside your accounting system.

I hope this article provides guidance on some of the behavioural benefits of your KPI model.

Source by Michael Taplin

May 2, 2017 0 comment
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A Beltane Ritual (Solitary – Kemetic Wiccan)

In Ancient Egyptian ritual magick, the four directions of north, south, east, and west have their own correspondences just as the Craft does within space and time. These directions can be viewed as a semi-circle line formed from the rising sun (Ra or Re) in the east to the sunset of the west. Egypt’s physical geography represents the North-South axis where the River Nile flows from south to north, rising in the Eastern Highlands of Egypt, and ending in the northern Nile Delta where it meets with the Mediterranean Sea. South is the source of the Nile’s mighty energies and mysticism.

In contrast with the practice of the Craft, ritual usually begins by facing either north or east; for the Ancient Egyptians, it was south.

Kemetic Symbolism:

  • Hapi: North – Lower Egypt — Papyrus plant
  • Qebehsenuef: East – Sunrise (rebirth)
  • Duamutef: South – Upper Egypt — Lotus flower or plant
  • Imseti: West – Sunset

Craft Symbolism:

  • North – Earth
  • South – Fire
  • East – Air
  • West – Water

Aether (Spirit): Isis, Bast, Sekhmet, Horus, Osiris, Ra, Thoth, Geb, or deity (deities) of your choice since we are meshing the Craft with Kemeticism.

It has been said that the Festival of Hathor & Horus was the wedding between Hathor and Horus but took place some time in mid-May not on May 1st. May 1st was the day adopted by early Cunning Folk in Britain. And in some locales, Beltane is celebrated from April 30th to May 5th.

PREPARATION:

1. Dress in a kaftan (caftan) or ritual garb of your choice.

2. Prepare your temple, altar, or sacred space for ritual and/or ceremony by purifying or cleansing your temple, altar, or sacred space by any method of your choice.

3. Gather your offerings and place them on your altar.

4. You will need a sistrum, two candles (representing Hathor and Horus), incense, Egyptian artifacts, and your usual ritual tools. For those of you who can perform this outdoors, then rally and dance around your maypole and bonfire in glee and merriment.

5. Optional – Facing south, cast your circle.

6. Prepare or get cakes, fruits, foods, and libations for your post-ritual celebration.

7. Feel free to vary this ritual to your own practice.

TIME OF DAY:

In Ancient Egypt, sunrise or dawn was considered the most important time of day to perform spiritual rituals and ceremonies.

  • Sunrise or Dawn is dedicated to Horus.
  • Midday or Noon is dedicated to Ra.
  • Sunset or Dusk is dedicated to Hathor.
  • Midnight is dedicated to Nut.

* * * * *

∞ THE RITUAL ∞

Priest or Priestess:

Call upon the presence of Hathor and Horus (both as the spirit entity), Duamutef (south), Hapi (north), Qebehsenuef (east), Imseti (west) by reciting:

“I conjure thee Hathor and Horus, Duamutef of southern watchtower, Hapi of the northern watchtower, Qebehsenuef of the eastern watchtower, Imseti of the western watchtower.”

[Visualize and meditate as you’re doing this in order to connect with these deities]

[Shake sistrum.]

[Light the two candles.]

Priest or Priestess recites:

“Hail to all for your presence and your blessings of goodwill throughout this ceremony, for this is the height of Spring and the flowering of life, O Beltane!”

[Light the incense.]

“I am purified with natron; thus I am pure, and pure are the words which come forth from my mouth-ii-wy em hotep!”

“Goddess Hathor, the gentler sister of Sekhmet, I welcome the love and light you bring and allow it to shed away all pain, sorrow, and regrets for what has not been fulfilled-bring joy in what has been done. Lord Horus, hawk of dawn, may your shining eye bring rays of light, health, hope, and good fortune as the day is renewed.”

[Shake sistrum.]

Priest or Priestess recites:

“O Beltane, O Beltane,I dance with delight in the twilight o’ the Beltane night.

Hathor of the west and Horus of the east,

May I awake renewed in peace.”

[Shake sistrum.]

Priest or Priestess:

[At this point, prance or walk Deosil around the circle three times, spiraling inward and toward the center.]

[If you created a fire in your cauldron upon your altar, then extinguish it at this time.]

[Shake sistrum.]

Priest or Priestess recites in closing:

“In praise of thee shining Eye of Horus and of thee Great Lady Hathor and their eternal union, Blesséd Be.”

[Shake sistrum.]

[Thank the deities for their attendance and help during this rite; bid them farewell, then banish the circle if you have cast one.]

~ Go celebrate in the Light of the Ancient Egyptian Pantheon, the Lady & Lord ~

Source by Dr. Kheti A. Sahure

May 2, 2017 0 comment
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In the current age we live in, technology has become an important component. Every day there is some new gadget or software that makes lives easier and improves on the technology and software that already exists. Making lives easier is not, however, the only role technology plays in our lives.

Technology is playing an increasing role in education. As technology advances, it is used to benefit students of all ages in the learning process.

Technology used in the classroom helps students adsorb the material. For example, since some people are visual learners, projection screens linked to computers can allow students to see their notes instead of simply listening to a teacher deliver a lecture.

Software can be used to supplement class curriculum. The programs provide study questions, activities, and even tests and quizzes for a class that can help students continue learning outside the classroom.

Technology has also become part of many curriculums, even outside of computer and technology classes. Students use computers to create presentations and use the Internet to research topics for papers and essays.

Students also learn to use the technology available to them in computer and tech classes. This ensures that after graduation they will be able to use the technology in a work setting, which may put them ahead of someone who didn’t have access to a particular technology or software in their own school setting.

As technology advances, students have better access to educational opportunities like these. When something new and “better” is revealed, the “older” technology becomes more affordable, allowing it to be used in educational settings, even when schools are on a tight budget.

Technology has also advanced to help children even before they’ve started school. Educational video games and systems for young children helps them prepare for school and in some cases get a head start on their education.

There are people who may say children are “spoiled” by technology. Instead of being able to add a long column of numbers in their heads, for example, they turn to a calculator. Regardless of these arguments, technology is an important part of today’s society. By incorporating it into the classroom, students will be better equipped to transition from the classroom to the work place.

Source by Paul Steinberg

May 2, 2017 0 comment
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Human beings have evolved as pattern-seeking animals. We perceive sequences of events and we see shapes and objects seemingly organized in particular ways, and we tend to want to find a reason for that often-similar level of organization. We see random sequences around us, and we have devised mental mechanisms that allow us to see them organized in patterns. This mechanism helped our ancestry better better cope with their natural surroundings and potential dangers such as a pair of menacing eyes staring from within the foliage, but did not equip them with the tools to discern when a pattern actually exists and when those patterns just seem to exist . So, we think we see faces on Mars, dogs and dragons in the night sky, or the image of the Virgin Mary on the glass windows of an office building reflecting a distorted image of a nearby tree.

The individuals that learned how to cope with their environment were the ones that lived long enough to reproduce. That way, they managed to pass along important and useful information to their offspring in the form of orally transmitted tales. As a consequence of this, we have evolved as story-telling animals that pass along our perception of reality to our offspring. We tend to create myths to weave together these neatly purposely created shapes, patterns or sequences of unexplained phenomena in an effort to assign meaning to them. We have evolved a belief engine which has given us the tools to look at nature and find explanations for everything, ranging from why the sun seemingly raises every morning and apparently revolves around us, to why it rains, where we come from and where we go To after we die. These beliefs-and many more-are grounded on a long tradition and history in which generation after generation passed them along to their offspring. They cave people comfort and sometimes helped them survive by making other people aware of dangerous animals or places. Most importantly, they created a sense of community for those people that shared the same beliefs, so making them stronger as a group in the face of a hostile environment.

The beliefs held by those people better adapted to stay alive until they had offspring were the beliefs that in turn survived. Since people like to tell and hear stories, they told them to other people around the fire and taught them to their offspring, who in turn told them to their own offspring. Some of those beliefs were instrumental in their survival. The collective set of practical ideas together with beliefs in the supernatural in these primitive societies in time turned into organized religions.

A religion is nothing more than a collective, self-perpetuating delusion. It is the sum of a large array of self-replicating ideas called memes . A meme, as defined by the Oxford English Dictionary is "An element of a culture or a system of behavior that may be considered to be passed from one individual to another by non-genetic means, especially imitation." To this definition we should add inculcation, as memes are submitted and propagated by induction as well as inculcation. A group of memes that "work together" towards a "common" goal, such as a religion, a constitution or a set of social norms such as the "rules" of courtship is called a memeplex. Memes are a form of thought contagion because they change our conventional understanding of human beings as capable of creating original ideas and / or acquiring them, to the notion that ideas acquire people. Because of the pernicious effects of religions, as well as their memetic makeup, they can be considered a virus of the mind.

In order for a meme to be successful it needs to replicate. Thus, a successful meme does not have to be good or useful; Just like a gene, it just needs to be passed along to the next generation. Similarly, a meme is considered to be successful if and when it acquires a new mind. This can be achieved by "convincing" the host to propagate the meme because by doing so something nice is going to happen, whereas by not propagating the meme something terrible will happen.

Additionally, the meme can protect itself from critical thought and reason by claiming the superiority of faith over reason. It can ensure propagation by claiming to be of divine origin (and there before be absolute truth), and by carrying the instructions to help people infected by the meme and attack those who do not. The two self-referential concepts "Propagate me" and "I am the only truth" are thus the driving forces that enable religious memes to infect new hosts. The mechanisms by which a meme replicates are there before by ensuring it takes long-term residence in its host and by creating the conditions for it to spread.

A successful religious meme needs to use some or all of the following mechanisms in order to acquire a host:

1. Promise heaven in exchange for belief.

2. Threaten eternal punishment in hell for disbelief.

3. Position the believer as superior to those who believe in other, "false" memes ("the chosen people", "the true religion", etc.).

4. Create an immune response to contradictory memes by claiming that faith is superior to reason, thus disabling the faculties of disbelief.

5. Establish itself unequivocally as the "One True Meme". Some sort of "holy" book accomplishes this. The book contains a circular self-referential argument in which the book's authority comes from a higher source of universal truth that established that meme as the "One True Meme". Because the meme contains statements that the source of universal truth has approved that meme we can there before concluding that what the meme says is true.

After a meme has acquired the mind of its host, it needs to propagate. It can achieve this by using some or all of the following strategies:

1. Convert or kill all unbelievers by means of a (holy) war.

2. Threaten and discriminate against unbelievers by intimidation and terrorism.

3. Enforce social isolation or even death to apostates. Since apostasy within the community of believers may encourage meme-resistance in others it is especially dangerous to the meme.

4. Encourage true believers to breed faster than believers in false memes.

5. Prevent rival memes from reaching potential hosts by curtailing freedom of thought, freedom of speech and by using censorship.

6. Spread lies about rival memes by use of disinformation. Lies are more likely to be believed the higher the level of disinformation is, the more other memes are demonized, and the bigger ones lies are.

If we were to make a comparative analysis of different religions we would find the aforementioned mechanisms and strategies used in different degrees. The religions with the greatest number of infected hosts are those that have used the most of those strategies.

Religion has been, and still is, a driving force in society and the source of much cruelty and abuse. It has been, and still is, the "opium of the masses". But not every religion is pernicious to the same degree, and not everything in a religious memeplex has a negative or pernicious consequence. Religion tends to teach ethics and morals, which of course is a good thing, but they can also be taught outside of Religion. Historically religions have conflicted with science, with democracy, and with any other form of free thought. Given the fact that it is unrealistic to eradicate religions by outlawing them, as evidenced by the experiment in the former Soviet Union, it is imperative to find other means by which people can be turned away from belief in the supernatural and dogmatic religions.

The solution is a paradigm shift in education. It is imperative to use education in a greatly improved form, assisted by the use of the science of memes. Education today, and in particular early age education is misguided because the system is focused on knowledge and not on brain development and on learning how to think. The current education system fails because it generally allows children to develop their rational capacities in a haphazard way, if at all. It relies entirely on parents to teach children how to think, which is a mistake as parents are rarely equipped to teach that and seldom if ever they attempt to do so. It also leaves the child's mental development to the vagaries of parental mechanical meme transmission, or worse, by religious indoctrination from an early age when a child is most vulnerable as they have not yet come out of their "magical thinking" stage. A child that has not been protected or immunized against religious memes-and most children will be mercilessly exposed to them-will be infected by them and in most cases will be for life. This type of early-age exposure to religious indoctrination is a form of mental abuse.

The education system needs to be radically altered in order to prevent this from occurring and to create a better society. The system needs to be focused in the early brain development phase on teaching children how to think and to make rational and critical thinking an automatic process. By the use of games a child's brain needs to be "molded" to automatically use inductive and deductive reasoning. As the child grows they need to learn how to think critically. Asking questions and approaching presented positions should also be an automatic process. As they mature they need to be exposed to an epidemiology of ideas to learn how memes propagate as outlined above, so they will know how to identify pernicious thought contagions and be prepared to reject them. A child has to be exposed to mathematics from an early age in an entertaining manner so as to prevent the much too late math aversion and ignorance so common today. They also need to be exposed to nature and they need to be taught in entertaining and natural ways how the world around them works. We need to instill a sense of wonder in them at the complexity and beauty of nature. It's important to teach science, and to teach how science works and why it is the best epistemological tool we currently have to learn and understand the natural world. Children need to know that there is never a need to invoke a supreme being or gods to explain the seemingly unexplainable natural phenomena around them. They need to understand there is no evidence of the existence of anything beyond the natural universe, and that there is no purpose and meaning to their lives beyond passing on their genes to their offspring, and that there's nothing wrong with that. Sometimes they need to learn to cope with the reality that their consciousness is nothing but an epic battleground of memes fighting out an intense battle for supremacy. They need to understand that science provides a cognitive framework that can explain natural phenomena, and they need to accept that science has not explained everything yet. Equally as important, they also need to understand that it's all right if there are some things science can not explain.

Lastly, children need to learn the pernicious effects of beliefs in gods, superstitions, pseudo-science and other things of dubious nature. We need to equip them with the tools to identify these things as bad and as leading to many pitfalls. Education should put more emphasis on history, as only through a thorough knowledge and understanding of the causes and reasons for various historical events we can as a society avoid repeating the same mistakes over and over again. Children need to be taught how organized religions, shrouded by a mantle of moral authority, have bought terrible despairs and cruelty to non-believers or believers in other religions. They need to learn how organized religions tend to be autocratic and dogmatic, and how they can not correct themselves to reflect the natural world or changing social conditions. They need to understand how theocratic rule has bought, and still brings, misery to man. They also need to be shown how and why religions clash with science and democratic rule. They need to see that both science and democracy bring new light into man's life, and they need to be shown how the progress from the old autocratic and dogmatic theocracies to the enlightened democracies in which science is no longer silenced has made life for man incomparably better .

Source by Gabriel Wilensky

May 2, 2017 0 comment
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Interested in selling a screenplay? Screenwriters interested in selling a screenplay will need to obtain business management knowledge and an entrepreneurial mindset. After all, you are a creative freelancer that is marketing themselves as well as their screenplay products. You need to have a business mindset in order to make money and be successful as a screenwriter. Firstly, you need to understand the importance of a SWOT analysis as it pertains to screenwriters. SWOT stands for Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats. A SWOT analysis is what you should create for every screenwriting project and long term goal that you have in mind.

Let’s say your long term goal is selling a screenplay. This is a pretty straightforward goal that all new screenwriters have. So you have to ask yourself, “What are my strengths as a screenwriter?” Write down all of the strengths you have that make you a worthy and marketable screenwriter. This could be your writing skills, creative imagination, passion for film, the connections you have and any support system that gives you a leg up in the business. This will let you know what you bring to the table right off the bat. Then what you don’t have as strengths will end up being on your next list, which is your list of weaknesses. If you are a new screenwriter without an agent or any connections, then you will put that on your list of weaknesses. You could also put personal weaknesses associated to your writing skills and personality such as poor grammar, poor punctuation, missing deadlines, antisocial behavior, and whatever else you think hurts your opportunity of selling a screenplay.

Opportunities are something that any freelancer has to pay attention to. As a screenwriter with a desire for selling a screenplay, you will be looking for external opportunities and opportunities that you can create for yourself. Of course, paid gigs are what you will have in the beginning in order to gain experience and build a list of connections. But you don’t want to write other people’s stories and ideas forever. You will eventually want to create your own opportunities by selling your own screenplay and being an entrepreneur to do so. This will give you more ownership and control over your own ideas. Not only that, the profit potential is much higher. So what you want to do is write down all the opportunities you currently have in the business, such as the places or people you have that you know can give you work.

Then you want to write down the opportunities you have for branching out and selling a screenplay. This could include the names of festivals, investors, producers, and connections that you have. You may find some of these related to your strengths. But the difference is that you have to ask yourself questions about your ability to find opportunities. Ask yourself, “Do I network?” “Am I researching all the opportunities out there?” “Am I constantly self promoting?” Sometimes you may be good at these things, but you simply forget to do them for whatever reason. So by asking yourself these questions, they can act as a reminder of what you have to do to seize all the possible opportunities that are out there for you.

As for threats, this is a little different than weaknesses. Threats to selling a screenplay are basically all the possible problems that you could face as a screenwriter. Some of these threats could be lack of funding, money drying up, writer’s block, stolen ideas, and no paid gigs. After you make this list, ask yourself how you will overcome these obstacles if you are faced with them. Which of your strengths will help you overcome these threats? Which of your weaknesses enabled these threats?

How can these threats of selling a screenplay be converted into opportunities? For example, if the threat you face is that you have no paid gigs available, this will give you the opportunity to work on your own screenplay idea instead of writing a screenplay based on someone else’s idea. If your threat is writer’s block, then perhaps you could take a break from writing and focus on self promotion and marketing. This is the kind of mindset you need to have when looking at your threats. And now that your SWOT analysis is complete, you can refer back to it while trying to establish your original long term goal of being a successful screenwriter.

Source by John Halas

May 2, 2017 0 comment
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From sports cars to spy cameras, power tools to wireless power gadgets–guys love technology. Most men have at least one high-tech obsession. It could be the latest gas grilling equipment, a cutting edge fly rod, the newest graphite golf clubs, computers, electronics–the list goes on and on. It’s obvious that guys love gadgets–but why? Here are just a few possible reasons.

The “Wow” factor. Let’s face it: a shiny new techno-toy is cool. From the latest plasma screen TV’s to slender, stylish mobile phones, a beautifully designed machine is sure to catch a guy’s attention. Many gadgets are designed to maximize the coolness appeal: electronic card shufflers for the card shark in your family; sleek Mp3 players and mobile phones that look good out on the town; computer speakers that look like contemporary sculpture. The “wow” factor is elusive, and it’s usually a combination of style and function.

It’s all about status. Cutting edge technology is a status symbol. And even those of us who insist we don’t care about such things get a secret thrill from owning the latest and greatest. Those gadgets cost money, and they send a signal that the owner has it to spare. They also give the impression that the owner is educated, trendy, and plugged-in. Most social species have ways to determine status among their members, and human beings are one of the most complex social species in the world. Techno-gadgets are just one way guys can display their status among their peers.

They make guys feel like kids again. Most guys start their love affair with gadgets at an early age. Little boys love remote control cars, video games, kid-sized tools, and more. A new gadget can make a guy feel like a kid again. Playing with high-tech toys is something that never changes. It’s engrossing, fascinating, and fun–just like it was when he was a kid. Most guys get just as excited now when they’re given a gadget for Christmas as they did when they were much younger. No wonder gadget gifts are a quick and easy way to a man’s heart.

Believe it or not–they’re practical. Gadgets let you do things you couldn’t do otherwise. A cutting-edge laptop can let you do everything from recording your own music to building your own e-commerce business. A feature-packed cell phone lets you check your email, play your favorite music, and even download a movie or television series in addition to keeping in touch with your friends. A well-made power tool lets you build anything from furniture to sailboats to motorcycles from the ground up. Guys love gadgets because they don’t just make our lives easier–they make impossible achievements commonplace.

Entertainment value. Technology doesn’t just improve our lives–it also makes things more fun. Entertainment technology has come far in the past decades, from early radio and television to cutting-edge plasma screens, video games with astonishing graphics, and more. No matter what you like to do for entertainment, technology takes fun to a whole new level. And it’s everywhere in our culture–almost everybody has a television, a radio, a CD collection, a computer, and many other gadgets. Today, even our most simple and familiar toys have been given a technological overhaul: dolls walk and talk; teddy bears play songs and tell stories; and toy cars have remote controls.

The cutting edge is addictive. Once you get into techno-toys, it’s hard to stop. You get excited when you see the newest model out on the market. You read about the new features, you watch the reviews, you comparison shop until the price comes down–and then you jump on the best deal. If you love gadgets, it’s hard not to keep up with the latest trends. No matter the type of tool, the technology industry is making new developments every year. This year’s gadgets have more to offer than last year’s, and next year’s techno-toys are sure to make this year’s look like stone tools. When you’re into technology, it’s tough not to keep up with the latest trends.

It’s not just men who love gadgets. Women are also getting involved. In fact, it’s likely that the sleek, graceful lines of today’s technology, from thin plasma screen televisions to stylish mobile phones and Mp3 players, are designed to appeal to women as well as men. Technological advances have made it possible for us to do things our ancestors never dreamed of. With everything we can do with gadgets, it’s hard not to love them–no matter who you are.

Source by Janette Vince

May 2, 2017 0 comment
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Every telephone contact is important, and training your staff in handling each call professionally and effectively is essential. Telephone skills training should be done in short sessions on an ongoing basis. Refresher training is good for all.

The Objectives of Training

The purpose of training is twofold:

1. To refresh our purpose with Callers, and our goals on each telephone call

2. To refresh our skills on each call from beginning to close

The goal is to clarify the trainee’s focus, and to heighten the trainee’s awareness to effective use of skills on every call.

When looking at the call itself, the call structure is a great method to improve skills throughout the call.

Using the Call Structure to Train Staff

Every telephone call has a structure. The structure is made up of the essential phases or stages of the telephone call from the greeting to the close. The call structure may vary. A credit control call has a different structure to a Customer care call. A complaint call has a different structure to handling an easy Customer query.

It is important that you work out the key stages of your typical calls, and that you use the training session to improve the technique at each stage. For example, what is a good greeting? What are good ways of asking questions? What are not so good ways that we should avoid?

When handling difficult calls, it is really important to make sure the beginning stages of the call are done effectively, so that the whole call is handled professionally.

The Call Structure for Customer Service

A good call structure for a standard Customer service telephone call is:

1. Good greeting. The greeting should always begin with good morning, or good afternoon. Not only is this a nice way of greeting someone, but it also ensures that the first word a Caller hears is positive. The greeting also includes the identification of the Company or Department and the name of the person answering the call. Giving your name ensures the call is personal.

2. Positive first response. The Caller will state their query or request. Again, the first thing they should hear has to be positive. Certainly I can help with that, or no problem, I will be happy to help.

3. Good questions. The representative will ask questions to tease out the issue and ensure they have the information they need to provide help. Questions can often be perceived as aggressive or intrusive. Have your Team review how they ask the questions to ensure they are not creating adverse reactions. A good method of doing this in a training session is to first ask the questions badly, and then ask the same questions really nicely. The group can then analyse the bad and the good to identify the difference

4. Listening and listening responses. When the Caller has answered a question, the representative should repeat back numbers or key details, or respond encouragingly to the Caller. This ensures details are correct, and that there is no silence.

5. Confirming understanding. This is a key stage in the call that is often overlooked. The representative summarises the issue or query back to the Caller, and confirms with them that they have the issue correct. There are two major benefits of this stage of the call. One is that the representative really does ensure that they get it right before providing a solution. The other is that the Caller gets a very positive feeling that the representative has listened and also that he or she understands. With an irate Caller or a tricky situation, this phase is the key to handling this call well, say it back to them!

6. Provide a solution. At this point the representative will offer information or a solution. This is done using positive, definite language rather than negative, submissive or aggressive language. Even if you cannot offer a solution, we can still be positive and helpful. The format for this is, unfortunately we can’t do this, but what I can suggest is that. Ensure you have a positive option to offer.

7. Gain the Caller’s agreement. The effective representative will ask closed questions to gain the Caller’s agreement and to move smoothly towards the close of the call.

8. Close the Call. Have alternative closes for different types of calls. Remember that the close is the last thing the Caller will remember, so ensure it is positive.

Source by Kate Tammemagi

May 2, 2017 0 comment
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Of the four basic English language skills, reading, writing, speaking and listening, the most difficult to acquire is listening comprehension. It is also the one skill which cannot be “taught”.

In evaluations that university English and foreign language institute EFL students must take at least three times a semester, the area which is most critical and the one in which they experience the greatest difficulty is listening comprehension.

What makes Listening Difficult?

There are four clusters of factors which can affect the difficulty of language listening tasks. Here is what they are and how they affect listening comprehension skills.

The SPEAKER

o How many are there?

Is one person speaking at a time? Are there a number of speakers? Do some of them speak at the same time?

o How quickly they speak

Does the pace of the speaker allow sufficient “time” for mental processing of the speech by the listener? Does the language of the speaker flow at a faster or slower rate than the listener is accustomed to?

o What types of accent they have

Does the speaker (or do the speakers) have an unfamiliar accent or manner of speaking that is less comprehensible to the listener? Is the listener accustomed to variable accents and speech types?

The LISTENER

o The role of the listener

What is the listener’s purpose in listening? General comprehension? Specific information? Pleasure? Business? Extraction of critical data?

o The level of response required

What does the listener have to do in response to the speech? Act? Respond? Think? Enjoy? Nothing?

o The interest in the content or subject

Is the listener involved in the content or subject matter? Is it something they want to, need to, or must know?

The CONTENT

o Grammar

Is the grammar and structure in use familiar to the listener? Is the listener able to use or assimilate the grammar – structure used in this context?

o Vocabulary

Is vocabulary or lexis that is new to the listener being used in the speech? Is the quantity of new words substantial? Noted linguistics author Scott Thornbury says, “Count 100 words of a passage. If more than 10 of the words are unknown, the text has less than a 90% vocabulary recognition rate. It is therefore, unreadable.” The same holds true for a listening comprehension passage.

o Information structure

Is the information or material being presented by the speech in a form that is clear and understandable to the listener? Is the presentation order logical, progressive, have redundancies or is presented non-sequentially?

o Background knowledge assumed

In comprehension of the speech, is prior knowledge required? Is any prior knowledge required substantial, highly specialized or technical in nature?

SUPPORT

What kind of support, if any, is available? Support in this context refers to whether there are pictures, diagrams or other visual aids to support the text.

While there are a number of approaches that can be utilized to improve listening comprehension, one important key is regular and consistent practice. An EFL or ESL teacher may also provide a measure of guided practice in developing key listening comprehension skills. Taking these other factors into account, listening comprehension segments can be identified which may tend to cause problems for learners or that have a sufficient number of suitable aspects to make them practical and useable.

Source by Larry M. Lynch

May 2, 2017 0 comment
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PMP denotes for Project management professional and is a well-known accreditation required by any job seekers. Along these lines, an expert individual must know the significance of being particular for advancing in a field. PMP is a well-known certification course. This sort of program has turned out to be a tremendously prevalent course in recent years as they empower experts to make the best utilization of their project administration expertise set and in addition help them in their profession also.

What are the advantages of a PMP Certification course?

Being not the same as other job seekers

One of the greatest preferences of obtaining such PMP Certification course is, to the point that individuals can be distinctive and more amazing than the rest. They will be equipped for showing their capacity to deal with activities much better as a result of the valuable and broad course substance that can help in boosting their administrative aptitudes to an extraordinary degree and also help them to lead groups in a vastly improved manner and handle projects effortlessly. Such an authentication will increase the value of their resume in this field and they are completely fit for being a project supervisor.

Acknowledgment of the ability in the worldwide market

A PMP certification course is acknowledged around the world. Along these lines, a man will have the capacity to demonstrate to officials that they hold the right capabilities to lead a group and additionally deal projects with specialized skills. This course is valuable for each sort of business beginning from Telecom to business administration, as they help in boosting the aptitudes of experts. In this way, it is exceptionally prescribed to get such certification.

Shows the ability to deal with and lead projects

Such a program is perceived all around and individuals with such a certificate will have the capacity to show individuals that they are fit for being a part of the project administration world. Besides, organizations will likewise get an unmistakable thought of their abilities and consequently give the correct position which they were looking for.

Ascend in openings for work

Such PMP Certification course authentication is constantly useful in landing different job position openings. In this way, this authentication will make managers feel that the individual is promptly fit for taking care of a position and subsequently will offer them the position. An administration proficient must be prepared to deal with testing undertakings, and this program will make individuals build up the mentality and aptitude to deal with testing works. In this manner, businesses will be pleased to see such an able representative and will offer them the occupation position.

Institutionalization of abilities

Such a preparation program prepares and creates individuals to experience the business norms and in addition meet the benchmarks that are set by top organizations for their ventures. A declaration will make individuals ready to connect with a substantial occupation showcase. Numerous giant companies make it mandatory for individuals to deliver such an endorsement on the off chance that they need to be an individual from their associations.

An outline of the PMP Certification exam strategy

The initial step of this exam procedure starts with the self-assessment of a man’s own abilities and in addition capabilities. This is critical to be a part of the course. The following stride includes picking the correct tutorial program. There are various foundations that give such tuitions. Before joining programs, individuals must ensure that the association is a valuable one and gives proficient tutoring programs that will help individuals over the long term.

There are additional alternatives of picking the enrollment that will help in the exam. Individuals ordinarily get the approval to the exam following few days of working. Individuals then need to pick their test site and afterward plan their exam in like manner.

Source by Bharani Kumar

May 2, 2017 0 comment
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Introduction:

Much of what is motivating for human behavior is action that serves the ego of the individual. The term as it is being used herein, may not relate directly to the psychoanalytic view of ego which is conceptualized as the buffer between the Id and the Superego, but more of ego addressed to a broader and more universal definition of all things related to the self of an individual. Therefore ego in this writing relates to the individuality and one’s singular identity, which some may consider the foundation of personality.

Society has become increasingly “self-focused” and there exists in many arena of culture a fundamental tyranny generated by the supremacy of entitled selfhood. Some might call the entitled self, by negative labels such as selfish or self-centered, but for the purposes of this paper those labels are unhelpful and un-descriptive in nature. What is clear is that rampant entitled selfhood has created or supports many societal woes and personal tragedies. Entitled Selfhood, can play out in any number of possibilities in the lives of an individual, for example one might enter a helping profession to meet some need of their selfhood and when that need is not readily met through their labor with clients, they become fatigued and overly stressed, which may indeed contribute to burnout in professional service providers.

There exists a natural occurring psychological heuristic which each normally function human being possesses, that makes comparisons and judgments almost constantly while conscious and alert. The foundation of those comparisons and judgments are based in comparisons to the individual self, with those things that support the ego being “good or right” and those that do not support the ego as being “bad or wrong”. This binary mental activity is most often in servitude to our selfhood. Herein lies a danger for the healer, it becomes very easy to apply our own evaluations to others and judge the goodness or appropriateness of their behavior based on what our individual measuring stick might be.

To function optimally it is essential for the counselor/healer to understand and effectively restructure their own ego dependency and demandness, so that they are not burdening others with their judgments, biases and injunctions. Perhaps the most successful way to achieve this release from the tyranny of the entitled selfhood is to find avenues of compassion and charity that do not come with price tags. Price tags are the expectations that are often the companions of the entitled self. When one has the price tag of acknowledgement, recognition, or the price tag of being a savior to others, this makes the helping about the counselor/healer’s ego needs.

Healing begins when the counselor/healer find within themselves the ability to consistently invite the helped into a sanctuary of acceptance, compassion and charity. That singular activity can provide tremendous results even without techniques or skills. This is not a new idea in the field of helping others, but has remained a steady and supportable component of the philosophic fabric of creating healthy change in others.

Moving Toward Non-Egoic practice

The idea of NON-EGOISM may be a new concept, but hopefully it will be a concept that opens the windows of heaven and admits a light and warmth that has been missing in clinical work. In the changing clinical world where the practitioners are focusing more on strengths, and helping clients move through their problems using the skills that they already possess, it is time to look at the Non-egoic models of therapy. It is herein postulated that one cannot truly be strength’s based if one has not achieved a certain ability to be consistent in selfless charitable compassion. Some might say that love unfeigned by the demands of emotional or psychological price tags.

Perhaps a definition of this concept might serve to the reader at this point. On first hearing there have been a number of therapists that seem perplexed by the idea of non-egoic models of therapy, preferring instead to focus on the individual, and therapies that are designed around the egoic nature of the human condition. While it is thoroughly and completely apparent that all human beings are egoic there are certain practical considerations that must be equally apparent. Each individual possesses an abundance of unique history that has embedded particular meaning and value within the contextualized relational architecture of living life on a daily basis. Much of this meaning is in service of preserving the entitled selfhood of an individual. One of the challenges faced when adopting a non-egoic view of the helped is that is counterintuitive to our fierce though false sense of a separate individualism, seeing the entitled self as a unique and separate being from everyone and everything else around them.

Defining Non-egoic approaches to therapy falls into two distinct frames. One frame is the counseled and the other frame is about the counselor. The entitled selfhood which is a form of egotism in therapy has a long and well established history; it is easy to acknowledge that most of the traditional approaches of therapy, other than systems approaches have treated the individual as a unique entity, which is absolutely true. The challenge is that the traditional models tend to attend too little to the relational architecture within which the unique individual lives. Non-egoic models tend to look at the unique individual as an interacting agent with the relational environment or architecture.

The second and maybe the most important aspect of non-egoic models of therapy have to do with the clinician. Many times the clinician’s entitled selfhood becomes an element in the therapy of the individual. Milton Erickson used to compare this to inviting a guest to dinner and then dictating what, and how they should eat. Many therapists want to control the kind and type of experience the client discovers as they participate in the therapeutic process. Still others have set semi-rigid ideas of how recovery and healing appear, and have in the past taken the stance that clients that did not fall into line with their “superior belief” of how it should be were guilty of resistance. This all communicates an interaction with compassion price-tags, of varied value and urgency for the counselor/healer.

Most Human beings possess the egoic view of life, seeing themselves as separate from everything and everyone else. Developmental psychologists cherish the stage named individuation childhood development as a profound and necessary step in one’s ability to differentiate the self from the world. This differentiation creates a totally personalized and unique view of reality, what one might label as a personally subjective reality. This process of individuation is not complete in most people until they finish adolescence. Clearly there are many sound psychological and emotional reasons to see the self as separate from the world and environment within which one functions. The difficulty becomes that in the rush to cherish this egoic separatism a tremendous truth is lost. That truth is that all things are inseparably interconnected; therefore, we are never truly alone. In fact one might argue that many mental health issues are related to this feeling of separateness and aloneness live out in the lives of people who are interacting with a relational architecture within which they fell disconnected or disenfranchised.

In physics, the idea of Presence (heightened awareness of self and environment) is expressed in the theory of energy. In simple terms, the entire universe is composed of the presence of energy in various forms. Each cell in our bodies is a function of energy, each breath we take, every step, every movement, every relationship; every event is an expression of energy. It is impossible to consider that we might separate ourselves from the source of energy. Indeed, even after death, our energies transmute into other energetic forms. This idea is so elementary; a universe without energy is inconceivable and absurd. Egoic separatism minimizes and ignores the fact that while each person might be considered individual, the relational architecture within which the life of this INDIVIDUAL unfolds is an exchange of energy with everyone and everything they interact.

The therapist or counselor that understands the relational architecture of an individual, or at least as much of that structure as possible, will be more effective in helping the individual find recovery, hope, healing and connection. This professional views the relational architecture as a living organism that is in the business of exchanging energy within the framework of an individual’s life. The therapist does not over focus on one individual element of the relational architecture, and therefore therapy will look and feel very different from individual therapies which are highly egoic in nature.

What is being suggested in this work is that it is possible to transcend the normal egoic dimensions of the individual and explore other realms that are mystical in nature. For example, a physicist can describe the mechanics of gravity, and these mechanics can be measured. It is recognized immediately that if there were no gravity, this universe would not hold together. Our normal experience of life is filled with ideas of multiple things that seem solid and separate. We have a strong intrinsic sense of the world as a binary production where there are clearly definable (this & that; here & not here; right & wrong) that encourages the development a perspective that distinguishes fundamental differences in shape, color, form, solidity, temperature, light, and so on. Therefore, when looking at a client it is easy to become deceived by the habituation of all the mental differentiations and distinctions that actually arise out of a basic limited ability to perceive the individual as a part of an interactive system rather than a standalone entity.

The therapist who manages to observe and attune to relationships and human beings as on-going acts of creation can be free from the rigid expectations of what healing should look like. Creation is an unceasing phenomenon. The important point, however, is that creation itself is a process. Generally it is impossible to know the starting point so exploring the mental archeology of a problem provides a limited benefit to the therapist in understanding the current creative process within which clients are involved.

A metaphor that illustrates this point is taken from the work of Rabbi Abner Weiss If we walk into a room with a light shining, we do not know when that light was turned on. Many people have taken the egoic stance that help cannot be derived until it is known when the light was turned on, or the history around the lighting. This does little for the light shining in the room. In much the same way, an individual is operating and has been for some time, looking at the process of what they are doing is much more productive than trying to plumb the depths of their collective histories. Returning to the metaphor of the light; it may have been turned on the instant before we walked in.

Imagine that the creation of the relational architecture works the same way. The therapist is a creator, in as much as they can help a unique individual reformulate the functioning of their relational architecture. Taking the stance that a client is in a constant state of creation suggests that it is never known if the existence of a certain form will persist, or if something will instantaneously take on a completely new form. Indeed, although there are few absolute truths in this creation, one of them is that things are constantly changing. This means that we never have certainty from one moment to the next if the sustained flow of creation will persevere.

The point of this is very simple, egoic focus on the individual thoughts, feelings and behaviors feel comforting and familiar to the therapist, but have limited effectiveness in understanding or clarifying the dynamic creational experience of an individual’s relational architecture. Eckhart Tolle (2005) asserts in A New Earth that one of the greatest challenges facing a person is how he or she transcends the tyranny of the ego and it’s endless striving to be gratified which tends to have the effect of influencing people to look for satisfaction out of themselves, be it material object or something conceptual which they may associate with increased worth, love, likability. Many helpers have been trapped by their ego strivings, looking to meet their needs through the helping relationship. These strivings can absorb attention, energy, effort and distract the helper from being fully present with the client.

Source by Robert Rhoton

May 2, 2017 0 comment
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What’s the product? Is there a market? Where is the initial funding coming from? How experienced is the management team? These are some of the first questions investors and lenders want answered when investigating a startup company, and rightly so. The business plan typically addresses these and other related questions in some detail, but what about an Operations Plan? If Operations is mentioned at all, details are likely to be sketchy at best. Does Operations Management play a role in the startup firm, and if so, what is the role? As we look into the role of Operations Management in the startup firm, we need to address the roles and responsibilities of two key players; the entrepreneur and the operations management professional.

First, we need to realize the truth that Operations might not play an important or significant role in a startup firm. It depends on the type of product or service the company is producing and the stage of development that the company is at. But then again, Operations might play a vital role, and when it does operations management professionals need to be prepared. This is where the entrepreneur or owners come in. It is the responsibility of the entrepreneur to understand the needs of the organization at any given time and the skills and experience that need to be brought on board at different stages of development. Entrepreneurs are often experts in their fields, and tend to be creative “idea people” who see the big picture and can visualize the future of the business. Many entrepreneurs struggle with the day-to-day details of running a business, and many have no formal operations management education or experience. These entrepreneurs need to understand the skills that operations management professionals bring to the table and where and how they fit in to the startup organization (and when). It is the responsibility of the operations management professional, who is at home in the details, to adapt their skills and knowledge to the entrepreneurial environment and to develop the systems and day-to-day operations that will help guide the organization to long term success.

There are significant differences between a mature, established organization and a startup company, and many operations management professionals might not have the skills and experience required to help guide the startup on it’s way to success. If you’ve spent your career working in large, well established, bureaucratic organizations, you might be ill prepared for life in an entrepreneurial organization. The speed at which decisions can be made and changes in direction can occur in a small or startup company can be mind boggling for those used to bureaucracy. Detailed analysis and lengthy planning are luxuries that few entrepreneurs or managers of startups can afford. Experience, gut feelings, and back of the envelope calculations often rule the day. Operations management professionals need to be able to adapt to this environment, and have the confidence to act without the detail and support that they’re often used to.

As for the entrepreneur, how do you determine when and if you should consider a larger role for Operations, and how do you go about developing an Operations Plan? Well, the first thing that must be done is understand just what we’re talking about when we talk about Operations and Operations Management. In a nutshell, Operations Management concerns the processes and procedures that an organization uses to produce their product or provide their service. Quality and customer service are important components that fall under the operations umbrella. For the organization to be successful, Operations must have well integrated linkages with all the other functional areas, including strategic planning, marketing and sales, and accounting and finance. There must be formal integration even if all of these functions fall under one or just a few people.

You have to have a viable product or service, you need a good marketing strategy, you need funds, and you need to be able to deliver the product or service. You can have a wonderful product, a continuous stream of new products, an exciting marketing campaign, and plenty of cash, but if you can’t satisfy your customers by delivering the product or service with the highest quality, with the highest level of service, you’ll fail. Delivering the product or service is in the realm of Operations. The role of Operations will vary, of course, depending on the nature of the business and the life stage of the firm. A software development company in the initial stages of writing code will not need to pay much attention to Operations. The firm that is in the R&D stage of integrating that software into components for original equipment manufacturers needs a well-developed operations strategy. The device manufacturer that is at the stage of transitioning from R&D and prototyping to full production must have a highly developed and highly detailed operations plan in place if they expect to compete in today’s global marketplace. The device manufacturer should have an operations strategy and plan in place from day one, since operations is such an important component of their future success. Even if it will take several years to get to the full production mode, you should begin to develop your operations plan in the early stages of the company. You’ll have an advantage over any competition if you’ve developed your operations plan and strategy as you grow, rather than waiting until you’re ready to ramp up production. If you wait, it may already be too late.

I’ve been working recently with a small contracting company. The owner approached me to help him with his business plan for a new line of business. Although I have no knowledge of or experience in his industry, he understands the value that Operations Management and how it can help improve his existing business and help get the new line of business off on the right foot. The existing business would have benefited from Operations planning and management at earlier stages, but the new line of business will have an advantage by beginning this planning at the earliest stages of development. The Operations Management profession as a whole has a largely untapped market in startup companies in almost any industry. Operations management professionals need to adapt their knowledge and skills to this audience.

Also, as I stated earlier, it’s probably a pretty safe bet to say that many, if not most, entrepreneurs don’t come from an Operations background, so what should be considered in the Operations Plan? Operations encompasses everything from the procurement of the materials and resources needed to produce the product or provide the service, through to the delivery of the product or service to the customer or final consumer. The Operations Plan must address how the organization will perform these tasks. The field of Operations Management is littered with buzzwords (value stream, process mapping), various systems and techniques (Lean Manufacturing, Six Sigma), and three letter acronyms (ERP, for Enterprise Resource Planning, generally meaning a computer system, and SCM for Supply Chain Management). The Operations Plan has to cut through the clutter and simply state how the organization will satisfy their customers and drive profitability.

Some elements of the Operations Plan to look for are:

o Sourcing strategy – including vendor selection criteria and supplier evaluations

o Quality system – how will processes be monitored and controlled? How will authority and responsibility for quality be assigned and dispersed throughout the organization? What results are expected?

o Production and Inventory Management (applies to products and services) – where will you meet the customer – will you build to order, build to stock, or what? What is the production and production control methodology? What are the materials and information flows?

o Logistics and delivery – will warehousing and delivery services be performed in-house or outsourced? What are the delivery channels?

o Customer service – how much authority will be granted to customer service personnel? Will there be dedicated customer service personnel or will it be the responsibility of operations, sales & marketing, or who? What are the expectations for customer satisfaction?

o Integration – How will operations be integrated with the other areas of the organization?

Operations is a vital component of every organization. The role and responsibilities of Operations will vary depending on the organization, the industry, and the life stage of the organization, but the importance will not. Every organization, product manufacturer or service provider, for-profit or non-profit, government or private, must effectively produce and deliver their product or service to satisfy their customers and investors. Operations plays a key role in every business and should be given the commitment that is needed to ensure success. Every business plan should include a detailed and well developed Operations Plan, and every business owner should have an understanding of the role of Operations in their organization.

Source by Steve Novak

May 2, 2017 0 comment
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