Business proposal

 

Introduction

Problem Statement

On behalf of the company, we are currently undertaking a project for Terrapin Control system, a major client of this company, which was scheduled to last for 15 weeks. We have already covered 7 weeks, but the last four weeks have been marred by frequent power outages, consequently degrading most of our tests. As a result, we have found ourselves two days behind schedule, with no provision for additional time to see the project through, as each day spent past the prescribed deadline will see the company incur a $1,000 penalty.

Proposal

To prevent future power outages from affecting and degrading our tests, we reckon that we need an alternative source of energy, which will automatically start up in the event of a power outage. Below are the available back up sources of energy which suffice the energy strength needed for the oven and the freezer in which our tests are conducted. Company analysts have narrowed down to two alternative sources of energy which would best serve our current needs. The strength specifications of the power supply for the oven should be 240 volts, 60Amp, while those of the freezer should be 120 volts, 40Amp. We need two backup systems, one for the freezer, and one for the oven.

 

Alternative power supplies

There is a broad division of alternative power supplies. The company analysts mandated us to make a choice among these energy sources: line-frequency also known as conventional power supply, switched-mode power supply, uninterruptible power supplies and on-machine power supplies. These are the devices best suited to addressing the problem at hand, but we have to pick one energy source for both devices. The electrical supply circuit selected must conform to all national and local electrical codes. We hereby analyze the available alternative energy sources before giving a recommendation on which one we expect the company to avail with us.

Uninterruptible Power Supplies

These are generally used to provide emergency power to a load in the event of the failure of the input power source, which in most cases is the mains power. It provides a near-instantaneous protection from input power outages by means of diesel generators. The runtime of most uninterruptible power supplies is less than 30 minutes, which can only allow the proper shutting down of the equipment. This is therefore not feasible for the project.

 

Line frequency/ convectional power supply

This is considered a relatively simple design meant to act as a medium for low DC power voltages. Should the line frequency power supply be faced with high current, it becomes increasingly bulky, and there ought to be the need to deploy large frequency transformers meant to synchronize the electronic regulation circuits. This power supply is sometimes referred to as linear. However, it has been termed as a misnomer due to the conversion of AC voltage to DC is non-linear (Basso, 2001).

The switched-mode power supply

This is a small, complex but very efficient power supply. This power supply sees the AC being directly rectified. The latter is then filtered in order to acquire a DC voltage. Essential to this study, it should be noted that switching occurs at extremely high voltages and frequencies ranging from 10 kHz-1MHz. In essence, there is the enablement of a technician to use transformers while filtering various capacitors of different sizes (Brown, 2010).

Such perspectives lead to advantages of using the switched-mode power supplies as opposed to linear frequency power supply. It is cheaper to install and maintain than the line frequency power supply.

On-Machine Power Supplies

These are resistant to harsh environmental conditions as they are vacuum encapsulated in potting material, a strategy that helps in providing resistance to shock, humidity, as well as vibration. They are used to minimize voltage drop in the event of a line loss. Their design allows them to be directly mounted on the machines with no enclosure required. They are, however, pretty unreliable in the event of power outages, therefore not feasible for the current project.

On-site technician

There was also the suggestion of the employing the services of an on-site technician who would be present at night rather than buying or leasing alternative energy sources, but it is imperative to note that the presence of a technician will not prevent a power loss, hence cannot prevent the degradation of the project.

Recommendation

From the analysis above, the switched mode power supply is preferred over the linear frequency power supply due to the safety measures associated with the system. Its advantages outnumber those of the linear frequency power supply. For instance, the switched mode power supply has a feature known as crowbar circuit which protects all users from harm. It also protects the device from short circuits, if there should be abnormal power detections.

The Costs Involved

This involves a direct choice between buying completely new equipment and leasing power supply equipment. Although it is cheaper than the linear frequency power supply, the switched mode system is by all means expensive to install and maintain, considering the fact that it may no longer be needed after the completion of the current project. Leasing the system for a period of eight weeks would be more feasible for the company in the long run. The cost of buying a new switched mode power supply system runs up to $46,400, without installation and maintenance costs while the monthly cost of leasing the system is slightly below the $15,000 mark. Since it is needed for just eight weeks, which adds up to two months, the cost of leasing will approximate to $30,000. This is $16,600 less than the cost of buying a new system. Leasing the system, therefore, is more economical than buying one.

Conclusion

It is hoped that this system will be availed to our engineers on the ground to ensure timely completion of the project, while avoiding unnecessary fines to the company. A lot of consideration has been put to all the listed alternative sources, plus many others, before the switch-mode power supply system was picked. The provision of this device will enable the team to continue with the experiments, which will warrant the timely completion of the project, which will enhance the company’s corporate image. Thank you in advance.

References

Basso, C. P. (2001). Switch-Mode Power Supply Spice Cookbook. Washington: McGraw-Hill Professional.

Brown, M. (2010). Power Supplies Cookbook. Phoenix: Newnes.

 

 

Advertisements

application

 

 

Why I am Interested in Investment Banking

I have great deal of passion in investment banking on the premise that the industry holds great prospect to attaining my life goals. I truly believe that investment banking is one of the challenging industries in the global economy, and being in such working environments has been my desire. Investment industry offers a vast range of challenging opportunities therefore working some firms operating in the industry would help me gain the appropriate business knowledge and skills that I will use in future after retiring. Joining the industry presents opportunities through which I can learn different knowledge, skills and capabilities relevant to investment. The investment industry provides numerous opportunities for me to gain good business skills and ideas that can be helpful in the fast-paced and dynamic business environment within which a firm can thrive. Investment banking industry is a high world of finance. 1

My interest of being an investment banker has developed over time. Thanks to improved technology which has enabled people from all corners of the world access information quickly and easily. The collapse of Lehman Investment Bank in the United States attracted my attention. I did research to investigate what led to the downfall of the company. The findings of my research indicated that the company had collapsed due to poor investment in the mortgage markets. Another prime reason for the collapse of the company is attributed to high executive pay during the economic crisis. I only wished that I was among the investment bankers in the company. I have sought far and wide information about investment banking. In the pursuit of attaining valuable information, I interacted with my relatives who have been working in the industry. Their way of life inspired me to working hard in order to achieve my dream.2

Why I am interested in working at M&G Investment

I was initially attracted to M&G because of its fame owing to record of investment excellence and very appealing innovation culture which stretches back over 30 years. I truly believe that I will gain the best possible start to my career by learning from successful professionals within an international environment, using industry best practice. I consider that your commitment to partnership and teamwork will complement my style of working, and will also enable me to both contribute to and draw from the expertise of your team. I value your commitment to professional development, and am keen to maximise the opportunities you offer to build upon my existing knowledge.
Having managed my own business I appreciate the value of good customer service and support, and am encouraged to see that you have maintained a strong local customer focus despite the size of your business. I personally found success by building an understanding of specific client needs, and would like to replicate this success within your organisation by working with your diverse client base. Having chosen to enter the financial sector at a challenging time, I was also reassured to see that you value high professional ethics and integrity, and am confident that I will be an asset to your company in this respect.3

I appreciate the fact that your company offers constant stream of fresh challenges thus enabling me learn or acquire new skills. Working for the company, albeit short term, would enable me access increased opportunities characterized by culture of high performance. I also acknowledged your company’s efforts to accommodate the needs of employees through educational and training programs on investment scheme effects. I am assured that I will broaden the breadth of my business skills.

I am looking for a challenging career which will make the best possible use of my professional experience and my degree in Maths and Economics, and am sure I could contribute significantly to your team whilst developing my skills further.

Actions that I have personally taken to make a Difference to Charitable Organisation (Senteble)

I was raising money for a charitable organisation Senteble to create awareness in my university and the local community. The mission of the charity is to transform the lives of Lesotho’s orphans and vulnerable children who are the forgotten victims of poverty and of HIV/AIDS. Basing on personal experience, I have discovered that orphans and children brought in poor family setups are prone to numerous challenges. They experience very many negative changes in their lives. They suffer emotional neglect long before they are orphaned. Children without parents experience trauma in their lives in the event that the society does not take corrective actions.

To achieve my goal we had to overcome few obstacles, my target was initially to develop a team capable of raising £2000 in a week. As a productive team leader I implemented this by recruiting two teams of fellow students, the first team set up a stall near the student union to sell baked cup cakes and krispy kreme donuts. Second was to dress up in different costumes to gain attention from the student. We had achieved both of our goals by raising more money than we expected in a short period of time. We had also our story written in the university new letter and in the local paper.

I arrive at the decision of raising such amount of money after critically analyzing the future implications of the condition and the impact that the future impact that the organisation could create among the lives of the victims and the society as a whole. The money could be used to assist the victims. In my mind, I knew that availability of sufficient money would be used to change the lives of the individuals in the long run. These monies could be used to fund the education of the orphaned children, and this could positively change the society in the long run.

I credit myself for spearheading a very successful initiative. I organized the students into two teams of 20 members. We raised more than £2000 within four days. The money has been utilized by the organisation under different managements to improve the general welfare of the affected victims in Lesotho. The funds have also been used to conduct campaign on how these victims should be treated in the society. In the recent days, the extended families in the Lesotho communities have become part of the solution to mass orphan hood. The community has come out to adequately support the children.

An Important Decision that I made

I was about half way through my life and I did not know what decision to make. The difficult decision that I was to make is to marry or get a business degree. I could say getting the degree was an important decision, but I could also say that getting married was also paramount to my life. This issue disturbed for a long time. I did critically analyse the merits and demerits of each opportunity, only to discover they had similar weights. If I had not drop the idea of marriage, I would not have gotten my degree course and my life would have been totally different. This is a simplistic illustration of a decision that would have account for the future complexities that could have arise.

When I think of my current life, I think I made the right decision. Education has changed my life and it is a source of my family pride.

What attracts me to a career/internship at M&G?

I really know that deciding where to start my graduate career basing on my strengths is not an easy thing. My dreams of working in a well established and reputable organisation will come true when I land on internship programme at M&G. From the comments of friends and relatives working at the company, I have been attracted to pursuing an internship programnme in investment banking in the company. The internship programme is quite unique than those in other firms within and outside the investment industry, and this is what has attracted my attention and interests. In case I am fortunate enough to join the company, I will be treated as a key member from the first day. I will be actively involves in various business undertakings of the entity. It is has been my wish to work in demanding environment thus M&G remains the only company within the United Kingdom which can enable me realize my dreams and ambitions.

Not only are they treated as key members of the entity, interns are also accorded good foundation where they can advance their specific knowledge and careers. I am also impressed by the fact that the company provides interns with opportunities to explore the management run businesses within their areas of responsibility. This is something that distinguishes this company from other firms in the investment industry. I will be allowed to interact freely with people in all departments, thus enabling me develop a wide range of skills and competencies in various investment areas.

As an intern, I would gain exposure in Fixed Income and Equities among other business investment areas. The interns are established as teams thus providing me with opportunity to interact and network with other graduates with different educational background. I am also attracted by competitive salary during this period.

Outline any positions of responsibility you have held within or outside of your formal academic study

I have held a position of an accountant and finance manager at Unique Former Care Home Hotel Property. Here, I used to carry research and report on factors affecting business performances in the United Kingdom. I was also concerned with developing and maintaining relationships with external stakeholders of the company such as auditors, bankers, solicitors and Inland Revenue. I managed to source finances for debt facilities in the company.

In 2008, I established Parsa Luxuries Cakes, designer cake company and I served as the director. I was concerned with management of all aspects of the business. I performed accounting, finance, and marketing and production management. Notably achievement as a director was winning of lucrative contracts with key business players such as Jumeira Carlton, Dorchester and Landmark.

At the university, I spearheaded a funds drive for charitable organisation to raise money that could be used to help improve the lives of Lesotho’s Orphans and vulnerable children who are the forgotten victims of poverty and of HIV/AIDS. As a team leader, I developed a team to pursue this goal. We managed to raise more than £2000 in less than a week and this was used to created awareness of the situation Lesotho.

At high school, I started science club. I become the chairman and I was concerned with arrangement of club activities. I organized events for raising money to fund the activities of the club. The club has grown significantly. Currently, it is the only strongest existing club in the school.

Further information that would be taken into account when reviewing my application

I actively participate in community development projects. I am the Chairman of Women Finance Trust Organisation in my village. Horse riding is my hobby.

My understanding of the daily tasks during my Internship Programme at M&G

As an intern in investment banking program at M&G, I am responsible for management of the investment portfolio of the clients. I will also be an advisor i.e. to counsel the clients of the company (investors) concerning guaranteed investments. I will be entitled to give advice and guidance to people who want to get start-up with the investment plans. With the aid of the existing investment managers, I provide company’s clients with up to date information for investment platforms. I would advice them on the most profitable business ventures where they can invest their money. Whenever a new investment product is introduced, I am obliged to acquire sufficient knowledge so that I can deliver the right service to the clients of the company. With other experienced investment management committee, I would specify investment objectives and constraints for the investors. This entails determining safety of principal, current income and capital appreciation. It is my responsibility to address ascertains the constraints that may arise out of liquidity and time horizon. Taking up the roles of an investment manager at M&G is very interesting because I will gain in-depth exposure to various front office investment areas and wide business.

Industry-based challenges faced by Investment consulting clients

Current business environment is turbulent, and this is posing great deal of challenges to investment consulting clients of M&G. Most of these clients invest in European single market which is currently experiencing notably property bubbles, depopulation and ever rising inflation. Since early 2008, European Union countries have been hit hard by the recession, global credit crunch and ensuing international slowdown. The deep recession that is being experienced has adversely affected investment markets, a condition that would cause a lot of problems to the clients.

The clients are facing mounting resource constraints due to ever increasing input costs. This has become universal backdrop to start-ups in the investment banking industry. With oil approaching peak output, reordering of economic priorities is the order of the day in many households. Thus, sustainability has become a serious business issue across the investment banking industry. Seismic demography being experienced in the European countries is challenging factor to the investment consulting clients of M&G. This often changes the people live and work.

Professional qualifications that I would like to take

I would like to take Investment Banking. From experience, I have acquired not only sufficient but all relevant knowledge on investment industry. I possess deep knowledge and understanding of how economic trends affect the investment industry. I know how to assess risks, and how to limit financial losses in business investment be it of the company or the clients I represent. My vast knowledge and experience in investment industry would be useful to the organisation because I would be able to attract large number of clients. I am effective in communication and this will enable me present investment information to the clients and the corporations. The stellar interpersonal and communication skills that I possess are necessary when interacting with clients all over the globe.

A time when I have had to explain a complex concept to someone who had no prior knowledge

I was asked by the lecturer to present math concepts, a topic which many considered complex. I knew that the way present my topic influence the way the class would understand it. Before I crafted my presentation, I look at the math concept as if I was a complete beginner to it. Thereafter I imagine what would need to be explained to an individual with no prior knowledge. The first thing I did was to develop the concept clearly on the board. In my drawing, I labeled points I wanted the students to focus on. Next to the picture, I wrote out a sentence about the concept. I went on to explain the concept while I touch on each important point without leaving anything out. Throughout the presentation, I controlled my voice to make sure that I was clear and precise. At the end of the lesson, majority of the students had understood the concept.

Describe a time where you made suggestions to improve an established process

My Father had established a poultry project. However, it was doing well and this disturbed me so much. The genesis of the challenge was lack of an automated food and drink system, and this compromised the amount and the quality of food and water provided to chickens. One day, I suggested that we acquire one such system. My father was reluctant to accept my proposal citing financial constraints. In the course of family discussions I proposed that we could buy the system using family contribution. We did contribute and the system was acquired. Since then, the poultry business has flourished.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Reference

M&G Investments, “M&G Corporate Website”, 2011. Retrieved November 26, 2011 <http://www.mandg.co.uk/Corporate/AboutMandG/index.jsp>

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1M&G Investments, “M&G Corporate Website”, 2011. Retrieved November 26, 2011 <http://www.mandg.co.uk/Corporate/AboutMandG/index.jsp>

 

2M&G Investments, p.1

 

3M&G Investments, p.1

 

Religion and Theology

 

Question 1: Biblical interpretation is a cornerstone of Disciples theology as described by Toulouse and others. Barton Stone argued for the sensus communis in contrast to individual renderings of texts. How credible do you think these propositions are? What ways do you see them forming or informing Disciples thinking today?

According to Mark G. Toulouse, biblical interpretation is the cornerstone of disciple theology. In most of his writing, Toulouse explains that the Holy bible is the first resource that Christian should seek advice from when they encounter difficult moments and conflicting situations. Despite the fact that various people differ widely in their personal opinions and interpretation of the scriptures, most people view it as an important resource for living a holy Christian life1. Like Toulouse, individuals such as Thomas Campbell and Alexander Campbell took the Holy Scriptures seriously. To them the living core of the Christian faith was not only revealed in the scriptures, but also illumined by rituals, vivified in individual understanding and established by facts2.

Toulouse and the other early Christians believed that the Holy Bible is the primary resource that reveals the word of God therefore its proper interpretation is crucial for the salvation of human kind. As the sole source of truth about God, the traditional practices, facts and individual understanding, the bible forms the matrix for its interpretation. Through the lens of rituals and old practices, individuals view facts presented in the bible and interpret it from different perspectives. By advocating for the interpretation of the bible through traditional rituals, the early believers realized that tradition is not a perfect instrument to be used by Christians. In order to counter its biasness, they suggested the use of facts and experience to test these traditions. Via facts, they were able to evaluate and challenge the assumptions made from tradition thus adjusting the basic interpretations of the scriptures3.

From the propositions made by Toulouse and the other believers, biblical interpretation rather that power or authority, is undoubtedly the most formative of Disciples foundations. As Toulouse proposed in some of his major publications, despite the fact that some Christians planed on abandoning all their human rituals for the Bible alone, in doing so, they created a new practice of confessional elucidation. In the past, Christian theology was biblical interpretation which was not written in an orderly or conceptual manner but it was established through exegesis and sermons4.

Unlike Toulouse and the other proposers, Barton Stone advocated for sensus communis in contrast to individual rendering of the scriptures. In using this term while proposing changes in biblical interpretation, Stone brought about the sense of the community bible study. This was more like introducing bible study worship in the community of the whole people of God. Through this, the modern disciples have been able to form an important interpretation of the bible from which they identify with. Like Stone, Thomas Campbell wished that the scriptures were open to the people for reading and interpretation. They both argued that biblical interpretation was left to the people to act as a voice of basis and analysis. The modern believers should realize that just like the early disciples, they are free and capable of formulating their own interpretations of the bible for their own benefit5.

In my view, the propositions made by Toulouse and Stone about biblical interpretation are credible the sense that biblical interpretation is confessional and it stands over complete biblical power. Moreover, biblical interpretation is expressed and owned by a large group of community of faith. Through their propositions, they have provided the modern as well as the future disciples with a vital spirit with which they can use in their individual approach of the scriptures. Most disciples in the contemporary society fail to approach bible arbitrarily6. According to research, this is because they are afraid of doing prejudice to the old yet strong disciple rituals before them. Despite the fact that the advent of historical disparagement has moved the critical strength in directions, Toulouse and the other founders did not necessarily foresee. However, the disciples in the modern society still demonstrate the significance of the efforts and dedications that characterized the work accomplished by the founders7.

In the late nineteenth century the Disciples of Christ implemented a denominational configuration and formed a Christian Missionary Fellowship. As a result, they abandoned the non-denominational code of the restoration movement. Similarly, in the recent past, the Disciples of Christ community has widened its liberty of faith and thus endorsed various positions that differ by large margin from any other churches. They have allowed women to be preachers, ordained women of integrity as leaders, denied the prerequisite of interest for salvation as an essential factor to salvation as it was when the movement was first founded. In addition, they have taken part in unity discussions with other denominations such as the Roman Catholic Church by acknowledging the latter’s claims and rituals. Other changes that they have implemented include beliefs by a section of the disciples which are the denial of the virgin birth of Jesus, participation with other liberal movements in questioning the credibility of the bible, and support of the gay marriages8.

In terms of Christian beliefs and practices, the disciples have always been opposed to the use of creeds by various denominations to exclude individuals from the church. As research shows, it was via the founders of the disciple movement identified the use of creeds and doctrines as an instrument to test fellowship as the basic cause of dissection among Christians. Still in the modern society, unlike many other churches and denominations, the disciples do not have an official doctrinal statement through which they can refer to as an idiosyncratic doctrinal stand9.

As earlier stated, in the early days of the disciples, the bible was taken to be an exclusive, dependable and inerrant symbol of the word of god. Disciples were refrained from participating in any personal, communal or liturgical practices that are not clearly certified or endorsed by the scriptures of the New Testament. Some of the practices in which they were refrained from taking part in include the formation of denominations, use of creeds and terms to recognize Christian movements, and embracing the hierarchical forms of polity and church relations. In addition, they were refrained from formation of any formal delegate church arrangement outside the confined congregation10. To some other believers, the use of musical instruments in the church was wrong as they claimed that in the New Testament, such a thing has not been clearly defined nor suggested. According to research, even today, some disciples will quote a saying invented by one of the founders in arguments saying that disciples to speak where the scriptures speak and remain silent where the scriptures are not clear about an issue11.

Question 2: Unity was foundational to the Campbells and Stone. Characterize ways in which the ecumenical movement of the late 20th and early 21st centuries complements or collides with that unity vision.

In the early nineteenth century, Barton Stone, Thomas Campbell and Alexander Campbell formed a Christian movement that began on the American frontier. The movement, which was later named the Stone-Campbell movement, defined unity as their foundation however, they had different views in terms of theological views. Despite this, they all had one goal while forming the movement12. The focus was to restore the church as well as the unity of all Christians in one single body ornate after the church of the New Testament. As research shows, they all believed that creeds kept Christians and believers from different denominations divided. Therefore, they wanted to re-establish the entire Christian community on the mode set forth in the New Testament13.

According to Thomas Campbell, the church of Christ upon the universe is fundamentally, intentionally and constitutionally one. Through this assertion, Campbell demonstrated his ardor for Christian unity. In the Christian theology, this proposition has been termed as the primary and key suggestion in the Declaration and Address, a book by the Disciples of Christ. In the founding documents of the Stone-Campbell movement, unity was the centre of all their discussion. Barton Stone and other founders who signed the last will and testimony of the Springfield Presbytery of the early nineteenth century, wished that the union be closed and together with other denominations, descend into harmony with the body of Christ at large. They prayed so much for God get rid of all obstacles that have been established to his work including the disunity in the churches. However, they understood that unity could not rest primarily on the doctrinal customary values even on an obvious core of generally acknowledged creed. As they explained, it was rather the ownership and manifestations of God’s will in each Christian that was the vital basis of unity. In the scriptures, the spirit is defined to be love, peace and unity, forbearance and cheerful obedience14.

For Thomas Campbell, the facts of unity in the Christian community lay in the New Testament. In support of these views, Alexander Campbell insisted that the only way Christians can bring about visible unity in their churches would be through the propounding of the ancient gospel and the ancient order of things in the words found in the record and to make no human terms of communion. These views were different from what Stone believed in but just like Stone, the Campbells predestined the system denomination as conflict-ridden. Therefore, to them, the existence of true Christians and true believers is in groups and not in denominations. In creating these groups, all human structures had to vanish just like the Springfield Presbytery and the Campbells association thus leaving only the Christian congregations15.

The ecumenical movement was introduced in the late twenty century by the Roman Catholic Church. The main aim of the movement was to reconcile all Christian communities who have been separated for generations due to varied theological issues. Like many other denominations the Roman Catholic Church thought that the church was the only hope left for the people after the World War II and therefore, by coming together with other religious groups, they could bring change in the world. This would be possible despite their varied differences as they would only act as agents of hope and peace amongst the chaos and destructions that the human race seems to be creating every single day. Therefore, the ecumenism is a movement that aims at reconciling various denominations by overcoming the historical and theological divisions within the various communities16.

As research shows, there are various approaches to ecumenism. However, despite the varied views, different denominations agree that through ecumenical movement, all Christians will unite in a single celebration of the Eucharist in that unity of the one and only one church. In the modern society, the ecumenical campaigns have had varied impact on the Christian community especially in regard with the union vision. To some people, the ecumenical movement aims at taking advantage of the present times and state of different individuals to re-establish a total control over all those who refers to themselves as Christians. As some people argue that, by joining the ecumenical compromise, various religious leaders are bound to forsake the bible and compromise the gospel message in search of public popularity. However, visible unity of the church is the basic goal of the ecumenical movement. Regardless of what various people might take it to mean, visible unity involves establishment of good relationship between different churches. In all their endeavors, these different churches will pray, reflect, plan and act in union17.

Since the ecumenical movement was officially introduced in the late 1960s, various observers have described the past decades as a moment of unprecedented activism. Research shows that different people have understood the term from different perspectives thus creating ambiguous meaning to its use in creating visible unity. While some churches have been able to welcome this gesture as a clear sign of investing more time and energy in defined actions than in mere dreams and visions, other churches have different interpretations. To them, ecumenism is a move by various denominations to bridge the gap that has existed between unity and the missionary of the church and the diaconal responsibilities. While the ecumenical movement is expected to address concerns arising in the everyday life of Christians and concerns that need a Christian response, its growing engagement in this particular area may create tensions and polarizations within the movement if it is not understood or manifested properly18.

In my view, there are various issues that should be addressed before unity can be brought out of uncertainty in the Christian communities. This is because since the introduction of ecumenism, the concept of unity has resulted in confusion and ambiguous interpretations. Despite the fact that the movement has proposed various models of unity it has not created room for the achievement of a common understanding about the nature of unity. Research shows that the models of unity that exist so far are motivated mainly by confessional and contextual considerations. Therefore, since these concepts are not related at all, a consensus on a common understanding should be created among churches to avoid establishment of confusion in the near future. This is because the main focus of ecumenical movement is not only driven by restoration of unity between churches. The ecumenical movement also aims at creating order, bringing peace and justice as well as ecclesiology in the universe19.

Question 3: Disciples live with and avidly protect the reformation concept of the “priesthood of all believers.” This has been and is used as justification for laity to perform all sorts of ministerial functions. How do you understand the priesthood of all believers relative to the defined Order of Ministry?

Research has revealed that the biblical doctrine of the priesthood of all believers is found throughout the Scriptures. In the Old and the New Testament, the doctrine was practiced in the early church as the first century Christian communities had no priests. As early philosopher who supported the doctrine of priesthood for all believers asserted, in the New Testament, the word priest has not been used to define the leader of church services. The idea of a priest to be the leader of church services was introduced via the establishment of sacerdotalism in the third century by Cyprian, a bishop of Carthage. As he interpreted the scriptures, Cyprian assumed that all the passages in the Old Testament that mention privileges, sanctions, duties, and responsibilities of the priesthood apply to the officials of the Christian church. Although he understood that only God had power over all Aaronic priests, his critics claim that he failed to grasp the central thesis that asserts that the only high priest under the gospel is God20.

In opposing the unbiblical establishment of the doctrine of sacerdotalism, the doctrine of the priesthood of all believers advocated for the removal of a priestly class within the church. However, in support of the doctrine of priesthood for all believers, individual such Martin Luther explains that the scriptures are clear in illumination about the position of a priest. Once an individual believes in God, they possess righteousness of God and can therefore have immediate access to God without mediation of anyone. Various individuals who are in support of this doctrine assert that it is a continuation to the doctrine of justification. Therefore, since those who have repented and accepted God have been clothed in the perfect righteousness of God, they are thus welcome to the house of the Lord. Christians should therefore not need a priest since Jesus Christ has created a way to god for all his followers21.

As the scriptures state, the sacrificial death of Jesus Christ at the cross annulled the Aaronic priesthood. Therefore, based on these findings there is no need for Christians to continue offering up literal expiatory sacrifices. The continued offering and performance of all sorts of ministerial duties does not make much sense as per the scriptures. As many claim, the existence of a priest through which believes confess to and use a mediator to God, only destroys the strong belief of Christians. The priest is a barrier between believers and God. In the Christian belief, there is only a single mediator God brought between him and the human race. This mediator is none other but Jesus Christ. Through him, Christians get saved and direct access to God. Through priesthood for all believe, all believers are a holy priesthood who offer spiritual sacrifices as any priest through their faith in God22.

In teaching about the priesthood for all believers, the bible reveals that the church is built upon the foundation of Jesus Christ. The priesthood of all believers is clearly and ardently taught in the New Testament through various books. It is viewed in practice in all the order and functioning of the New Testament churches of the early believers. However, as research shows, in some churches today, it is denied and highly rejected. It is in this matter so critical that to the existence and the creation of the church that the greatest and most fundamental changes have been established especially in the manner through which Christ gave to His church and to the apostles. In many denominations in the contemporary society, only the Pastor or the deacon has the powers of a priest. All other individuals that serve at the church are considered laity. The objective of such a move in the order of the church can be termed as demonic as it destroys the peace and freedom originally placed in the church. It not only robs the great majority of the believers the privilege and responsibilities of priesthood that Jesus left them, but also takes from the church the authority God has as the head and builder of the church23.

Some researchers have observed that in the modern society, the youngest Pastor has been allocated more powers and authority over the congregation than Christ himself. As a result, this has transformed the church from a body of Christ into an organization headed by human leaders. In addition, the establishment of such leaders has also resulted in the unavoidable substitution of human talent for the gift and power of Holy Spirit that has in turn removed the church from the spiritual equipment and power24.

In my view, in the structure through which Christ left his church, the authority is always directly in His hands and the power comes directly from Him. This structure is clearly defined in the scriptures when he placed the responsibility for knowing His will and obeying His Word directly upon the whole congregation gathered together. Whether a priest or a believer, individuals posses equal responsibilities through the different ministries and gifts of the Spirit, and as explained they were directly responsible to Him. Therefore, this implies that each person has a duty and responsibility to know the word of God, learn his will and commandments, and strive to abide and remain loyal to him25.

As earlier stated, contrary to the scriptures of the Old Testament, the New Testament does not use the word priest to define a minister among the people of God. The word is reserved for the unique priesthood of Jesus Christ and all Christians. According to various philosophers, the priesthood of all believers has spiritual, ecclesiastical, and social implications. Despite the fact that socially, the priest belong to the organization of Christendom and have the power to discipline evildoers and protect those who do fine. The medieval division that is usually established between the temporal and the church authorities should be removed completely. Ecclesiastically, it is wrong that the clergy has the sole role of interpreting the scriptures, determining the correct doctrines, forgiving sins and exercising discipline. Through the priesthood of all believers, all Christians are priests and have the right to participate in these Christian functions during service and within the community of believers. The priests should be the minister of the word of God called upon to preach to the congregation and administer sacraments with the consent of and in the service of the church believers. In spiritual sense, the kingdom of all priests can be applied. All priests are worthy of going in God’s presence to pray for others and for themselves and to teach one another the things God teaches through the scriptures26.

In the Holy Scriptures the believers are called kings and priests. This can be translated to refer to their privileged status as heirs to the kingdom of God. As a result of this privilege, they have the ability to create a close relationship with God with no need of an earthly mediator. In addition, they are called priests because God’s salvation is not some sort of insurance cover through which individuals can escape the fires of hell. But rather, by being priests, believers are called upon by God to serve Him and perform offering up spiritual sacrifices as well as conducting the good deeds as priests and kings in the kingdom of God. Moreover, believers are given the right of worshiping God and also have the opportunity of sharing this grace with all other believers and non-believer27.

Therefore, in my opinion, priesthood of all believers is a spiritual privilege, a moral obligation, and a personal vocation. Through it, believers have directly access to God, have an obligation to the church that teaches about priesthood, have a calling in to serve at the arena where other priests serve and have a gift that demands them to be examples to others. This is because as a priest, they have a responsibility to the community and to themselves. Apart from having direct access to God, a priest has to read scriptures, ask for guidance on how to understand it, and tell it to someone and be able to change their lives28.

Bonus Question: Discuss the contributions of the Stone-Campbell movement to the development of 19th century North American Christianity as well as its influences on the 21st century.

As earlier mentioned in question two, Stone-Campbell movement was formed in the early nineteenth century by Thomas Campbell, Alexander Campbell and Barton Stone. The three believers had one purpose in mind while forming the movement. Their intention was to create a union that would restore the Christian groups and reunite them into a single non-denominational union. Since it was formed then, the movement has resulted into various positive and negative changes within the Christian community. Its impact especially to the Christian theology in the past and in the modern times can neither be ignored nor taken lightly.

As the main founders of the stone-Campbell movement, Barton Stone and Alexander Campbell were extremely fervent about Christian unity. In coming together to form this movement, they aimed at restoring unity in the Christian community and creating a single non-denominational group in which Christians, despite their theological issues and views would be able to live in peace, love and unity. In their plan, they wished for a world in which by working together, leaders of different religious groups could take action. In the modern Christian community, more of the contributions made by these two individuals especially after the formation of the movement have been implemented in the twenty-first century. Various churches have not only accepted that it is time to implement visible unity among the religious communities, but have also began the establishment of a new movement, the ecumenical movement, that shall restore unity29.

In the nineteenth century, the Stone-Campbell movement brought together various religious groups who had different theological issues. Its main focus was to create a Christian community that is essentially and constitutionally one as Christ meant for it to be. In the belief of the founders, different denominations only resulted in the creation of division among the believers and were not worth of being strongly based upon. In the present times, the Christian community has the shown interest in the formation of a single union just like the founders of the stone-Campbell movement. They have established the ecumenical movement, through which they aim at bring together believers from various denominations as they restore unity in the community of believers. Regardless of their differences, the believers shall have the chance to bring about change through love, praying together, acting and advancing one another30.

However, in the twentieth century, disciple issues such as visible unity seem to have been centered more on structure of the church than on its theological perspective like in the past.

If the 19th century was characterized by growth through missions, the 20th century is measured by organization – anathema particularly to AC in his early days and certainly to Stone any time – and growth has suffered. Yet other North American denominations have suffered similar declines save possibly for those which entered into some formal mergers, UCC, United Methodist, ELCA [Lutheran Church in America, American Lutheran Church, and Evangelical Lutheran Church], and Presbyterian Church (USA) [United Presbyterian Church in North America, United Presbyterian Church in U.S.A., and Presbyterian Church in the United States]. Yet even each of these is currently in difficulty occasioned by doctrinal concerns, leadership conflicts, and indecisions (class notes, 1/19/2012).

 

As research shows, the efforts by various denominations to organize the Christian communities into one have been noble well intended, the energy has created various paucities. Denominations have not been able to agree on the holy trinity, the virgin birth of Jesus Christ, and his physical resurrection and ascension. Moreover, they have not yet been able to resolve other issues that might seem trivial and inconsequential but could be relevant to faith, belief and religious practices31.

Bibliography

Boring, Eugene M. Disciples and the Bible: A history of Disciples Biblical Interpretation in North America. Missouri: Chalice Press, 1997.

Campbell, Thomas, and Samuel Carter r Hall. New Monthly Magazine, Volume 6. New York: Princeton University, 2009.

Eastwood, Cyril. The Priesthood of All Believers: An Examination of the Doctrine from the Reformation to the Present Day. Eugene, Oregon, United States: Wipf & Stock Publishers, 2009.

Montague, George T. Understanding The Bible: A Basic Introduction to Biblical Interpretation. New York: Paulist Press, 2007.

Olbricht, Thomas H, Hans Rollmann, and Thomas Campbell. “The Quest for Christian Unity, Peace, and Purity in Thomas Campbell’s Declaration and Address: Text and Studies.” Historical Dictionaries of Religions, Philosophies, and Movements, 2000: 129-199.

Richesin, Dale L, and Larry D. Bouchard. Interpreting Disciples: Practical Theology in the Disciples of Christ. Fort Worth, TX 76109, USA: TCU Press, 1987.

Rodriguez, Milt. The Priesthood of All Believers. Illinois: The Rebuilders, 2004.

Schreiner, Peter. Holistic Education Resource Book: Learning and Teaching in an Ecumenical Context. Münster, Germany: Waxmann Verlag, 2005.

Shurden, Walter B. “Priesthood of All Believers.” Proclaiming the Baptist vision 1 (Smyth & Helwys Publication).

Toulouse, Mark G. Joined in Discipleship: The Shaping of Contemporary Disciples Identity. Missouri, United States: Chalice Press, 1997.

 

 

1 Class notes, Lectures for Day 2 1/10/2012.

2Toulouse, Mark G. Joined in Discipleship: The Shaping of Contemporary Disciples Identity. Missouri, United States: Chalice Press, 1997.

 

3Montague, George T. Understanding The Bible: A Basic Introduction to Biblical Interpretation. New York: Paulist Press, 2007.

4Campbell, Thomas, and Samuel Carter r Hall. New Monthly Magazine, Volume 6. New York: Princeton University, 2009.

5Boring, Eugene M. Disciples and the Bible: A history of Disciples Biblical Interpretation in North America. Missouri: Chalice Press, 1997.

 

6 Class notes, Lecture Day 2 1/10/2012.

7Boring, Eugene M. Disciples and the Bible: A history of Disciples Biblical Interpretation in North America. Missouri: Chalice Press, 1997.

 

8Montague, George T. Understanding The Bible: A Basic Introduction to Biblical Interpretation. New York: Paulist Press, 2007.

9Toulouse, Mark G. Joined in Discipleship: The Shaping of Contemporary Disciples Identity. Missouri, United States: Chalice Press, 1997.

10 Class notes, Lecture Day 3, 1/11/2012.

11Boring, Eugene M. Disciples and the Bible: A history of Disciples Biblical Interpretation in North America. Missouri: Chalice Press, 1997.

 

12Boring, Eugene M. Disciples and the Bible: A history of Disciples Biblical Interpretation in North America. Missouri: Chalice Press, 1997.

13 Class notes, Lecture Day 2 1/10/2012

14 Toulouse, Mark G. Joined in Discipleship: The Shaping of Contemporary Disciples Identity. Missouri, United States: Chalice Press, 1997.

15 Olbricht, Thomas H, Hans Rollmann, and Thomas Campbell. “The Quest for Christian Unity, Peace, and Purity in Thomas Campbell’s Declaration and Address: Text and Studies.” Historical Dictionaries of Religions, Philosophies, and Movements, 2000: 129-199.

 

16 Class Notes, lecture Notes Day 3 1/11/2012

17Richesin, Dale L, and Larry D. Bouchard. Interpreting Disciples: Practical Theology in the Disciples of Christ. Fort Worth, TX 76109, USA: TCU Press, 1987

 

18Richesin, Dale L, and Larry D. Bouchard. Interpreting Disciples: Practical Theology in the Disciples of Christ. Fort Worth, TX 76109, USA: TCU Press, 1987

19 Class Notes, Lecture Day 3 1/11/2012

20Rodriguez, Milt. The Priesthood of All Believers. Illinois: The Rebuilders, 2004.

 

21Eastwood, Cyril. The Priesthood of All Believers: An Examination of the Doctrine from the Reformation to the Present Day. Eugene, Oregon, United States: Wipf & Stock Publishers, 2009.

22Shurden, Walter B. “Priesthood of All Believers.” Proclaiming the Baptist vision 1 (Smyth & Helwys Publication).

 

23Shurden, Walter B. “Priesthood of All Believers.” Proclaiming the Baptist vision 1 (Smyth & Helwys Publication)

24Rodriguez, Milt. The Priesthood of All Believers. Illinois: The Rebuilders, 2004.

25 Ibid.

26 Eastwood, Cyril. The Priesthood of All Believers: An Examination of the Doctrine from the Reformation to the Present Day. Eugene, Oregon, United States: Wipf & Stock Publishers, 2009.

27Schreiner, Peter. Holistic Education Resource Book: Learning and Teaching in an Ecumenical Context. Münster, Germany: Waxmann Verlag, 2005.

28Rodriguez, Milt. The Priesthood of All Believers. Illinois: The Rebuilders, 2004.

29 Boring, Eugene M. Disciples and the Bible: A history of Disciples Biblical Interpretation in North America. Missouri: Chalice Press, 1997.

 

30 Toulouse, Mark G. Joined in Discipleship: The Shaping of Contemporary Disciples Identity. Missouri, United States: Chalice Press, 1997.

 

31 Boring, Eugene M. Disciples and the Bible: A history of Disciples Biblical Interpretation in North America. Missouri: Chalice Press, 1997.

 

phychology

Functionalism is an approach in study of psychology which looks at mental development and behaviors in terms of how an individual adapts actively to his or her environment. Functionalism approach holds that human has the duty of helping in adaptation to the environment. This is what functionalism focus on dealing with the way the mind helps a person adapt to the environment. The approach also focuses on what makes human beings different from one another other than what makes them the same. Functionalists require psychology to be practical other than being pure science Powell, R. & Honey, P. (2008 pp 10).

William James made distinctions between tender minded and tough minded as he classified philosophers. He described the tender minded as rationalistic meaning that they go by principles and optimistic meaning that they concentrate on positive thinking rather than positive thinking. The tender minded also tend to be religious, monistic and idealistic. On the other hand, tough minded have the characteristic of being empiricist meaning they go by facts. They tend to be pessimistic, pluralistic and skeptical in their thinking. James held that characteristics demonstrated by tender minded and tough minded are expression of their temperaments (Hunt, M. (2007).

The James Lang theory of emotions process that emotions happens because of the reaction that occur because pf physiological reactions when a person is confronted or undertaking certain events. The theory holds that when a person sees an external stimulus then there is a physiological reaction that follows. The emotional reaction a person has is determined by the interpretation a person has regarding that physical reaction. For example, if a person is walking in grassy field and meet a large snake then the person may start trembling and the hear begin to beat faster. In this case, the theory holds that the people will interpret the physical reactions towards the snake and make the conclusion that he or she is frightened. This shows that the perception of an emotion arousing stimulus is followed by a behavioral response which leads to different motor and sensory feedback to the brain then interpreted as an emotion (Hunt, 2007).

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

References

 

Hunt, M. (2007). The story of psychology, 2nd edition, California

 

Anchor Books.

 

Powell, R. & Honey, P. (2008). Introduction to Learning and Behavior, 3rd edition,

 

Belmont: Cengage Learning, pp 10.

Essay

Q 1 – What are the different types of marketing analyses tools available for business? How are the outcomes different? How are the different analyses tools important in developing an integrated marketing communication? Provide an example.

Ans – The various marketing analysis tools available for business are pest analysis, swot analysis, product analysis, portfolio analysis and competitor analysis. Each of the tools provides an insight into particular aspect of the business telling about the market position of the company like competitor analysis tells about the competitors of the company, product analysis tells about the success of a particular product. All these together help to determine the market share and size of the company. The different marketing analysis tools are very important in developing an effective integrated marketing communication campaign. Only if first the market is analyzed properly, the IMC campaign will be effective. The IMC campaign has to be according to the needs of the company. The position of the company in the market will help to determine what is required in the IMC campaign. Example : IMC of Toshiba helps to maintain a competitive edge.

(Toshiba News, 2005)

Q2 – What decisions go into selecting a distribution channel? What decisions go into selecting new distribution channels? What is the difference between a vertical and a horizontal distribution channel? Provide an example. 

Ans – Proper distribution is very important for any business as it affects sales, affects profits and competitiveness and effectively measures customer satisfaction. Decisions about distribution are very important as they are long term decisions and involve strategic alliances and partnerships which are founded on trust and mutual benefits. The distribution channels change throughout a product’s life cycle as an effective way to create a competitive edge is to cope up with changing lifestyles, aspirations and expectations along with IT explosion. The decisions regarding distribution channels are choosing between agents, franchisees, distributors, direct marketing, retailers and a sales force; deciding between selective distribution or blanket coverage, vertical systems or multi channel networks, solo sales forces or strategic alliances; and decisions about levels of stock, minimum order quantities, delivery methods, delivery frequency and warehouse locations. While selecting new distribution channel, the decisions to be taken are intensive, selective or exclusive distribution; number of levels within a channel; single or multi channel; vertical or horizontal marketing systems.

Vertical marketing systems involve suppliers and intermediaries working closely together instead of against each other. They plan delivery and production schedules, promotions, quality levels and sometimes prices and share resources like information, equipment and expertise. The system is managed by channel captain and is owned by the manufacturer. Example : Doctor Martens boot manufacturers own their own retail store. Horizontal Marketing Systems occur where organizations operating on same channel level co-operate and share their expertise and distribution channels. Example : Southwestern Bell’s Alliance with Granada TV Shops.

(Encyclopedia of Business, 2nd Edition)

Q3- What is the importance of conducting a post-evaluation of an integrated marketing communication (IMC) campaign? When should a post-evaluation of an IMC campaign be conducted to be most effective? How might a business apply what it has learned from the evaluation? How might this information be incorporated into future campaigns?

Ans – Integrated Marketing Communications ensures that all forms of communications and messages are linked together. In other words, it means integrating all the promotion tools so that they work together in harmony. Post evaluation of IMC campaign is very important as it tells if management understood the benefits and methods of IMC, if proper integration is done at different levels of management, if the communications strategy was clear, if budget was planned carefully and implemented effectively, if the campaign was implemented keeping the customers in mind and if good marketing information system was maintained. The post evaluation process is dynamic, it should be continuously done to ensure its effectiveness. But usually, it is done t a single point of time, when the communication was delivered or shortly thereafter. But there is a need to look at how the communications program impact the behavior of customers and prospects at several points in a period of time which means, it should be done at all times when the campaign is over. The company should hold meetings at regular intervals to discuss about the progress and results of the campaign. Ideas should be brainstormed to come up with solutions of the problems in the campaigns and should be presented in the meeting for a consensus. While formulating future campaigns, all documents containing the findings of the previous campaigns and the discussions held at the meeting should be referred so that the same mistakes are not repeated in the new campaigns.

 

Psychology

What does it mean to be intelligent? Is it just confined to getting straight As at school and filling up an entire wall with trophies and medals for exemplary performance in various competitive activities? How does one become intelligent? Truly, the concept of intelligence is one of the most debated topics in the history of psychology and it persists to be so until today. The definition of the very term itself is very elusive since any potential meaning to be attributed to intelligence may reflect the person’s conception and accepted theory relative to intelligence. As to be discussed in the succeeding paragraphs, intelligence cannot be contained in a unilinear perspective. Rather, there are infinite number of ideas that had developed over time in attempt to provide an explanation and sufficient conceptualization for intelligence. Earlier theories on the nature of intelligence manifest that intelligence is something that is innate to the human being. This proposition implies that intelligence is but a function of genetics and is therefore determined at the time of conception. The most prominent theoretician subscribing to this school of thought is Francis Galton, who propagated the idea the intelligence runs in the family. Incidentally enough, Galton is blood relative to the world-renowned scientist Charles Darwin who himself is credited for the theory of evolution. Galton’s theory primarily turned on the concept of heredity as the ultimate source of intelligence and thus it cannot be changed or modified by nurture. He went as far as advocating what eventually came to be known as the eugenics movement which heralded the idea that improvement of the human race may only be realized if individuals with inferior mental capabilities should not be allowed to sire offspring and perpetuate their kind . This school of thought is antithesis to the revolutionary conception of intelligence espoused by Alfred Binet and Theodore Simon. The two collaborated to develop a test devised to attain a rough estimate of intelligence for children. The prototype intelligence test was premised on the idea that intelligence is a “set of well-developed judgment skills that children must apply in order to benefit from education” . Contrary to Galton’s hard and fast rule that intelligence is immutable, the test developed by Binet and Simon revealed significant improvement in the test scores and learning aptitude of mentally retarded subjects who were made to go through what they called “mental orthopedics” . In the words of Binet himself, these mental orthopedics are directed to “straighten, cultivate and fortify” cognitive functions of the individual. This breakthrough jumpstarted the surge of studies trending towards the nurture aspect of intelligence as well as the beginning of IQ test era. Another divergent aspect between the theories of Galton and Binet relates to the characterization of the intelligence. In Galton’s study, he concluded that people with higher intelligence tend to be more sensitive to the stimuli from the environment. They are more keen and have sharper senses. On the other hand, Binet looks at intelligent as a cognate of higher and more complex mental processes such as attention, memory, perception, judgment and will. In response to Binet’s idea of the unitary concept of the mind, R. L. Thorndike and Psyche Cattell formulated their respective theories which both operate on the notion that “intelligences” are comprised of various relatively independent traits . Cattell, for instance hark on the distinction between crystallized and fluid intelligence. The former refers to the skill of solving new problems while the former relates to the application and retrieval of previously acquired information. For Thorndike, on the other hand, intelligence is the totality of a person’s ability to integrate his skills and function in such a manner as the situation necessitates. His idea of intelligence, therefore, is broad enough to encompass the exposure of a person to opportunities to connect with other people in social situations and the very capability to foster interpersonal bonds as well. References Cianciolo, A. T., & Sternberg, R. J. (2004). Intelligence: a brief history. Malden: Blackwell Publishing. Sigelman, C. K., & Rider, E. A. (2008). Life-Span Human Development. Belmont: Cengage Learning. Sternberg, R. J. (1982). Handbook of human intelligence. New York: CUP Archive. Sternberg, R. J., & Kaufman, J. C. (2002). The evolution of intelligence. Mahwah: Routledge.

Essay (Theoretical Essay & Critical Analysis of the Literature)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Effectiveness of Appraisal Systems in Performance Management

Name:

Professor’s Name:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Title:

Effectiveness of Appraisal Systems in Performance Management

Introduction:

The competitive corporate world of today demands organizations to have effective appraisal systems which are important not only for the employees but also for the productivity of the organization. The basic aim of this paper is to critically analyze the effectiveness of different appraisal systems utilized by organizations for reviewing the performance of their employees. This paper will be arguing on the fact that existence of an appraisal system is very significant in an organization as it helps to make it more efficient and effective. The paper first gives an introduction of appraisal system and its definition by different authors, its evolution and then it focuses on the various types and aspects of having a right system in place, the need for a supportive organisational structure including the process of carrying out the performance appraisal has also been discussed. Limitations to the performance appraisal are also added and finally the paper concludes at the fact of how an effective appraisal system improves the organization’s productivity and performance.

Critical Analysis:

According to Dressler and Varkey ( 2010) ‘Human Resource Management’ defines the process of all the policies and practices that are involved in carrying out the issues and aspects of a management position which involves elements of acquiring, recruiting, training, appraising, compensating employees and addressing their health, labour relations, safety and fairness concerns as well. HR department and the HR managers are responsible for all such activities to be carried out effectively.

All the elements of HRM functions stated play an important role in adding to the productivity of the organization, if carried out efficiently and fairly. Performance appraisal is defined as the procedure which involves setting of work standards or benchmarking the requirements of the organization, assessment of employee’s performance in comparison with the set standards and providing feedback on those outcomes with either the aim of motivating them to continue with the present behaviour or eliminate certain activities in order to improve their performance with a larger focus towards contributing to the organizational performance (Dessler and Varkkey, 2010).

Performance appraisal could be described as the evaluation of an employee which is carried out after a fixed period of time in an organisation; the process is carried out in order to measure the performance against the presumed or stated requirements of the job design (Terry and Franklin, 2003).

Performance appraisal provide the necessary information required for making personnel decisions which cover determining the salary packages, promotion recommendations of the effective employees, designing the training and development programs as well the performance feedback for the employees and maintaining a record for the organization (Huber, 1983).

For over the last 40 years, it has been present in the argument of HR theory that the factors of job satisfaction and employee attitudes which are identified with the help of effective appraisal systems in place, have the likely relation of being associated with better organizational performance and on this basis satisfied workers will perform better than those who are dissatisfied at the workplace (Patterson et al., 2003).

Systematic techniques for evaluating performance became prominent during and immediately after the World War I and they were basically used for carrying out an evaluation of the US Military Officers. During 1920’s and 1930’s, industrialists concerns about installation of a reasonable and fair wage structures for workers who were employed for hourly jobs also came in the limelight. A policy was established by them that grade wage increases would be merit based. The initial employee appraisal plans were named as the merit rating programs (Khan, 2007).

Fletcher (2001) stated that performance appriasal used to be a term which was associated with the process of involving a line manager who used to complete an annual report about the performance of his subordinate, and sometimes but not always, discussing it with him as well in the appraisal interview. This tradition has changed over the period of time and has become more strategic and a number of organization wide processes come under the header of Performance Appraisal. As a result Wingrove (2003) said that performance management has the distinguishing factor of explicitly measuring the employee’s training, standard setting, appraisal, feedback options in relation to his required performance which contributes to the company’s goal and strategy achievement.

Performance appraisal is very important as it offers the organisation to form a practical point of view for setting the pay standards, promotion decsion and benchmarking (Morgan, 2006). It helps in translating the employer’s goals into employee’s startegic goals as well as allow the boss and subordinate in developing a plan for correction of defeciencies and last but not the least they also help in the process of carrer planning (Dessler and Varkkey, 2010).

Ayaz (2007) states that managers must realize the importance of apprisal systems as they help in the developement of employees which is beneficial for the organisation in the long term, organsations develope their employees to inculcate in them the ownership, philoshphy and values of the organisation. This developement procedure is a continuous cycle of setting some standardized performance goals, provision of training facilities for achieving the goals, assessment of their performance as for the accomplishment of goals and then setting new higher goals.

Types of Performance Appraisal:

There are a number of procedures which measure the performance of employees but most commonly employed include the graphics rating scale which measures between the traits and range of performance for each with the score, Alteration Ranking Method rates employees as highest to lowest, Paired Comparison Method ranks employees in pairs on basis of making a chart for the triats which indicate the better pair of employees. Forced grading is same as grading on a curve, ACR is also commonly employed, BARS is a quantitative measure which combines the benefits of narrative critical incidents and quantified ratings, MBO measures on the basis of setting goals and then a periodic review for the employee etc. (Dessler and Varkkey, 2010). 360 degree performance appraisals have also been adapted by various organisations which give a broader, purposeful and elaborative feedback of top down and same level employees to the employee who is undergoing the performance appraisal (Clawson and Yemen, 2008).

Steps in Performance Appraisal:

The performance appraisal process contains three major steps which range from defining the job first, appraising the performer and then later providing with the feedback. Defining of the job means that the subordinate and the appraiser should agree on the same job standards and duties which are to be evaluated; appraising completes the task of developing a comparison between the set standards and achievement of the employee and the last one requires the feedback session only (Dessler and Varkkey, 2010).

 

Performance Appraisal and Organisation structure:

Cleveland and Morrison (1986) comment that there has been a very little research made which addresses the relation between organisational characteristics and the use of performance appraisal. However, there is some theoretical support present in the literature for such hypotheses that certain context of the organization and its environmental influence the way in which the performance appraisal is employed to make the decisions (Gooding and Wanger, 1985). For elaboration the examples include the structural characteristics, which focus on complexities and the formalization of the decisions of the organization (Birnbaum and Wong, 1985) and the financial aspects and condition of the organization (Nadler, 1981). Organisation structure, culture, contextual factors etc affect the way in which the information from the performance appraisal is employed by the appraisers in making decisions for the organisation (Cleveland, R.Murphy and E.Williams, 1989).

Limitations:

The analysis of literature has uncovered some major aspects which could be a cause of harm for the performance appraisal systems e-g if some high officials are exempted from evaluation, the appraisal is carried out in order to punish and not developing the low performers, presence of uncertainty in the minds of performers about the its after effects, such policies of the organisation which lead to disturb the performance of the employee who is being targeted etc (Deluca, 1993).

Ayaz (2007) reported that appraiser’s memories are quite fallible and in most of the cases for wrong performance appraisal he is susceptible to set his likings and disliking, his expectation about people and such kind of expectations might not be reasonable and rational at all. Such kinds of attitudes and events make the appraisal not reliable and the true ratings differ from the ones that are being given to the employee being rated.

Segal (2000) reported that a fundamentally flawed appraisal if employed which focuses on encouraging an individual, ultimately results in discouraging teamwork/ collaboration and issues of inconsistency in setting and application of appraisal criteria is found. A flawed system only focuses on extreme matters (performers who are exceptionally good or bad), or if appraisal’s goal is to achieve only the short term goals, supporting the autocrat supervisors thus subjective appraisal results may result in the development of agony and torture among the employees.

Utilizing vague qualities and measurement criteria which is not relevant, use of ineffective checklists for evaluation, employing monologues instead for using dialogues in the feedback sessions, appraisers being reluctant to provide the feedback, supervisor becoming a source of showing misguidance to the appraiser add to making the performance appraisal inefficient (Nurse, 2005). Horvath and Andrew (2007) also added to an inaccurate performance appraisal by commenting that supervisor and organization itself at times become the cause of an ineffective performance appraisal.

Conclusion:

Many authors and researchers have commented upon the common outcomes of an effective appraisal process in place. According to Beer (1981) performance appraisals give a chance to employees to learn about themselves, their knowledge of what they are doing and how they are doing as well as their learning about the organization’s philosophy also gets enhanced. Stephen and Dorfman (1989) further contributed by saying that an effective appraisal system include the improvement in the accuracy of employee performance which helps in the establishment of a relationship between a performance task and the reward potential clarity.

Dobins, Cardy and PlatzVieno (1990) coined that there are five important outcomes of an effective appraisal system which include use of the evaluations as a form of feedback to performance development, reduction in employee turnover, increased motivation level, existence of feelings of equity among the employees and development of a linkage between the performance and rewards. Similarly Nurse (2005) viewed outcomes from her opinion as the provision of information from the appraisal for managerial strategies and for the functions of training and development as the significant outcome.

Teratanavat, Raitano and Kleiner (2006) discovered the major outcomes in his view as reduction in employee stress, a holistic review of overall progress, development of linkage between the current performance and employee’s goals and strategies as well the development of particular action plans for future progress of the organisation. A performance appraisal gives a picture of effectiveness of human capital.

The paper has analyzed the meaning, types, processes, benefits, supportive organizational structure and the limitations to the Appraisal system in Performance management. The arguments present that it is important for an organization to have the appraisal systems in place. There are many types of performance appraisals which are used by the organizations so it is imperative that the organization makes a reasonable and rational decision for selection of the type of performance appraisal which suits its environment, structure and demands. Having a right performance appraisal system is more significant as compared to having an appraisal system as this decision directly impacts the productivity of the organization.

Performance appraisal is basically a step wise process which starts from the individual level considering the employees and then move towards the larger and bigger aspect of how it affects the performance of the organization as a whole. An organization which has a fair, efficient and reliable appraisal system in place does perform better. The paper has argued that existence of an appraisal system is very essential for the organization to perform better. Organizations having an effective and productive appraisal system installed do make their mark in the competitive industry of the 21st century.

Reference List:

 

Beer, M. (1981) ‘Performance appraisal: Dilemmas and possibilities’, Organisational Dynamics, vol. 9, no. 3, December, pp. 24-36.

Birnbaum, P.H. and Wong, G.Y.Y. (1985) ‘Organizational Structure of Multinational Banks in Hong Kong from a culture free perspective’, Administrative Science Quaterly, vol. 30, no. 2, June, pp. 262-277.

Clawson, J.G. and Yemen, G. (2008) 360 feedback, 1st edition, Virginia: Darden Business Publishing.

Cleveland, N.J. and Morrison, R. (1986) ‘Rater Intentions in Appriasal ratings: Malevolent manipulation or functional fudging?’, Unpublished manuscript, Colorado State University.

Cleveland, J.N., R.Murphy, K. and E.Williams, R. (1989) ‘Multiple Uses of Performance Appraisal:Prevalence and Correlates’, Journal of Applied Psychology, vol. 74, no. 1, pp. 130-135.

Deluca, M.J. (1993) Handbook of compensation management, 1st edition, Englewood Cliffs: Prentice Hall.

Dessler, G. and Varkkey, B. (2010) Human Resource Management, 11th edition, UP: Dorling Kindersley.

Dobbins, G.H., Cardy, R.L. and PlatzVieno, S.J. (1990) ‘A contingency approach to appraisal satisfaction: an initial investigation of the joint effects of organizational variables and appraisal characteristics’, Journal of Management, vol. 16, no. 3, September, pp. 619-623.

Fletcher, C. (2001) ‘Performance Apprraisal and Management:The developing research agenda’, Journal of Occupational and Organizational Psychology, vol. 78, pp. 473-487.

Gooding, R.Z. and Wanger, J.A. (1985) ‘A metanalysis review review of the relationship between size and performance: The productivity and efficiency of organisations and their subunits’, Administrative Science Quaterly, vol. 30, no. 4, December, pp. 462-481.

Horvath, M. and Andrews, S.B. (2007) ‘The Role of Fairness Perceptions and Accountability Attributions in Predicting Reactions to Organizational Events’, Journal of Psychology, vol. 141, no. 2, March, pp. 203-222.

Huber, L.V. (1983) ‘An analysis of performance management practices in the public sector: A review and recommendation’, Public Personnel Management, vol. 12, pp. 258-267.

Khan, A. (2007) ‘Performance Appraisal’s Relation with Productivity and Job Satisfaction’, Journal of Managerial Science, vol. 1, no. 2, December, pp. 102-114.

Morgan, R. (2006) ‘Making the most of performance Mnaagement Systems’, Compensation and Benefits Review, September/October, pp. 22-27.

Nadler, D.A. (1981) ‘Managing Organizational Change: An integrative Perspective’, Journal of Applied Behavioral Science, vol. 17, no. 2, April, pp. 191-211.

Nurse, L. (2005) ‘Performance appraisal, employee development and organizational justice: exploring the linkages.’, The International Journal of Human Resource Management, vol. 16, no. 7, July, pp. 1176-1194.

Patterson, M.G., West, M.A., Lawthom, R. and Nickell, S. (2003) Impact of People Management Practices on Business Performance, Wiltshire: CIPD.

Ratachai, T., Raitano, R.E. and Kleiner, B.H. (2006) ‘How to Reduce Employee Stress’, Nonprofit World, vol. 24, no. 3, May, pp. 22-24.

Segal, J.A. (2000) Your Appraisal Process?, 4510th edition, Philadelphia: HR Magzine.

Stephen, W.G. and Dorfman, P.W. (2007) ‘Administrative and Developmental Functions in Performance Appriasals: Conflict or Synergy?’, Basic & Applied Social Psychology, vol. 10, no. 1, July, pp. 27-41.

Terry, G. and Franklin, S.G. (2003) Principles of Management, 8th edition, Dehli: AITBS Publishers.

Wingrove, C. (2003) ‘Developing an effective blend of process and technology in the new era of performance management’, Compensation and Benefits Review, vol. 35, no. 1, January/February, pp. 25-31.