You’ve helped enough, we’ll take it from here!

  • The recovery from pain feels more gratifying when done by oneself, but never dismiss the helping hand that gave you the momentum to get through the adversity. – TheRhymeRula

“For Heaven’s sake, please stop the Aid” follows James Shikwati experience working and living in Kenya, and how he doesn’t believe that aid from the Western world brings any benefits to the Africans. The sub-Saharan part of the continent has been receiving aid for the past 40 years which actually has been more damaging than beneficial. Shikwati thinks that the industrial nations should completely terminate all the aid. Even though, they have been receiving billions of dollars that have not changed anything. They still remain poor and find difficulties prospering. The aid weakens the local markets and hinders the spirits of entrepreneurship that are desperately needed for Africa to be seen as a continent with promise. While countries such as Germany & the USA keep providing aid whether it being clothing, food, etc… to the Africans and their governments to use, the money is wasted or not used for the intended purposes. For instance, The Central African Republic’s late tyrant Jean-Bedel Bokassa summed up how the money given to him was spent. “The French government pays for everything in our country. We ask the French for money. We get, and then we waste it.” Shikwati believes that Africa can solve its own problems, and stop looking helpless to the Western world. He first points out that Africa has a vast number of natural resources such as gold, diamonds, and oil. Secondly, Shikwati explains that Africans in this case Kenya need to start trade relations with neighboring countries like Tanzania, Uganda, and buy their food there, instead of relying on the world food program. These types of trades can improve infrastructure while opening national borders that draw Europeans which will make it more accessible for other overseas countries to enter for business.  

boy with black stain on hand
Girl, Water, Jerrycan, Can, Carrying, Black, Orange

In addition, he was asked about the situation with AIDS in Africa in this case Kenya. He stated that statistics exaggerate the actual amount that was infected in Kenya. Aids seem to be the biggest business in Africa, and it generates a lot of money off its staggering figures. He states that AIDS is a political disease and people should be highly skeptical. Millions of dollars are spent on fighting against AIDS, but all that money is stored away in Kenyan banks and hasn’t been spent. The politicians are so overwhelmed with the amount of money being imported; they then try to be oblivious to what happened to all the money. Furthermore, Malaria is just as much of a problem as Aids, but people rarely ever acknowledge the devastating effects it has on Africans. Spiegel the man interviewing Shikwati brought up how the situation in Africa can correlate to what happened to Germany after World War 2. Shikwati completely debunked his correlation because Germany was already a highly industrial country before the war. It only destroyed the infrastructure, which had to be repaired. Africa on the other hand needs to take steps into modernity. Africans are perceived as beggars and victims from the Western world perspective. To some degree, some Westerners cannot picture an African as a businessman, which hurts the image of Africans. In order for the situation to be resolved foreign aid needs to pull out and see if the Africans can survive without any assistance. There needs to be an agreement on how the aid should be handled. Additionally, the need for monitoring the leaders of the countries receiving the aid is using the money for the needs of the citizens has too consistent. Moreover, jobs are made available by foreign aid organizations, but they are selective when hiring the right people. For example, it’s unacceptable to hire a chauffeur who only speaks his own tribal language. The worker should be bilingual preferably able to speak English and is required to be well mannered. Shikwati says that some of the workers have affluent jobs, but somehow end up driving aid workers around. This amazed Shikwati and he called it as being “just crazy”. Shikwati at the end sums up his argument with a bold statement about the whole situation that’s going on in Africa. He went saying that the only way to end poverty is to end aid to Africa completely. Africa needs to find ways to survive on its own and become independent, and stop crying for help like a child crying for its babysitter. He concludes by saying “Africa should stand on its own two feet”. This emphatic statement challenges African leaders in a country like Kenya to step up and bring change, and not to wait for a hand to feed them.

silhouette of children

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        

The Conditioning : An Analysis of “Condition for Knowledge by Robert Nozick

Conditions for Knowledge

Conditions for Knowledge by Robert Nozick analyzes the conditions of knowledge that are sufficient and necessary for propositional knowledge. He uses two letters to express each argument. Those two letters are “S” and “P”. “S” refers to the subject of the argument, while “P” is the proposition. The three conditions of knowledge are the following Truth, Justified (Evidence), and Belief. Once all three conditions are congruent, knowledge is, therefore, a “True Justified Belief”. He claims that S knows that P if and only if P follows a criterion. For instance, P is true therefore S believes that P is. However, if P weren’t true S wouldn’t believe P. Lastly if P is true, S would believe that P is in fact. When the 3rd and 4th criteria are fulfilled S’s belief is said to “track the truth”. One example he uses can help bring a better understanding. Suppose that S believes that (P): someone in the office owns a ford. Based on this belief supposedly a coworker named Brown owns the ford. However, it is not Brown who owns the ford but it is Jones, another coworker. So S would have failed to satisfy the subjunctive condition because if P weren’t true S wouldn’t believe P, but it would continue to believe (P, someone in the office owning a ford) even if Jones didn’t own the ford. The conditions of knowledge seem to follow the critical philosophy criteria, because there isn’t always a certainty to all the facts, definitions, etc.… Also, since there isn’t much certainty, skepticism can arise even if there is much analysis.

woman in dress statue in grayscale photography

So, what is it you would say you do here?

  • Hello readers, in this post I want to share a case study I wrote 5 years ago during my college days in one of Management classes. It’s a case study based of Mike judge’s film Office Space and a fictional pizzeria called “Perfect Pizzeria”. I was to compare and come up with a solution to both businesses ‘ management styles. If you haven’t seen the film I recommend that you do because it’s a funny film. If you have any comments feel free to leave them and add a like if you enjoyed reading this. Thank you.

The film Office Space is a satirical perspective of working in an office and it demonstrates many issues that cause the situation to unfold in a manner that’s funny to the audience, but in all seriousness, it shows how this does exist in certain workplaces. Furthermore, from the beginning the one issue that’s apparent and presented immediately is the dysfunctional communication between peter and two out of the eight bosses shown on screen Lumbergh and Portwood. They ask if he completed the cover sheets for the sacred TPS reports, but the way they ask him about it and the way they talk to him is in a dull, condescending, and uninterested tone. This scene exemplified the barriers that disrupt the communication between Peter and his Bosses. As the film numerous other issues are presented such as poor organizational structure, lack of motivation due to the employees not having a rapport with their bosses which would therefore lead to pervasive demotivation. However, Peter changes the situation to his benefit and eventually influences his coworkers and takes a somewhat of leadership role later on in the film when he comes to a realization that his job isn’t ideal for him, and finds a something that motivates him that can damage initech from the inside.  

Having said that the lack of communication was the first problem, the way things are being communicated is causing the most frustration and confusion in Initech. Not to mention the things the supervisors are communicating with peter eventually become repeated ad nauseum and he never gets the opportunity to explain himself. If management communicated honestly with the employees, and practiced active listening the employees at initech would feel more valued and their motivation will improve since they know what to expect from their supervisors. In addition, there are many communication contexts and barriers in the film that causes Peter and his coworkers to disengaged and annoyed, and after a while become rebellious. First, the one rich channel of communication that’s present is the face-to-face interactions that begins the film between Peter and Lumbergh, but the only way for face-to-face communication to be effective is for the sender and receiver to be in sync. Additionally, the constant interruptions and selective listening from Lumbergh and Portwood causes Peter to lose motivation because he doesn’t have the rapport he would like with his supervisors and since he doesn’t have a direction or know how he can improve to get the cover sheets for the TPS done on time.  In regards to this, Peter experiences relation testing in terms of when Lumbergh asks him to come in on the weekend, and starts then he starts to ignore and neglect his work in spite of him and other bosses. Meanwhile, he discloses his dissatisfaction with his job, and how idiotic management was to Joanna a girl from a restaurant he went to. He tells her doesn’t intend to quit, but not show up anymore. In the following paragraph this situation will explain how Peter took a leadership role by influencing, gaining trust, and motivating his coworkers to ally themselves to achieve common goal. On the other hand, Joanna finds the things Peter says about his job true to her.  

The issue at Initech enters an interesting point in the film when two consultants named Bob are brought in to lay off workers who are meeting the standards. At this point of the film Peter could care less about his job and just showed up to work in casual attire for the interview, and he didn’t withhold anything to the Bob’s. From this scene the audience understands why he lacks the motivation to do his job is simply doesn’t care about the work especially the vague TPS reports his supervisors. He lets them know that his activity measure only last 15 mins a week, and for the rest of the week he pretends he’s working just to not be hassled from his supervisors. Equally important, what’s ironic about this scene is the effective communication between Peter and the Bob’s which is nonexistent with his supervisors. They show active listening without deflecting and give him the utmost respect by offering him a promotion in spite of Peter telling them everything he doesn’t do at work.  

After the meeting with the Bob’s, Peter became motivated to set his sights on planning a scheme by gathering his coworkers Samir and Michael whom jobs were on the line, and infect the company’s accounting system with a virus so they can steal money by taking fractions of the company’s profits by small quantities in this case pennies. At this point Peter plans the scheme while Samir and Michael (followers) agree to be a part of it, so they get back at the supervisors. As the process to bug the accounting systems at Initech gets underway, the leadership style that can be depicted is achievement -orientated leadership and participative leadership. Reason being is that the task required strategic planning since it would be a challenging task, and there would be a high risk if they were caught. One quality that Peter has is charisma since he was the only one out of his coworkers to challenge management. For instance, his ability to charm the Bobs while feeling nonchalant from the beginning of the interview, to attracting Joanna by telling her how he hates his job which lead to him gaining the confidence to do whatever he wanted, really signifies his purpose to grow while feeling in control.  On the other hand, to reiterate a previous point he has the ability to influence Samir and Michael to join his plan, and later with Joanna, who became fed up with her supervisor telling her to wear the mandatory flairs on her uniform. With regards to this, there are two leadership styles that best represents the situation as a whole is Bass transactional leadership. This type of leadership is based on self-interest, and through exchanges both the leaders and followers will get what they want by attaining behaviors and outcomes. In contrast, the transformative style is present. In this construct, the leaders support their followers and set high expectations for them while having them feel that secure about their membership in the team. For example, all three of them support each other to get the best outcome out of the plan, and Peter has high expectations that Michael will get him the floppy disks and know the timetable on how long they’ll have to wait to see the results. Alternatively, a contingent reward (money transferred into their bank accounts) was agreed upon once the plan was materialized. However, not every plan goes according to plan, and this definitely was the case for these three because they did steal all the company’s savings, but Peter and his coworkers were afraid if management found out they would all lose their jobs.  

Given these points, management at Initech is a disaster due to the mediocre ways the supervisor’s communication to their employees. This led confusion, uninterested employees, and demotivation to do any work for their supervisors who cannot express what the objectives are, and the demanding expectations such as having Peter come to work on weekends. Most importantly, communication is such as nuisance for the managers that when the Bob’s interview Lumbergh and Portwood they were asked why Milton was still employed even though, he was laid off five years ago, but still receiving paychecks. This example, demonstrated that the managers didn’t have the decency to inform Milton that he was laid off, and that the Bobs had to correct their negligent behavior by fixing the glitch. The Bobs understand the Lumbergh has legitimate power, but even he doesn’t put the effort into the TPS that he makes his employees do so there is some hypocrisy. He expects Peter to get the cover sheets for the TPS reports done on time, but it’s unknown what his duties are as a manager. This is reminiscent with the manager at perfect pizzeria.  

In closing, even though this a fictional story and company, my recommendation would be for Initech to lose the eight bosses that peter has, and hire one manager that all employees report. Reason being is that all of have the same agenda and it’s an inconvenience for Peter to be reminded that he hasn’t done his work right. Conversely, like in perfect pizzeria management needs training or some type of orientation to improve their communication skills and ways they can gain the trust and commitment from employees. If all those three things are achieved performance and motivation will reflect in their work   

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