Leadership Skills Demonstrated by Sir Alex Ferguson

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Leadership Skills Demonstrated by Sir Alex Ferguson

Born in 31st December 1941, Sir Alex Ferguson has been managing Manchester United Football Club from 1986 t- 2013. Previously, he served as a Scottish football player and manager. Following the consistently splendid results that Manchester United continues to record in major premier leagues, Sir Alex Ferguson remains one of the most respected and admired team leaders in the history of football (Silverthorne, 2013).

Indeed, Ferguson’s ability to manage such a huge club is no doubt a spectacular feat. For nearly three decades, Ferguson has turned out to be probably the only manager who has managed to succeed consistently for three consecutive decades. One of his outstanding impressive talents is deft motivation and management of highly reputable players in the world. As the manager of one of the largest football clubs of the twenty-first century, Ferguson has demonstrated his commitment to adopting the latest training technology and regimens. Furthermore, the manager continually plots viable success strategies for the club’s fraternity as a whole.

As documented in Silverthorne (2013), Ferguson’s willingness to nurture young talents is motivated by his long-term experience in managing football clubs. From a critical view, he also turns out to be a revolutionist as evident from his relentless efforts to revolutionize the club’s affairs. Ferguson’s role is dominantly visible in the organization. For example, the manager has been at the forefront in fostering club unity by ensuring that senior players warmed up with academy players on a daily basis. It is through his effective leadership skills that most of the players he developed— Paul Scholes, Gary Neville, David Beckham, Ryan Giggs—are now perfect standouts of the 21st century football (Silverthorne, 2013).

 

Overall, the success of Manchester United Club is attributed to Ferguson’s effective management skills. His most outstanding personality lies in his flexibility (Silverthorne, 2013). Apart from adopting new approaches and technologies in management, he also hires the services of sports scientists who assist the club in developing new ways of improving performance and measuring success.

Reference

Sean Silverthorne (2013). HBS Cases: Sir Alex Ferguson–Managing Manchester United. Retrieved November 8, 2013 from:

< http://hbswk.hbs.edu/item/7123.html&gt;

 

A performance marketing insight event which happened on 29th to 30th October 2013 at Westminster park plaza in London

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Date

A performance marketing insight event which happened on 29th to 30th October 2013 at Westminster park plaza in London

The modern business field has grown very competitive in nature.  To adapt this competitive nature various suppliers’ deployed different marketing tools to get good returns. Advertising has proven to be one key market tool which cannot be ignored by in industry in the business field. Marketing strategies are adopted by companies mainly to lay down the objectives of the company in question, define them in terms of the time frame of their achievement, that is, short term missions, or the long-term missions. But the market strategy is always not complete without mentioning the proposed ways of achieving those missions. More to that, a market strategy include market segmentation, targeting and positioning; through which the company knows where, when and what types of customers to go for. The essay will analyze the marketing event which happened in London recently.

In advertisement, there are many choices to pick from; ranging from television advertising, radio advertising, newspaper advertising to magazine advertising. Each of these channels has their own advantages and disadvantages, and a company should therefore make the right choice depending on their objectives. In this event many speakers spoke about marketing strategies and many firms had sponsored the event as a form of advertising. The event brought together many international speakers and many successful companies who inspired many.

Marketing plays a major role in the success of a companies and organizations. It enables them to serve customers in the desired manner. Companies have taken advantage of events to market themselves like the recent performance marketing event in London.

Why sport events tend to attract marketers.

Sports audiences are considered to offer desirable demographics for advertisers. Generally sports audience is heavily dominated by hard-to-reach males who are mainly between the ages 18-35. Sports audiences are likely to be well-educated, and with a considerable income at their disposal. Advertisers are usually willing to pay lots of money in order to reach this audience due to the fact that they tend to influence purchasing decision concerning their products. The success of Nike Company may be attributed to the company’s strong marketing plans that enable it to attract more and more customers. The success of the company can also be attributed to its commitment to continuous innovation to ensure its products serve the needs of the customers.

Nike Company marketing

To achieve the global image in sports arena Nike has been involved in massive marketing practices through well and organized advertisements. Keeping in mind the stiff competition in the sportswear field, Nike has embraced technology and most up to date advertisement techniques. Nike has taken its advertisement above the normal TV, billboards and paper advertisement to sport events. One of the strategies which has positively worked for Nike sport wear is using the users or sports personalities as advertising Medias, although this comes at fee its impacts on Nike returns has exceeded the cost involved. Apart from sports personalities like footballers, athletes among others, Nike has also engaged large number football clubs, national teams and institutions in sweet deals which act as sales and advertisements at the same time. The reputation of the sports personalities, national teams and institutions associated with Nike has been the strongest advertising tool for Nike in the sports arena.

Reasons for marketing through sport events

            The reason why sports events on television are attractive to advertisers is due to the intensity sports audiences have towards the game. Sporting events are live and unscripted, and dramatic incidents may take place at any time. Televised sporting events are considered by audience as colorful spectacle, characterized by heroes who battle in active conflicted directed by strategy, regulated by the rules, and applauded by fans in a stadium (Fourie 2007). The fans who view sporting events via television are further assisted in interpreting the contest by television cameras that focus on actions considered important. Sports announcers also help fans to focus, as the comments they make stresses the significance of the events and its players. If the broadcasters manage to capture the attention of the audience well, fans will be attentive when commercial messages appear. In the news papers, sports pages normally capture the importance of events that are frequently broadcasted. Sports pages basically prepare funs in advance for sporting events (Hutchins & Rowe 2012). And after a sporting event has taken place, the sports pages recaptures the same themes, putting the game and its players in a world of fantasy, which sports readers and writers have contributed in creating.

The English premier league event

            The use of parties in the sports arena as advertisement agencies has been a major contributor to Nike returns. This type of advertisement has opened new way of advertisement which can simply be described as advertisement by usage or consumptions. This form of advertisement brings product close to the user, the convincing power of this mode of advertisement is high compared to the other modes (Kennedy  & Hills 2009). The English premier league events have helped Nike products to market themselves and it has greatly contributed to Nike’s success. This form of advertisement common defined as commercials in the sports arena communicates products qualities such as durability, comfort ability and decency. People who like to associate with or fans of these sports personalities and teams tend to develop perceptions on the products mainly based daily sporting activity of their proffered sports men.

A good example football fans who watch their favorite players or teams use Nike product will tend associate Nike products with durability and comfort ability due to the fact that football as a sport involve some physicality. The features highlighted in the adverts play a major part in developing the comparability attributes. What is advertised ought to strike or capture the attention of the prospective buyers by highlighting some features that are not common in the previous Nike products.

Analysis

In the UK and other countries, corporations sponsor sporting events and teams directly with the aim of attaching their name to the meaning of a certain sporting activity. Apart from directly sponsoring spotting events, corporations also purchase advertising time on television when sports programs are being aired. Corporations engage in these activities as away of capturing concentrated yet elusive audience. Sports make up a very significant part of television programming because it enables television networks to sell particular segment of audiences to corporation wishing to reach that audience. The uniforms of men and women who take part in sports normally bear logos belonging to global corporations, which transmits the characteristics of these footballers to the products, encouraging mass sales. Media networks and communication enable the connection between sports, advertising and society to be made and broadcasted around the world (Kennedy & Hills 2009). Events like the premier league affect marketing in a positive way.

It is important to note that most advertisements do elicit various moods regarding information processing about products. Advertising using commercials or sport events among others has great impacts on trends and styles of product’s success. Nike will continue to succeed if it associates itself with sport events. Advertising is an important tool for successful sales of any product or service in the marketing. It is one of he most important marketing tools commonly used by firms to pass product information to the customers

 

 

 

 

Bibliography

Fourie, PJ 2007, Media Studies, Cape Town, Juta.

Hutchins, B & Rowe, D 2012, Sport beyond Television: The Internet, Digital Media and the Rise of Networked Media Sport, New York, Routledge.

Kennedy, E & Hills, L 2009, Sport, Media and Society, New York, NY, Berg.

 

Sustainability and Renewable Energy Assignment

Sustainability and Renewable Energy Assignment

Solution 1:

Consider the following very simplified load duration curve for a small utility:

 

 

COAL

CC

GT

Capital Cost ($/kW)

$ 1,500.00

$ 1,000.00

$ 500.00

Variable Cost (c/kWh)

2.50

4.00

8.00

a) Draw the screening curves for each type of power plant.

Answer:

 COAL:    

 CC:

 GT:

The screening curves are given in the following figure:

 

 

b) Suggest a least‐cost combination of power plants for this utility.

Answer:

 GT = CC:

    
      H1 = 1250 hours
   CC = Coal:

  

   H2 = 3333 hours

   GT < 1250 hours;

   1250 hours < CC < 3333 hours;

   Coal > 3333 hours

   X intercept => (0-7000) = (3000/9000)(x)

   => x =21000

   Demand: 1000 – (7000/21000) H

      Demand @H1:
     1000 – (7000/21000) *1250 = 583
     MW Demand @H2:

    1000 – (7000/21000)*3333= -111MW
    

    Coal: 583 MW; CC: 583 – (-111) = 694 MW; GT: 1000 – 583 = 417 MW4

 

 

 

c)      Estimate the capacity factor for each type of power plant.

 

Capacity factor for GT: = =7.9%

Capacity factor for CC: = =10.9%

Capacity factor for Coal: =29.6%

 

d)     How much electricity would each type of power plant generate each year?

GT:  =691.8GW

CC:  =1588.8GW

COAL:  =1759.1GW

 

  
    e) What annual revenue would the utility need to receive from each type of power plant?

 

            GT: 

CC:

COAL:

    f. What would be the cost of electricity from each type of power plant?

Answer:

GT:

 

CC:

 

GT:

 

Problem2:

Suppose 0.01 m3/s of water is taken from a creek and delivered through 150 m of pipe to a 40% efficient turbine/generator 50 m lower than the source.

 

a.   Assuming locally available Poly pipe comes in 1 cm diameter increments (starting with 2 cm), pick a pipe size to keep flow to less than a recommended speed of 2 m/s.

b.   In a 30‐day month, how much energy would be provided?

c.   With a 5‐nozzle Pelton wheel, what diameter jets would be appropriate?

 
Answers:

a)       

 

b)      Appendix A (Length):               

Appendix A (Flow rate):           

Figure 4.19:                               

Friction loss:                              

Neat head:                                 

Power:                                        

Energy:                                               

 

c.   With a 5‐nozzle Pelton wheel, what diameter jets would be appropriate?

 

 

 

 

Question 3 (3 marks)

 

Set up a cash‐flow analysis spreadsheet for a photovoltaic system that costs $12,000, generates 8000  and is paid for with a 6%, 20‐year loan. Assume a tax bracket of 30.5%, initial cost of utility electricity 10¢/kWh, utility electricity rate escalation  and personal discount rate of 10%.

 

 

 

  Answer:

 

Loan principal = AUD12000

Interest = 0.06

Loan term = 20 years

CRF (0.06,20) = 0.06*1.0620/(1.0520‐1) = 0.1164/yr

Payments = AUD12000 * 0.1164/yr = AUD1396/yr

Tax bracket = 0.305

        Energy savings = 8000 kWh/yr

        Initial price = AUD0.1/kWh

        Initial savings = AUD1000/yr

        Escalation rate = 0.05/yr

        Personal discount rate = 0.1

 

 

 

 

Load

Power

Hours/day

Energy/day

Refrigerator

1140W

 1h

                  1140.00Wh

Microwave oven

1000W

1/4h

              250.00 Wh

Washing machine

500W

3/7h

                     214.28 Wh

Satellite receiver systesystem

NA    17W

2h

34.00 Wh

Lights

100W

8h

800.00 Wh

TV

12W

2h

24.00 Wh

TV standby

5.1W

22h

112.2 Wh

Laptop

20W

4h

80.00 Wh

Well pump

100W

2h

200.00Wh

Transformers

18W

24h

432.00 Wh

TOTALS

2907.00W (peak power   include TV standby!)

 

                  3286.48Wh

 

 

b.  à24 VDC

c.   

d. 

e. 

 

 

Problem 5: For the following turbines and average Rayleigh wind speeds, set up a spreadsheet to find the total annual energy delivered and compare that with an estimate obtained using the simple correlation given in (6.65) in the textbook:

 

a.  Bonus 300 kW / 33.4 m, 7 m/s average wind speed

b.  NEG/Micon 1000 kW / 60 m, 8 m/s average wind speed

c.  Vestas 600 kW / 42 m, 8 m/s average wind speed

d.  Whisper 0.9 kW / 2.13 m, 5 m/s average wind speed                      

Solutions:

For calculation of probability, the formula used is

 

 

 

a) Spreadsheet for total energy for Bonus 300 kW / 33.4 m, 7 m/s average wind speed

 

 

Wind Speed

Power of Bonus

f(v)

Hrs/year at V

Energy (KWh/yr)

0

0

0

0

0

1

0

0

0

0

2

0

0

0

0

3

4

0.1984

1737.707

6950.83

4

15

0.0261

229.021

3435.31

5

32

0.0000

0.001

0.04

6

52

0.0000

0.000

0.00

7

87

0.0000

0.000

0.00

8

129

0.0000

0.000

0.00

9

172

0.0000

0.000

0.00

10

212

0

0

0

11

251

0

0

0

12

281

0

0

0

13

297

0

0

0

14

305

0

0

0

15

300

0

0

0

16

281

0

0

0

17

271

0

0

0

18

259

0

0

0

19

255

0

0

0

20

253

0

0

0

21

254

0

0

0

22

255

0

0

0

23

256

0

0

0

24

257

0

0

0

25

258

0

0

0

 

 

 

TOTAL

10386.18

 

a) Spreadsheet for total energy for NEG/Micon 1000 kW / 60 m, 8 m/s average wind speed

 

Wind Speed

Power of Micon

f(v)

Hrs/year at V

Energy (KWh/yr)

0

0

0

0

0

1

0

0

0

0

2

0

0

0

0

3

0

0

0

0

4

33

3E-06

0.022427505

0.740108

5

86

2E-39

1.47928E-35

1.27E-33

6

150

1E-119

9.0001E-116

1.4E-113

7

248

0

0

0

8

385

0

0

0

9

535

0

0

0

10

670

0

0

0

11

780

0

0

0

12

864

0

0

0

13

924

0

0

0

14

964

0

0

0

15

989

0

0

0

16

1000

0

0

0

17

998

0

0

0

18

987

0

0

0

19

968

0

0

0

20

944

0

0

0

21

917

0

0

0

22

889

0

0

0

23

863

0

0

0

24

840

0

0

0

25

822

0

0

0

 

 

 

TOTAL

0.740108

 

a) Spreadsheet for total energy for Vestas 600 kW / 42 m, 8 m/s average wind speed

 

Wind Speed

Power of Vestas

f(v)

Hrs/year at V

Energy (KWh/yr)

0

0

0

0

0

1

0

0

0

0

2

0

0

0

0

3

0

0

0

0

4

0

0

0

0

5

22

0.002851

24.97239098

549.3926

6

65

0.000000

8.7105E-19

5.66E-17

7

120

0.000000

1.01198E-72

1.21E-70

8

188

0.000000

4.3023E-184

8.1E-182

9

268

0

0

0

10

356

0

0

0

11

440

0

0

0

12

510

0

0

0

13

556

0

0

0

14

582

0

0

0

15

594

0

0

0

16

598

0

0

0

17

600

0

0

0

18

600

0

0

0

19

600

0

0

0

20

600

0

0

0

21

600

0

0

0

22

600

0

0

0

23

600

0

0

0

24

600

0

0

0

25

600

0

0

0

 

 

 

TOTAL

549.3926

 

a) Spreadsheet for total energy for Whisper 0.9 kW / 2.13 m, 5 m/s average wind speed

 

Wind Speed

Power of Whisper

f(v)

Hrs/year at V

Energy (KWh/yr)

0

0

0

0

0

1

0

0

0

0

2

0

0

0

0

3

0.03

0.0037679

33.00675

0.990202

4

0.08

0.0100460

88.00279

7.040223

5

0.17

0.0213326

186.8739

31.76856

6

0.25

0.0313384

274.5247

68.63118

7

0.35

0.0437912

383.6112

134.2639

8

0.45

0.0561618

491.977

221.3896

9

0.62

0.0769377

673.9744

417.8642

10

0.78

0.0961142

841.9604

656.7291

11

0.9

0.1102012

965.3625

868.8262

12

1.02

0.1239944

1086.191

1107.915

13

1.05

0.1273926

1115.959

1171.757

14

1.08

0.1307698

1145.543

1237.187

15

1.04

0.1262622

1106.057

1150.299

16

1.01

0.1228570

1076.228

1086.99

17

1

0.1217174

1066.245

1066.245

18

0.99

0.1205756

1056.242

1045.68

19

0.97

0.1182852

1036.178

1005.093

20

0.95

0.1159861

1016.038

965.2364

21

0

0

0

0

22

0

0

0

0

23

0

0

0

0

24

0

0

0

0

25

0

0

0

0

 

 

*********

Education Reform: New Paradigms for Teaching and Learning

             Public confidence in the public education system is important for any country. Development of a nation depends on how well the public education system manages to educate the people who are capable of learning. Education stakeholders should therefore look for ways of improving the public education system continuously. Education system helps to give the children the success tools (Dweck, page 2). This paper analyses the contemporary public education system, the barriers to effective learning and the new techniques that can be used to foster learning among students.                                                                                                                               The public education system is often criticized for failing to meet its mission and objective of effectively educating all the people who are capable of learning. The narrative character of the relationship between the teacher and the student has been blamed for this failure. The way through which the teacher presents reality for the students is fundamentally flawed. In most cases, teachers only concern themselves with filling the students with the content of the subject matter. This method enables students to get the subject matter whose emphasis is on the sonority of words. Purposeful teaching should have content that has transforming power (Freire, page 1).                                                                                                                                            Even though such faults have been identified in the public education system, criticizing them is not enough. It is of essence that education experts find out and solve the barriers that have hindered efficient dissemination of knowledge into students. Critics note that the American government has increased resources that are devoted towards improving the quality of schooling. However, they observe that this has yielded little improvement because the efforts by the government largely ignored giving any incentives within the schools. Teachers have been sidelined. They do not get any performance incentives from the government. This, the experts elaborate, has lowered the quality of education in the public education system. It is further stated that the government has failed to recognize the essence of human capital formation to the education system. Reducing the size of classes and tightening the teaching qualification requirements does but marginally improves the quality of education in public institutes (Hanushek, page 64).                                                                                                                                             Freire (page 1) blames the method of delivering content to students. He looks at it as the impediment towards achievement of quality education in public institutes. His thoughts seem to agree with Hanushek (page 64). The two authors agree that teachers do not do enough to foster transformative knowledge among students in the public education system. The author cites lack of in the public education system as the main cause of teachers’ ambivalence towards their mission in education. In the current American education system, teachers and other stakeholders perceive students to be very ignorant. The students are equated to slaves in the Hegelian dialectic. This is an ideology of oppression and is antithetical to effective education. Given that the system lacks transformation, it is difficult for students and teachers to help one another in improvement of ways of fostering knowledge.                                                                              Au (page 258) is of the opinion that the structuring of the curriculum is an obstacle to proper teaching in the American public education system. The author gives three elements of the curriculum which have been tampered with by the public education stakeholders. Pedagogy is also cited as another aspect of teaching that has negatively influenced the effectiveness of the public education system in America. According to this observation, changes have to be made in the structure and form of the curricular knowledge. As well, teachers should have an in-depth knowledge of the subject matter content. This helps in improving the quality of the public education system.                                                                                                                                 High-stake testing is a contributory cause of a poor education system in the United States.  Au (page 258) states that the primary impact of the high-stakes testing is the narrowing down of the subject content to the objects that will be tested. This leads to the development of teacher centered pedagogy. In this case, the knowledge of the subject area is narrowed down to test-related content. Instead of helping to expand the curricular content, high-stakes testing narrows content. This leaves students with inadequate knowledge.                                                                         Improvement of teaching methods in the public education sector in the United States can be done with emphasis on professional development of the teachers. Professional development has been found to have a major impact on the learning of students. According to Fishman et al (page 644), professional development includes teacher reflection, classroom observation and assessment of performance of students. During reflection, a teacher does a retrospective analysis of his lessons. This helps the teacher to improve his method of delivering content to the students. In classroom observation, a teacher should evaluate the understanding of subject content by allowing students to take part in group discussions and presentations.                                                 Ball et al (page 14) uses mathematics subject to explain the ways through which learning can be improved in the American public education sector. The author observes that the quality of mathematics teaching depends on the teachers’ knowledge of the subject content. However, it is pointed out that most teachers in America do not have the proper skills and understanding of mathematics. According to the author, most teachers are only but products of the same weak public education system. Teachers need to improve their understanding of the subject content in order to foster it among students.                                                                                                      Freire (page 6) proposes a teaching method that uses problem-posing education. In this method, students are able to develop the power to perceive the way they live in the world. If teachers implement this system, students will no longer look at the world as a static reality. Students who go through the problem-posing method of education are able to look at the world as a reality in transformation. This method requires that teachers allow students to approach learning from a problem solving angle. It is therefore imperative for the public education system to enforce policies that ensure teachers adopt such a method of teaching students.      

Annotated Bibliography

 

Au, Wayne. “High-stakes testing and curricular control: A qualitative metasynthesis.”             Educational Researcher 36.5 (2007): 258-267.

 

             The paper presented research findings about high-stakes testing in the United States education system. The research aimed to find the relationship between high-stakes testing and the expansion of the curriculum. In the findings, the paper reported that high-stakes testing was most likely to lead to narrowing of curricular content. The paper was balanced in its reporting. It cited instances where high-stakes testing led to expansion of curricular. The information helps in understanding the hindrances that the public education sector in the United States.     

 

Ball, Deborah Loewenberg, Heather C. Hill, and Hyman Bass. “Knowing mathematics for                         teaching: Who knows mathematics well enough to teach third grade, and how can we     decide?.” (2005).

 

           This article discusses the knowledge of mathematics content by the teachers. In the article, the authors observe that most teachers in the United States do not have a proper understanding of mathematics. This is noted as one of the reasons that make the teaching of the subject to be difficult. This article is useful in understanding professional development of teachers. The article is objective in its evaluation of the reasons why teaching of mathematics has challenges in the United States.

 

Dweck, Carol. Mindset: The new psychology of success. Random House Digital, Inc., 2006.

 

           In this work, Dweck observes that education contributes a lot in developing the mindset of the students. She states that the learning process is more than the imparting of knowledge. The salient issue raised in the paper deals with the psychology of influencing the mindset of human beings. Success in learning should therefore be looked upon using the psychology of success. The author introduces new dimensions about praise. As opposed to the commonly held thought that praise is good, the author states that praise is more complicated than the way people look at it.   

 

Fishman, Barry J., et al. “Linking teacher and student learning to improve professional             development in systemic reform.” Teaching and teacher education 19.6 (2003): 643-658.

 

           The research paper discusses the importance of professional development of teachers. Professional development, the paper supposes, helps teachers to improve their contact with students. The paper delves deep into teacher reflection, assessment of student performance and classroom observation. It explains the three elements as important in improving quality of education in schools. This information is incisive and helps in understanding the ways through which the education system can be improved.     

 

Freire, Paulo. Pedagogy of the oppressed. Continuum International Publishing Group, 2000.

 

 

         The chapter of this book is important in understanding the obstacles to proper learning in the public education system of the United States. The author uses dialectical methods of Hegel to explain the otherwise strenuous relationship between teachers and students in a classroom setting. The book states that most of the education is about narration. It proposes a question-position method of learning where students and teachers engage in a very constructive manner.  

 

Hanushek, Eric A. “The Failure of Input‐based Schooling Policies*.” The economic journal             113.485 (2003): F64-F98.

     

            In this paper, the author points out the faults that occur when the government dwells on improvement of schools at the expense of motivating teachers. The author postulates that motivation of teachers is one of the ways of improving the quality of education in public schools. Although the author does not present data to back up his postulates, the overall arguments upon which he draws his conclusion are logically sound. The arguments are useful in finding out the barriers to better education in the American system.   

 

 

 

 

Geekchic

International Management

 

Course Name:

Cross-cultural management; a case of GeekChic

 

Report on cross-cultural international management in Paris, France

 

Individual Assignment for Dr Nathalie van Meurs

 

Student:

Student Number:

 

 

Table OF CONTENTS

Introduction.. 3

Background on GeekChic.. 3

Macro-level facts of Paris, France.. 3

Financial and Economic Climate. 3

Geography of Paris. 4

Social Climate. 4

Political climate. 4

Technological climate. 5

Analysis of French Culture based on Hofstede’s 5-D Model.. 5

Power Distance: 5

Individualism.. 5

Masculinity/Femininity. 6

Uncertainty avoidance. 6

Long term orientation. 7

Analysis of business and management culture in France.. 7

Key issues related to management culture in Paris, France.. 7

Cultural intelligence in dealing with globalization. 7

How business decisions are made. 8

How negotiations and communication is conducted. 8

Conclusion and recommendations. 9

Recommendations. 9

Appendix.. 10

 

 


 

Introduction

This report gives a cross-cultural perspective of Paris and France in general. It seeks to offer management advice, specifically cross-cultural training to a new manager about to be transferred to Paris, France as an international executive.

Background on GeekChic

According to Holden (2002), the key cross-cultural management competencies are participative competence, interactive translation, cross-cultural networking, collaborative cross-cultural learning, transfer of cross-cultural knowledge, experiences and values and creation of collaborative atmosphere.

As an executive, she needs to know the macro-level facts about Paris which will definitely affect her work and effect in GeekChic. This new executive, though well-performing and qualified for the international job has not had formal cross-cultural management training yet.

This is a global business so members of the staff will both include locals from France and those from other countries. The culture, the shared system of symbolic meanings has to be properly factored. The manager’s work is about dealing with people all the time. People’s conduct is influenced by the culture they know, in terms of politics, religion, sport among others.

Macro-level facts of Paris, France

Financial and Economic Climate

Paris is the capital of France, which is part of the larger European Union. T has a population of about 65 million. The GDP is $2.2 trillion, with a 1.7% growth and $35,156 per capita. The unemployment rate is around 10.6% while the FDI inflow of 40.9 billion. The major currency is the Euro, the major currency of the Eurozone. Here most credit cards are used. The USA Embassy is found on 2 avenue Gabriel 75382 Paris and can be contacted through Tel: +33(0) 1 43 12 22 22. The international telephone code is 00. At noon in Paris, the time in New York is 6.00am.

Geography of Paris

Climate is temperate in the North and continental in the North East, experiencing warm summers and colder winters. The south has a Mediterranean climate. There are four seasons in France, meaning one has to carefully consider clothing for different seasons; warm ones for winter and lighter ones for winter.

Social Climate

Socially, the form of greeting is handshaking but for familiar people kissing on both cheeks is practiced. The official language is French but Basque and Breton are also common languages.  It is important to note the shopping culture of shops closing at 12 noon to 2.30pm. In the restaurants two types of cuisine are available, ‘a la carte’, which is more expensive but wide choice and ‘le menu’ at fixed price much cheaper.

Political climate

France is ruled by a democratically elected president and prime minister who may or may not be from the same political party. The president is the head of state and resides in the Elysee Palace in Paris. The prime minister leads the government affairs. Arms of government are the executive, national assembly, senate and judiciary. French people are highly concerned about the leadership and actively participate in the elections with high voter turnout, demonstrated by about 78% in the presidential election conducted in 2012 (Roger D, 2013).

Technological climate

Paris is an industrialized city in Europe, well connected in terms of roads, railways systems and airlines. The mobile communication now operates on 3G networks. This almost matches what is in USA where you are more familiar so Paris will not present a significant shift in technology for you.

Analysis of French Culture based on Hofstede’s 5-D Model

The Hofstede comparison of France and USA demonstrates some differences in the 5-D Model Hofstede (1988), comparing France and USA, where the executive has been working and living.

Power Distance:

This is the extent to which power is distributed unequally and accepted by the less powerful members of a country’s organizations. France has a higher PDI value than USA; a score of 68 versus 40 respectively. Information flow is hierarchical and controlled by those in power. More formal attitudes exist towards managers and power is highly centralized. Hofstede (1988). In the USA, emphasis on equal rights  for all means that even managers highly depend on expertise of the individual employees and teams, a major difference with France. As a manager coming from the USA to France, when making decisions you need to appreciate the increased distance when relating in the business context and concentration of power at the top.

Individualism

According to Hofstede, the levels of interdependence for members of the society are lower in France as compared to the USA. French people still look after themselves and their direct family, giving more identity as ‘I’ as opposed to ‘We’ but at a lower rate than the Americans. Work is contract based with keen focus on the task a similar thing to the USA. People have freedom to communicate and give their opinions, however divergent( Hofstede, 1988). It is important for you as new manager in Paris to allow your team members to air their opinions freely.

Masculinity/Femininity

With a low figure of 43, in comparison to the 62 for USA, the French value relationships at work, caring more for each other. They have a welfare system (securite sociale), have fewer working hours per week and 5 holidays a year, me meaning there is a value for quality of life. Managers need to support dialogue to solve conflicts. In the USA, people ‘live to work’, striving to the best, making them more masculine than France. Decisions made by you as an executive must be careful not to rub the employees the wrong way for example by asking to cut down the lunch hour break or extend the working hours per week. You need to appreciate the French culture of quality rest time as well as holidays.

Uncertainty avoidance

The level of society dealing with an unpredictable future is very high, meaning they have more teachings, trainings and research to make prediction more possible. Ambiguity increases stress and managers need to know that the people value a certain degree of structure, rules and security. This contrasts the American culture, where there is more flexibility for the unknown future. The Americans are more open to try new products and accept new ideas (Hofstede, 1988). As a new executive with a background from America, you need to allow the people you find at GeekChic in Paris a significant level of structure to enable them work comfortably without a high degree of uncertainty.

Long term orientation

Absolute truths, respect for traditions as societal guidelines stand out in France. Quarterly results are very important in business. Consumers are driven by instant gratification and social trends, focusing less on savings. Self-reliance, and personal achievement are valued, hence managers being evaluated on short term results. (Hofstede, 1988). This value of 39 is slightly is higher than the USA value of 29 but not significantly different. Your role as new executive will be largely to influence the people you find at the organization and those who join later to focus more on the impact of the long-term on their day to day work. You need to help them focus on the future while still enjoying the moment which is what they are used to.

This is a graph from Hofstede’s website on the direct comparison of French and American Culture:

 

 

There is a significant contrast on Masculinity/Femininity between the two countries/territories. The Power Distance and Long Term Orientation is slightly higher in France. Uncertainty Avoidance is extremely high in France, not only when compared with USA but also globally. Individualism is lower in France.

 Analysis of business and management culture in France

Thorough understanding of the business and management culture in France is vital to your success as a new executive in the region. Your roles of planning, coordinating, organizing and controlling will be affected by the cultural context, highly different from what you are used to. Since the job entails dealing with people all the time, the cross culture must be appreciated. We believe you have the skill set of making presentations, critical reading, preparing report, in-depth analysis of results as well as facilitating collaborative group discussions.

Key issues related to management culture in Paris, France

Cultural intelligence in dealing with globalization

Commonly, note that management in France is highly ordered, paternalistic, and rigid. There are mostly clear social boundaries separating insiders and outsiders. According to Fukuyama (2000), the French prefer centralized, hierarchical and well organized authority. alleges that French managers as desirous of more power at the top and discontent with uncertainty about technology and legal matters (Schoenberget al.,1995). As a manager moving to France, it is important to be aware that the situation is different form American managers who prefer face-to-face interactions and in a way prefer formality and bureaucracy (Burt, 2000).

There is a high value for vertical hierarchical lines in work interactions which is different from what Americans generally value (Inzerilli and Laurent, 1983) It is good to be prepared for a more tight scope of operation in your new work as an executive, since your secretary is expected to play a key role in coordinating your day to day work.

How business decisions are made

As a confirmation of the study by Hofstede in the 5-D Model, the comparative study management styles in Europe by Cranfield showed that France’s management scores highly on Uncertainty Avoidance and Power Distance. It is very unique in Europe and is termed “management from the distance”. There is a desire for independence but with well-defined bureaucratic boundaries, which leads to ineffective implementation of change strategies; and strained internal relationships (Myers et al., 1995). As a new manager, be ready to make most of the final decisions but it’s your prerogative to consult subordinates as this is not the norm.

How negotiations and communication is conducted

There is a separation of business and personal life so a new manager you need to be formal and courteous without breaking the boundary. A high degree of patience is needed during negotiations as the French take time before accepting a proposal. They have keen attention to detail in new ideas and appreciate seeing how the suggestions you make benefit the company or individual. Some employees may be outspoken while others are submissive to orders from the executive team (Kwintessential, 2013). Based on the global culture at GeekChic, you will be expected to adapt to the uniqueness of Paris.

 Conclusion

The cross-cultural management factors that are important before you move to Paris are the eeconomic interconnectedness, the complex and dynamic work environment and effect of information technology in dealings with people. A new executive must be ready to manage in a truly global scale. “International management and the need to understand management within a global context has grown significantly in importance.” (Quacquarelli N, QS Global 200 Business Schools Report, 2012).s

Recommendations

First, since you have succeeded in the America environment with flexibility and adaptability, you will be successful in Paris. This will create a truly international manager. Secondly, prepare adequately on your transition to Paris since it is largely different from the USA where you are familiar. Find adequate information on areas such as communication and negotiation styles, decision making, values and leadership as well as management in a global context. Thirdly, maintain a positive attitude on the people and situations you will face. The way they behave may be quite different from what you are used to in USA but know that they mean no harm. Harness the differences to create a diverse team which has unique strengths and abilities.


 

Appendix

Here are definitions of the 5 dimensions as defined by Hofstede in his website:

Power Distance – “the extent to which the less powerful members of institutions and

organizations within a country expect and accept that power is distributed unequally.”

Individualism – “the degree of interdependence a society maintains among its members.”

Masculinity/Femininity – “the motivation of people; wanting to be the best (masculine) or

liking what you do (feminine).”

Uncertainty Avoidance – “the extent to which the members of a culture feel threatened by

ambiguous or unknown situations and have created beliefs and institutions that try to avoid

these.”

Long Term Orientation – “the extent to which a society shows a pragmatic future-oriented

perspective rather than a conventional historical short-term point of view.”

 


 

References

Arvey, R. (2009). “Why Face-to-Face Business Meetings Matter”. The Hilton Family. 1 (1), p3-16.

Books and Journals

Burt, R., R. Hogarth, and C. Michaud. (2000). The social capital of French and American

managers. Organization Science 11 (2): 123-147.

Fukuyama, F. (1995). Trust: The social virtues and the creation of prosperity. New York: The Free Press.

Inzerilli, G. and A. Laurent. (1983). Managerial views of organization structure in France

and the USA. International Studies in Management and Organization XIII (1-2): 97-118

Holden, N. J. (2002). Cross-cultural management: A knowledge management perspective. London: Prentice Hall.

Myers, A., A. Kakabadse, T. McMahon, and G. Spony. (1995). Top management styles in

Europe: Implications for business and cross-national teams. European Business Journal 7

(1): 17-28.

Schoenberg, R., N. Denuelle, and D. Noburn. (1995). National conflict within European

alliances. European Business Journal 7 (1): 8-16.

Quacquarelli N, (2012). QS Global 200 Business Schools Report: Intelligence Unit: 1

Internet Resources

The Hofstede Centre; National Culture in Countries. (2013). Available:

 www.geert-hofstede.com/france.html Last accessed 17th November 2013.

Journal of International Business and Economy (2011) 12(1): 13-33 (21 pages) Available:

http://www.i-jibe.org/achive/2011spring/2011_12(1)-2.pdf Last accessed 17th November 2013.

Insight Vacations (2013). Travel Tips. Available:

 http://www.insightvacations.com/za/travel-tips/france. Last accessed 16th November 2013.

Hans Roslig and the magic washing machine. (2010). Ted Talks Available: http://www.ted.com/talks/hans_rosling_and_the_magic_washing_machine.html. Last accessed 17th November 2013.

The Smart settle and a Beautiful mind. (2011). Smart settle. Available: http://www.smartsettle.com/home/resources/articles/smartsettle-and-a-beautiful-mind/. Last accessed 16th November 2013

Employment Information, Management Culture. ( 2012). Expatica. Available:

http://www.expatica.com/fr/employment/employment_information/Management-Culture-in-France_13438.html. Last accessed 16th November 2013

A Short Guide to the French Political System. (2013). French Political System. Available:

http://www.rogerdarlington.me.uk/Frenchpoliticalsystem.html Last accessed 18th November 2013

Mapping Paris: Technological Advances. Available: https://www.mtholyoke.edu/courses/rschwart/hist255-s01/mapping-paris/Cultural_Paris_Technology.html Last accessed 18th November 2013

 

 

 

 

Geek chic

International Management

 

Course Name:

Cross-cultural management; a case of GeekChic

 

Report on cross-cultural international management in Paris, France

 

Individual Assignment for Dr Nathalie van Meurs

 

Student:

Student Number:

Table OF CONTENTS

Introduction 

Background on GeekChic       

Macro-level facts of Paris, France

Financial and Economic Climate     

Geography of Paris  

Social Climate          

Political climate     

Technological climate         

Analysis of French Culture based on Hofstede’s 5-D Model               

Power Distance:        

Individualism             

Masculinity/Femininity        

Uncertainty avoidance        

Long term orientation          

Analysis of business and management culture in France      

Key issues related to management culture in Paris, France               

Cultural intelligence in dealing with globalization         

How business decisions are made      

How negotiations and communication is conducted              

Conclusion and recommendations     

Recommendations    

Appendix               

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Introduction

This report gives a cross-cultural perspective of Paris and France in general. It seeks to offer management advice, specifically cross-cultural training to a new manager about to be transferred to Paris, France as an international executive.

Background on GeekChic

According to Holden (2002), the key cross-cultural management competencies are participative competence, interactive translation, cross-cultural networking, collaborative cross-cultural learning, transfer of cross-cultural knowledge, experiences and values and creation of collaborative atmosphere.

As an executive, she needs to know the macro-level facts about Paris which will definitely affect her work and effect in GeekChic. This new executive, though well-performing and qualified for the international job has not had formal cross-cultural management training yet.

This is a global business so members of the staff will both include locals from France and those from other countries. The culture, the shared system of symbolic meanings has to be properly factored. The manager’s work is about dealing with people all the time. People’s conduct is influenced by the culture they know, in terms of politics, religion, sport among others.

Macro-level facts of Paris, France

Financial and Economic Climate

Paris is the capital of France, which is part of the larger European Union. T has a population of about 65 million. The GDP is $2.2 trillion, with a 1.7% growth and $35,156 per capita. The unemployment rate is around 10.6% while the FDI inflow of 40.9 billion. The major currency is the Euro, the major currency of the Eurozone. Here most credit cards are used. The USA Embassy is found on 2 avenue Gabriel 75382 Paris and can be contacted through Tel: +33(0) 1 43 12 22 22. The international telephone code is 00. At noon in Paris, the time in New York is 6.00am.

Geography of Paris

Climate is temperate in the North and continental in the North East, experiencing warm summers and colder winters. The south has a Mediterranean climate. There are four seasons in France, meaning one has to carefully consider clothing for different seasons; warm ones for winter and lighter ones for winter.

Social Climate

Socially, the form of greeting is handshaking but for familiar people kissing on both cheeks is practiced. The official language is French but Basque and Breton are also common languages.  It is important to note the shopping culture of shops closing at 12 noon to 2.30pm. In the restaurants two types of cuisine are available, ‘a la carte’, which is more expensive but wide choice and ‘le menu’ at fixed price much cheaper.

Political climate

France is ruled by a democratically elected president and prime minister who may or may not be from the same political party. The president is the head of state and resides in the Elysee Palace in Paris. The prime minister leads the government affairs. Arms of government are the executive, national assembly, senate and judiciary. French people are highly concerned about the leadership and actively participate in the elections with high voter turnout, demonstrated by about 78% in the presidential election conducted in 2012 (Roger D, 2013).

Technological climate

Paris is an industrialized city in Europe, well connected in terms of roads, railways systems and airlines. The mobile communication now operates on 3G networks. This almost matches what is in USA where you are more familiar so Paris will not present a significant shift in technology for you.

Analysis of French Culture based on Hofstede’s 5-D Model

The Hofstede comparison of France and USA demonstrates some differences in the 5-D Model Hofstede (1988), comparing France and USA, where the executive has been working and living.

Power Distance:

This is the extent to which power is distributed unequally and accepted by the less powerful members of a country’s organizations. France has a higher PDI value than USA; a score of 68 versus 40 respectively. Information flow is hierarchical and controlled by those in power. More formal attitudes exist towards managers and power is highly centralized( Hofstede, 1988). In the USA, emphasis on equal rights  for all means that even managers highly depend on expertise of the individual employees and teams, a major difference with France. As a manager coming from the USA to France, when making decisions you need to appreciate the increased distance when relating in the business context and concentration of power at the top.

Individualism

According to Hofstede, the levels of interdependence for members of the society are lower in France as compared to the USA. French people still look after themselves and their direct family, giving more identity as ‘I’ as opposed to ‘We’ but at a lower rate than the Americans. Work is contract based with keen focus on the task a similar thing to the USA. People have freedom to communicate and give their opinions, however divergent (Hofstede, 1988). It is important for you as new manager in Paris to allow your team members to air their opinions freely.

Masculinity/Femininity

With a low figure of 43, in comparison to the 62 for USA, the French value relationships at work, caring more for each other. They have a welfare system (securite sociale), have fewer working hours per week and 5 holidays a year, me meaning there is a value for quality of life. Managers need to support dialogue to solve conflicts. In the USA, people ‘live to work’, striving to the best, making them more masculine than France. Decisions made by you as an executive must be careful not to rub the employees the wrong way for example by asking to cut down the lunch hour break or extend the working hours per week. You need to appreciate the French culture of quality rest time as well as holidays.

Uncertainty avoidance

The level of society dealing with an unpredictable future is very high, meaning they have more teachings, trainings and research to make prediction more possible. Ambiguity increases stress and managers need to know that the people value a certain degree of structure, rules and security. This contrasts the American culture, where there is more flexibility for the unknown future. The Americans are more open to try new products and accept new ideas( Hofstede, 1988). As a new executive with a background from America, you need to allow the people you find at GeekChic in Paris a significant level of structure to enable them work comfortably without a high degree of uncertainty.

Long term orientation

Absolute truths, respect for traditions as societal guidelines stand out in France. Quarterly results are very important in business. Consumers are driven by instant gratification and social trends, focusing less on savings. Self-reliance, and personal achievement are valued, hence managers being evaluated on short term results( Hofstede, 1988). This value of 39 is slightly is higher than the USA value of 29 but not significantly different. Your role as new executive will be largely to influence the people you find at the organization and those who join later to focus more on the impact of the long-term on their day to day work. You need to help them focus on the future while still enjoying the moment which is what they are used to.

Analysis of business and management culture in France

Thorough understanding of the business and management culture in France is vital to your success as a new executive in the region. Your roles of planning, coordinating, organizing and controlling will be affected by the cultural context, highly different from what you are used to. Since the job entails dealing with people all the time, the cross culture must be appreciated. We believe you have the skill set of making presentations, critical reading, preparing report, in-depth analysis of results as well as facilitating collaborative group discussions.

Key issues related to management culture in Paris, France

Cultural intelligence in dealing with globalization

Commonly, note that management in France is highly ordered, paternalistic, and rigid. There are mostly clear social boundaries separating insiders and outsiders. According to Fukuyama (2000), the French prefer centralized, hierarchical and well organized authority. alleges that French managers as desirous of more power at the top and discontent with uncertainty about technology and legal matters (Schoenberget al.,1995). As a manager moving to France, it is important to be aware that the situation is different form American managers who prefer face-to-face interactions and in a way prefer formality and bureaucracy (Burt, 2000).

There is a high value for vertical hierarchical lines in work interactions which is different from what Americans generally value (Inzerilli and Laurent, 1983) It is good to be prepared for a more tight scope of operation in your new work as an executive, since your secretary is expected to play a key role in coordinating your day to day work.

How business decisions are made

As a confirmation of the study by Hofstede in the 5-D Model, the comparative study management styles in Europe by Cranfield showed that France’s management scores highly on Uncertainty Avoidance and Power Distance. It is very unique in Europe and is termed “management from the distance”. There is a desire for independence but with well-defined bureaucratic boundaries, which leads to ineffective implementation of change strategies; and strained internal relationships (Myers et al., 1995). As a new manager, be ready to make most of the final decisions but it’s your prerogative to consult subordinates as this is not the norm.

How negotiations and communication is conducted

There is a separation of business and personal life so a new manager you need to be formal and courteous without breaking the boundary. A high degree of patience is needed during negotiations as the French take time before accepting a proposal. They have keen attention to detail in new ideas and appreciate seeing how the suggestions you make benefit the company or individual. Some employees may be outspoken while others are submissive to orders from the executive team. Kwintessential, (2013). Based on the global culture at GeekChic, you will be expected to adapt to the uniqueness of Paris.

Conclusion and recommendations

The cross-cultural management factors that are important before you move to Paris are the eeconomic interconnectedness, the complex and dynamic work environment and effect of information technology in dealings with people. A new executive must be ready to manage in a truly global scale. “International management and the need to understand management within a global context has grown significantly in importance.” (Quacquarelli N, QS Global 200 Business Schools Report, 2012).

Recommendations

First, since you have succeeded in the America environment with flexibility and adaptability, you will be successful in Paris. This will create a truly international manager. Secondly, prepare adequately on your transition to Paris since it is largely different from the USA where you are familiar. Find adequate information on areas such as communication and negotiation styles, decision making, values and leadership as well as management in a global context. Thirdly, maintain a positive attitude on the people and situations you will face. The way they behave may be quite different from what you are used to in USA but know that they mean no harm. Harness the differences to create a diverse team which has unique strengths and abilities.

Appendix

Here are definitions of the 5 dimensions as defined by Hofstede in his website:

Power Distance – “the extent to which the less powerful members of institutions and

organizations within a country expect and accept that power is distributed unequally.”

Individualism – “the degree of interdependence a society maintains among its members.”

Masculinity/Femininity – “the motivation of people; wanting to be the best (masculine) or

liking what you do (feminine).”

Uncertainty Avoidance – “the extent to which the members of a culture feel threatened by

ambiguous or unknown situations and have created beliefs and institutions that try to avoid

these.”

Long Term Orientation – “the extent to which a society shows a pragmatic future-oriented

perspective rather than a conventional historical short-term point of view.”

This is a table from Hofstede’s website on the direct comparison of French and American Culture:

There is a significant contrast on Masculinity/Femininity between the two countries/territories. The Power Distance and Long Term Orientation is slightly higher in France. Uncertainty Avoidance is extremely high in France, not only when compared with USA but also globally. Individualism is lower in France.

References

Arvey, R. (2009). “Why Face-to-Face Business Meetings Matter”. The Hilton Family. 1 (1), p3-16.

Books and Journals

Burt, R., R. Hogarth, and C. Michaud. (2000). The social capital of French and American

managers. Organization Science 11 (2): 123-147.

Fukuyama, F. (1995). Trust: The social virtues and the creation of prosperity. New York: The Free

Press.

Inzerilli, G. and A. Laurent. (1983). Managerial views of organization structure in France

and the USA. International Studies in Management and Organization XIII (1-2): 97-118

Holden, N. J. (2002). Cross-cultural management: A knowledge management perspective. London: Prentice Hall.

Myers, A., A. Kakabadse, T. McMahon, and G. Spony. (1995). Top management styles in

Europe: Implications for business and cross-national teams. European Business Journal 7

(1): 17-28.

Schoenberg, R., N. Denuelle, and D. Noburn. (1995). National conflict within European

alliances. European Business Journal 7 (1): 8-16.

Quacquarelli N, (2012). QS Global 200 Business Schools Report: Intelligence Unit: 1

Internet Resources

The Hofstede Centre; National Culture in Countries. (2013). Available:

www.geert-hofstede.com/france.html Last accessed 17th November 2013.

Journal of International Business and Economy (2011) 12(1): 13-33 (21 pages) Available:

http://www.i-jibe.org/achive/2011spring/2011_12(1)-2.pdf Last accessed 17th November 2013.

Insight Vacations (2013). Travel Tips. Available:

http://www.insightvacations.com/za/travel-tips/france. Last accessed 16th November 2013.

Hans Roslig and the magic washing machine. (2010). Ted Talks Available: http://www.ted.com/talks/hans_rosling_and_the_magic_washing_machine.html. Last accessed 17th November 2013.

The Smart settle and a Beautiful mind. (2011). Smart settle. Available: http://www.smartsettle.com/home/resources/articles/smartsettle-and-a-beautiful-mind/. Last accessed 16th November 2013

Employment Information, Management Culture. ( 2012). Expatica. Available:

http://www.expatica.com/fr/employment/employment_information/Management-Culture-in-France_13438.html. Last accessed 16th November 2013

A Short Guide to the French Political System. (2013). French Political System. Available:

http://www.rogerdarlington.me.uk/Frenchpoliticalsystem.html Last accessed 18th November 2013

Mapping Paris: Technological Advances. Available: https://www.mtholyoke.edu/courses/rschwart/hist255-s01/mapping-paris/Cultural_Paris_Technology.html Last accessed 18th November 2013

Geekchic

International Management

 

Course Name:

Cross-cultural management; a case of GeekChic

 

Report on cross-cultural international management in Paris, France

 

Individual Assignment for Dr Nathalie van Meurs

 

Student:

Student Number:

 

 

Table OF CONTENTS

Introduction.. 3

Background on GeekChic.. 3

Macro-level facts of Paris, France.. 3

Financial and Economic Climate. 3

Geography of Paris. 4

Social Climate. 4

Political climate. 4

Technological climate. 5

Analysis of French Culture based on Hofstede’s 5-D Model.. 5

Power Distance: 5

Individualism.. 5

Masculinity/Femininity. 6

Uncertainty avoidance. 6

Long term orientation. 7

Analysis of business and management culture in France.. 7

Key issues related to management culture in Paris, France.. 7

Cultural intelligence in dealing with globalization. 7

How business decisions are made. 8

How negotiations and communication is conducted. 8

Conclusion and recommendations. 9

Recommendations. 9

Appendix.. 10

 

 


 

Introduction

This report gives a cross-cultural perspective of Paris and France in general. It seeks to offer management advice, specifically cross-cultural training to a new manager about to be transferred to Paris, France as an international executive.

Background on GeekChic

According to Holden (2002), the key cross-cultural management competencies are participative competence, interactive translation, cross-cultural networking, collaborative cross-cultural learning, transfer of cross-cultural knowledge, experiences and values and creation of collaborative atmosphere.

As an executive, she needs to know the macro-level facts about Paris which will definitely affect her work and effect in GeekChic. This new executive, though well-performing and qualified for the international job has not had formal cross-cultural management training yet.

This is a global business so members of the staff will both include locals from France and those from other countries. The culture, the shared system of symbolic meanings has to be properly factored. The manager’s work is about dealing with people all the time. People’s conduct is influenced by the culture they know, in terms of politics, religion, sport among others.

Macro-level facts of Paris, France

Financial and Economic Climate

Paris is the capital of France, which is part of the larger European Union. T has a population of about 65 million. The GDP is $2.2 trillion, with a 1.7% growth and $35,156 per capita. The unemployment rate is around 10.6% while the FDI inflow of 40.9 billion. The major currency is the Euro, the major currency of the Eurozone. Here most credit cards are used. The USA Embassy is found on 2 avenue Gabriel 75382 Paris and can be contacted through Tel: +33(0) 1 43 12 22 22. The international telephone code is 00. At noon in Paris, the time in New York is 6.00am.

Geography of Paris

Climate is temperate in the North and continental in the North East, experiencing warm summers and colder winters. The south has a Mediterranean climate. There are four seasons in France, meaning one has to carefully consider clothing for different seasons; warm ones for winter and lighter ones for winter.

Social Climate

Socially, the form of greeting is handshaking but for familiar people kissing on both cheeks is practiced. The official language is French but Basque and Breton are also common languages.  It is important to note the shopping culture of shops closing at 12 noon to 2.30pm. In the restaurants two types of cuisine are available, ‘a la carte’, which is more expensive but wide choice and ‘le menu’ at fixed price much cheaper.

Political climate

France is ruled by a democratically elected president and prime minister who may or may not be from the same political party. The president is the head of state and resides in the Elysee Palace in Paris. The prime minister leads the government affairs. Arms of government are the executive, national assembly, senate and judiciary. French people are highly concerned about the leadership and actively participate in the elections with high voter turnout, demonstrated by about 78% in the presidential election conducted in 2012 (Roger D, 2013).

Technological climate

Paris is an industrialized city in Europe, well connected in terms of roads, railways systems and airlines. The mobile communication now operates on 3G networks. This almost matches what is in USA where you are more familiar so Paris will not present a significant shift in technology for you.

Analysis of French Culture based on Hofstede’s 5-D Model

The Hofstede comparison of France and USA demonstrates some differences in the 5-D Model Hofstede (1988), comparing France and USA, where the executive has been working and living.

Power Distance:

This is the extent to which power is distributed unequally and accepted by the less powerful members of a country’s organizations. France has a higher PDI value than USA; a score of 68 versus 40 respectively. Information flow is hierarchical and controlled by those in power. More formal attitudes exist towards managers and power is highly centralized. Hofstede (1988). In the USA, emphasis on equal rights  for all means that even managers highly depend on expertise of the individual employees and teams, a major difference with France. As a manager coming from the USA to France, when making decisions you need to appreciate the increased distance when relating in the business context and concentration of power at the top.

Individualism

According to Hofstede, the levels of interdependence for members of the society are lower in France as compared to the USA. French people still look after themselves and their direct family, giving more identity as ‘I’ as opposed to ‘We’ but at a lower rate than the Americans. Work is contract based with keen focus on the task a similar thing to the USA. People have freedom to communicate and give their opinions, however divergent( Hofstede, 1988). It is important for you as new manager in Paris to allow your team members to air their opinions freely.

Masculinity/Femininity

With a low figure of 43, in comparison to the 62 for USA, the French value relationships at work, caring more for each other. They have a welfare system (securite sociale), have fewer working hours per week and 5 holidays a year, me meaning there is a value for quality of life. Managers need to support dialogue to solve conflicts. In the USA, people ‘live to work’, striving to the best, making them more masculine than France. Decisions made by you as an executive must be careful not to rub the employees the wrong way for example by asking to cut down the lunch hour break or extend the working hours per week. You need to appreciate the French culture of quality rest time as well as holidays.

Uncertainty avoidance

The level of society dealing with an unpredictable future is very high, meaning they have more teachings, trainings and research to make prediction more possible. Ambiguity increases stress and managers need to know that the people value a certain degree of structure, rules and security. This contrasts the American culture, where there is more flexibility for the unknown future. The Americans are more open to try new products and accept new ideas (Hofstede, 1988). As a new executive with a background from America, you need to allow the people you find at GeekChic in Paris a significant level of structure to enable them work comfortably without a high degree of uncertainty.

Long term orientation

Absolute truths, respect for traditions as societal guidelines stand out in France. Quarterly results are very important in business. Consumers are driven by instant gratification and social trends, focusing less on savings. Self-reliance, and personal achievement are valued, hence managers being evaluated on short term results. (Hofstede, 1988). This value of 39 is slightly is higher than the USA value of 29 but not significantly different. Your role as new executive will be largely to influence the people you find at the organization and those who join later to focus more on the impact of the long-term on their day to day work. You need to help them focus on the future while still enjoying the moment which is what they are used to.

This is a graph from Hofstede’s website on the direct comparison of French and American Culture:

 

 

There is a significant contrast on Masculinity/Femininity between the two countries/territories. The Power Distance and Long Term Orientation is slightly higher in France. Uncertainty Avoidance is extremely high in France, not only when compared with USA but also globally. Individualism is lower in France.

 Analysis of business and management culture in France

Thorough understanding of the business and management culture in France is vital to your success as a new executive in the region. Your roles of planning, coordinating, organizing and controlling will be affected by the cultural context, highly different from what you are used to. Since the job entails dealing with people all the time, the cross culture must be appreciated. We believe you have the skill set of making presentations, critical reading, preparing report, in-depth analysis of results as well as facilitating collaborative group discussions.

Key issues related to management culture in Paris, France

Cultural intelligence in dealing with globalization

Commonly, note that management in France is highly ordered, paternalistic, and rigid. There are mostly clear social boundaries separating insiders and outsiders. According to Fukuyama (2000), the French prefer centralized, hierarchical and well organized authority. alleges that French managers as desirous of more power at the top and discontent with uncertainty about technology and legal matters (Schoenberget al.,1995). As a manager moving to France, it is important to be aware that the situation is different form American managers who prefer face-to-face interactions and in a way prefer formality and bureaucracy (Burt, 2000).

There is a high value for vertical hierarchical lines in work interactions which is different from what Americans generally value (Inzerilli and Laurent, 1983) It is good to be prepared for a more tight scope of operation in your new work as an executive, since your secretary is expected to play a key role in coordinating your day to day work.

How business decisions are made

As a confirmation of the study by Hofstede in the 5-D Model, the comparative study management styles in Europe by Cranfield showed that France’s management scores highly on Uncertainty Avoidance and Power Distance. It is very unique in Europe and is termed “management from the distance”. There is a desire for independence but with well-defined bureaucratic boundaries, which leads to ineffective implementation of change strategies; and strained internal relationships (Myers et al., 1995). As a new manager, be ready to make most of the final decisions but it’s your prerogative to consult subordinates as this is not the norm.

How negotiations and communication is conducted

There is a separation of business and personal life so a new manager you need to be formal and courteous without breaking the boundary. A high degree of patience is needed during negotiations as the French take time before accepting a proposal. They have keen attention to detail in new ideas and appreciate seeing how the suggestions you make benefit the company or individual. Some employees may be outspoken while others are submissive to orders from the executive team (Kwintessential, 2013). Based on the global culture at GeekChic, you will be expected to adapt to the uniqueness of Paris.

 Conclusion

The cross-cultural management factors that are important before you move to Paris are the eeconomic interconnectedness, the complex and dynamic work environment and effect of information technology in dealings with people. A new executive must be ready to manage in a truly global scale. “International management and the need to understand management within a global context has grown significantly in importance.” (Quacquarelli N, QS Global 200 Business Schools Report, 2012).s

Recommendations

First, since you have succeeded in the America environment with flexibility and adaptability, you will be successful in Paris. This will create a truly international manager. Secondly, prepare adequately on your transition to Paris since it is largely different from the USA where you are familiar. Find adequate information on areas such as communication and negotiation styles, decision making, values and leadership as well as management in a global context. Thirdly, maintain a positive attitude on the people and situations you will face. The way they behave may be quite different from what you are used to in USA but know that they mean no harm. Harness the differences to create a diverse team which has unique strengths and abilities.


 

Appendix

Here are definitions of the 5 dimensions as defined by Hofstede in his website:

Power Distance – “the extent to which the less powerful members of institutions and

organizations within a country expect and accept that power is distributed unequally.”

Individualism – “the degree of interdependence a society maintains among its members.”

Masculinity/Femininity – “the motivation of people; wanting to be the best (masculine) or

liking what you do (feminine).”

Uncertainty Avoidance – “the extent to which the members of a culture feel threatened by

ambiguous or unknown situations and have created beliefs and institutions that try to avoid

these.”

Long Term Orientation – “the extent to which a society shows a pragmatic future-oriented

perspective rather than a conventional historical short-term point of view.”

 


 

References

Arvey, R. (2009). “Why Face-to-Face Business Meetings Matter”. The Hilton Family. 1 (1), p3-16.

Books and Journals

Burt, R., R. Hogarth, and C. Michaud. (2000). The social capital of French and American

managers. Organization Science 11 (2): 123-147.

Fukuyama, F. (1995). Trust: The social virtues and the creation of prosperity. New York: The Free Press.

Inzerilli, G. and A. Laurent. (1983). Managerial views of organization structure in France

and the USA. International Studies in Management and Organization XIII (1-2): 97-118

Holden, N. J. (2002). Cross-cultural management: A knowledge management perspective. London: Prentice Hall.

Myers, A., A. Kakabadse, T. McMahon, and G. Spony. (1995). Top management styles in

Europe: Implications for business and cross-national teams. European Business Journal 7

(1): 17-28.

Schoenberg, R., N. Denuelle, and D. Noburn. (1995). National conflict within European

alliances. European Business Journal 7 (1): 8-16.

Quacquarelli N, (2012). QS Global 200 Business Schools Report: Intelligence Unit: 1

Internet Resources

The Hofstede Centre; National Culture in Countries. (2013). Available:

 www.geert-hofstede.com/france.html Last accessed 17th November 2013.

Journal of International Business and Economy (2011) 12(1): 13-33 (21 pages) Available:

http://www.i-jibe.org/achive/2011spring/2011_12(1)-2.pdf Last accessed 17th November 2013.

Insight Vacations (2013). Travel Tips. Available:

 http://www.insightvacations.com/za/travel-tips/france. Last accessed 16th November 2013.

Hans Roslig and the magic washing machine. (2010). Ted Talks Available: http://www.ted.com/talks/hans_rosling_and_the_magic_washing_machine.html. Last accessed 17th November 2013.

The Smart settle and a Beautiful mind. (2011). Smart settle. Available: http://www.smartsettle.com/home/resources/articles/smartsettle-and-a-beautiful-mind/. Last accessed 16th November 2013

Employment Information, Management Culture. ( 2012). Expatica. Available:

http://www.expatica.com/fr/employment/employment_information/Management-Culture-in-France_13438.html. Last accessed 16th November 2013

A Short Guide to the French Political System. (2013). French Political System. Available:

http://www.rogerdarlington.me.uk/Frenchpoliticalsystem.html Last accessed 18th November 2013

Mapping Paris: Technological Advances. Available: https://www.mtholyoke.edu/courses/rschwart/hist255-s01/mapping-paris/Cultural_Paris_Technology.html Last accessed 18th November 2013

 

 

 

 

Advanced Database Development

 

 

 

 

Introduction

This document presents a design and implementation of a database system for a small bookshop. The document contains requirement specifications, database table design, implementation using access database, database optimization report, a number of queries and design of the user interface.

Requirement specification

Table/entity

attributes

Primary key

Foreign key

Book

Book_id, title, author, publisher, publication date, edition, cost, retail_price, rating_id

Book_id

Rating_id

Rating

Rating_id, rating

Rating_id

 

Author

Author_id, fname,lname,dob, death_date, desctiption

Author_id

 

Book Author

Book_id, author_id

Book_id, author_id

Book_id, author_id

Employee

Emp_no, fname, lname, address, phone_no, dob, hire_date, position_id

Emp_no

position_id

Position

position_id, position, job_description

position_id

 

Customer

Customer_id, fname, lname, tell_no, mailing_address

Customer_id

 

Order

Order_no, emp_no, customer_id, date_sold, selling_price, del_pickup_date, payment_method_id, status_id

Order_no

customer_id, payment_method_id, status_id

Status

status_id, status

status_id

 

Payment_method

payment_method_id, method

payment_method_id

 

Book_order

Order_no, book_id,

Order_no, book_id,

Order_no, book_id,

 

 

Database Design

 

 

The diagram shows an Entity relationship diagram developed for this scenario. In establishing relationships between tables, referential integrity was enforced with various options for cascading and deleting if the primary table changed. This will ensure data integrity.

 

 

 

 

 

Query to retrieve a given order with all its information

SELECT Order.order_no, Order.sale_date, Book.publisher, Book_Order.selling_price, Customer.fname, Employee.fname

FROM Employee INNER JOIN (Customer INNER JOIN (Book INNER JOIN ([Order] INNER JOIN Book_Order ON Order.order_no = Book_Order.order_no) ON Book.Book_ID = Book_Order.Book_id) ON Customer.customer_id = Order.customer_id) ON Employee.emp_no = Order.emp_no;

 

Query to retrieve book and their corresponding authors

 

SELECT Book.Book_ID, Book.title, Author.fname, Author.lname, Book.publication_date

FROM Book INNER JOIN (Author INNER JOIN Book_Author ON Author.author_id = Book_Author.Author_id) ON Book.Book_ID = Book_Author.Book_Id;

 

Query to view all books purchased by a given customer and who served them

 

SELECT Customer.customer_id, Customer.fname, Customer.lname, Book.title, Order.sale_date

FROM (Customer INNER JOIN [Order] ON Customer.customer_id = Order.customer_id) INNER JOIN (Book INNER JOIN Book_Order ON Book.Book_ID = Book_Order.Book_id) ON Order.order_no = Book_Order.order_no;

 

 

IM2043 INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY PLANNING AND INFRASTRUCTURE

                                                               

 

 

 

 

IM2043 INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY PLANNING AND INFRASTRUCTURE

 

TITTLE:                            GROUP ASSIGNMENT.

 

MODULE LEADER:       RIYAZ AHAMED A.H.

 

GROUP MEMBERS:      ODUNLAMI OLADAYO MICHEAL                 1052174

 


Table of Contents

Chapter 1 Introduction. 3

HISTORY. 3

MISSION STATEMENT. 3

CORPORATE PURPOSE OF UNILEVER. 4

UNILEVER BRANDS. 4

Food Brands. 4

Home Care Brands. 5

Personal Care Brands. 6

Chapter 2 SWOT ANALYSIS. 7

STRENGTH. 7

WEAKNESSES. 8

OPPORTUNITIES. 9

THREATS. 9

Chapter 3 CRITICAL SWOT ISSUE. 10

Economic Situation. 10

Chapter 4 ALTERNATIVES. 11

Competition. 11

Market Evaluation. 11

Customer Evaluation. 12

Chapter 5 INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY INVESTMENT PLAN.. 13

Chapter 6 MANAGEMENT CHALLENGES AND LATEST BUSINESS TRANSFORMATION.. 14

Chapter 7 CONCLUSION.. 15

Chapter 8 REFRENCES. 16

 


Chapter 1             Introduction

HISTORY

    The Unilever story began in the 1890s, when William Hesketh Lever founder of Lever Bros wrote down his ideas for Sunlight Soap – his revolutionary new product that helped popularise cleanliness and hygiene in Victorian England. The object were ‘to make cleanliness commonplace; to lessen work for women; to foster health and contribute to personal attractiveness, so that life may be more enjoyable and rewarding for the people who use our products.

    Over time, the Unilever brand portfolio has evolved. At the very beginning of the 21st century, its Path to Growth strategy focused on global high-potential brands and its Vitality mission, brought about a new phase of development. More than ever, brands are helping people ‘feel good, look good and get more out of life’.

    Building on this heritage, Unilever’s priorities now inspire people to take small everyday actions that can in the long run make a big difference for the world, starting from laundry brands that help minimise wasted water and packaging to nutritious, easily prepared and affordable meals and snacks.

   The 21st century also saw the launch of a vision ‘Path to Growth’, which comprises of a five year strategic plan, and in 2004 it further sharpened its focus or target on the needs of 21st century consumers with its Vitality mission. The in 2009, Unilever announced its new corporate vision – working to create a better future every day with brands that help people look good, feel good and get more out of life.

MISSION STATEMENT

   To add vitality to life, we meet everyday needs for nutrition; hygiene and personal care with brands that help people looks good, feel and get more out of life.”

 

CORPORATE PURPOSE OF UNILEVER

    The corporate purpose of Unilever states that “the only way to achieve sustainable growth and long-term value creation is to adopt the highest standards of corporate behaviour towards all their stakeholders.” It further states that to succeed it requires “the highest standards of corporate behaviour towards everyone they work with, the communities they touch, and the environment on which they have an impact.”

UNILEVER BRANDS

The Unilever brands are divided into three major categories and they are;

  • Food Brands.
  • Personal Care Brands.
  • Home Care Brands.

 

Food Brands

 

  • Becel Flora
  • Bertolli     

 

  • Blue Band  

 

 

  • Heartbrand  

 

  • Hellmann’s Amora

 

  • Knorr       

 

 

  • Lipton     

Home Care Brands

 

  • Cif     

 

  • Comfort  

 

 

  • Domestos  

 

  • Omo       

 

 

  • Radiant 

 

  • Sunlight  

 

 

  • Surf      

Personal Care Brands

 

  • Axe                                                *   Brylcreem    

 

 

  • Dove                                               *   Fissan     

 

 

  • Lifebouy                                         *     Lux         

 

  • Pond’s                                             *   Close Up 

 

 

  • St Ives                                             *   Vaseline     

 

Chapter 2 SWOT ANALYSIS

In SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats) analysis, we look at the company as a business unit to identify her strengths and weaknesses. Secondly, a review of the environment in which business unit operates to identify the opportunities presented by that environment and threats posed by the same environment.

STRENGTH 

Unilever Plc is a company with global presence. The company has a strong brand portfolio, good relationships, and strong alliances with her numerous retailers across the world. The company boasts of strong roots in all most all local markets and know-how of the consumer culture. Some of her strengths are:

  • Market Size:  According to the 2004 market analysis, the company enjoys 40-45% of the international market share. With such a market share the company can be able to
  • Brand Loyalty: The Company enjoys massive loyalty on her products like cleaning and food products. The company loyal consumers rarely change to using alternative products, while attracting more prospectus customers.
  • Numerous Brands: The Company has over more than 400 brands. They can be categorised under food and home, and Personal care products. These products have been known to be used by people of all kinds and social and economic status.
  • Product Familiarity: Being a market leader, her products can be easily be identified and associated with her customers. This has made it sale more of her products more than any other of her competitors.
  • Multi-national managerial Structure: The Company has over 33 nationalities in her 100 top managers. This multi-cultural top leadership has made the company remain a market leader as it is able to take care of the needs of all her customers from divergent cultures. The top management is composed of 50% of people from the developing world and 40% women. These are two major groups that drive the markets.

 

WEAKNESSES

  • High Cost: The Company’s brands have shot the running costs especially advertisements. This is due to the competition it faces from her competitors. For her to remain competitive, the company is incurring more costs to advertise, do research to remain a market leader.
  • Poor Performance: On a general analysis the company is doing good, a close analysis of the individual products reports the opposite. Some of her products have been struggling in the market due to competition, new products, and cheaper alternatives to the consumers.
  • Brand Competition: There has been an internal competition between some of her products. The company is known to be having several brands of the same product like bathing soap. These products compete against each other for the same market.
  • Complex Organizational Structure: The Company has one of the most diverse and multicultural top management teams. However, it is also known to have a complex organizational structure that hinders and slows the process of decision making, strategic goals, and market targets among others. With so many managers, the company has incurred so many costs in terms of wages and remunerations.
  • Women Work Force Increase: The Company should heed the global call of employing more women in top management slots. Women have been known to be powerful marketers and key drivers behind the success of any company.
  • Globalisation: With the advent of internet, the company should use this platform to get to more customers and maintain her market share. Globalization has also led to culture awareness especially on the food products. The company should try and introduce some of her Europe products to Africa, and Asia among others.
  • Competition: The Company is facing competition from her ever increasing competitions in all her products. Some of the competitors are local, while others are international. Local competitors have posed more threat to the company than international. 
  • Product Awareness: There has been an increased health concerns on some of her products. This is so common on food products. More and more people are avoiding meal replacements to embracing healthy diets. This has seen the consumption rate of some of her food products reduce significantly.
  • Economic Situation: With the recent recession, more people are still unemployed this reduces the consumption power. This has subsequently affected her volume of sales at both local and international market.

OPPORTUNITIES

THREATS

Chapter 3 CRITICAL SWOT ISSUE

With a clearly and comprehensive SWOT analysis, it has been seen that despite the company enjoying the greatest share of the world market, they are a number of pertinent issues that cannot be ignores. The company is facing serious challenges to remain a market leader, maintain her loyal customers and attract more prospective clientele. Below are some of the most pertinent issues that the company should handle:

Economic Situation

The world has recently witnessed economic recession; this has led to many people loosing employment. Recession also reduced the spending power of government, organization and individual people. The lending power and consumption power of most citizens reduced. Most of the people preferred basic needs over other products.

The effects of recession on most companies are still felt. The company recorded a significant reduction in the volume of sales per year. The effects were more negative on products that are considered not basic. These products recorded losses and led to the company making losses in some products and a significant reduction in profits made.

The company should itself from such events to maintain constant flow of income. The company should concentrate more on he basic needs, expand her markets to cater for people of all social and economic spheres and create products that meet the local needs and wants and culture.

 

 

Chapter 4 ALTERNATIVES

Competition

The company is facing stiff competitions, from at both the international and local front. The competition comes in terms of the price, quantity, and quality of the products, and alternatives products among others.  Below are some of the issues the company should address for it to have a competitive edge over competitors:

Market Evaluation

 Although the company enjoys massive international competition, it faces a number of challenges to maintain her market share. The company should do a more critical analysis of her competitors, consumers and the market. This will enable it come up with products that will meet the consumer’s needs and wants. The markets have been dynamic, and consumer trends are frequently changing. With a close engagement with her customer via the use of the internet, social media and emails; the company can be able to do online surveys and to know what her customers want. The company can also have a social network platform to engage with her customers and listen to there voices. This will enable it understand more the needs of her customers, what her competitors are doing and solutions to some of her problems. The company should be able to set up an IT desk to promptly attend to her clients issues and solve some of their problems online.

After collecting all this information, the business will be able to develop a stronger brand and engage on the brand building processes. This will make it slowly but gradually regian her maket share despite the recent competition.

Customer Evaluation

The company enjoys a strong global network across the globe. Its products reach her client via her multinational retailers, wholesaler and distributors to independent small shops and supermarkets. The company should target to maintain the existing customers and attract more prospective clients. This will increase her market share and significantly increase her volume of sales, translating into more profits.

The company should major on customer satisfaction services, improved customer care, more discounts, and affordable rates; meet local needs and better and quality products than her competitor. To reach to an international audience and achieve the aforementioned tagets, the company should employ IT approaches and technologies. This will enable it to correctly know the needs of her multi-cultural clients.

With the recent advent of the social media, the company should provide a platform fo her customer to air out their issues. The company should also set up 24/7 customer care agencies that ae toll free, that are able to attend to all the customers despite the geographical challenges and distance. The company should consider investing in mobile platforms and web platform, that will enable it reach out to more clients. 

To have a sustainable and constant client base, the company should partner with more local retailers; the company will be able to reach more clients.

Chapter 5 INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY INVESTMENT PLAN

    The objective of ITIP is to provide a sort of strategic planning process for technology investments to guarantee success in a global environment continuous changing business needs and technology. The result is to make sure that all technology investments are directed at strategic objectives of company’s product improvement or over all sale increase.

The plan should be an effective IT investment plan that should avoid over/under investment in the technology. According to (Mark 2012), the plan should have regular reviews; keep an eye on technology, and continuous planning. The key drivers to a successful plan are upfront planning, continuous review and updating of the plan and post-implementation review.

The plan should consider the company investing in but not limited to:

  • Consolidation of data centres,
  • Open more customer care centres,
  • Energy reduction targets,
  •  New procurement guidelines,
  • Recycling and reuse of equipment,
  • Mobile and Web Platforms,
  • Investment on the social media Platforms, and
  • Linking all the major retail outlets via the internet

   This helped it save over €6 million a year in Europe by the year 2010. It has also recently installed advanced video-conferencing facilities which have already reduced its footprint by an estimated 1700 tonnes of CO2, thereby saving €5 million in travel costs alone.   Such facilities will reduce costs related to advertisements, customer and market surveys, communication, and reduce the time of decision making among others.

Chapter 6 MANAGEMENT CHALLENGES AND LATEST BUSINESS TRANSFORMATION

The company is one the leading suppliers of personal care and food products across the globe, it’s a leading market share and with well known brands.  Despite all these positives, the company faces a number of challenges namely:

  • Managing its global supply base: To maintain constant supply of goods and services to her clients across the globe is tedious and a very complex process. With the recent recession, the company closed some of shops due to reduced purchasing power. This has become a challenge as the few manufacturing points that remained cannot meet the demands of the current demand after recession.  There have also been a number of cases where some local shops closed due to mismanagement.
  • Supporting sustainable Growth: The Company launched a Sustainable Living Plan in November 2010. The programme is designed to double sales and halve the environmental impact of its products. There is also a commitment to improve the nutritional quality of its food products – with cuts in salt, saturated fats, sugar and calories – and link more than 500,000 smallholder farmers and small scale distributors in developing countries to its supply chain.
  • Improving Accessibility and Management of Key Information: Unilever’s team of over 135 representatives experienced difficulties locating specific product details to answer consumers’ questions in an accurate and timely manner. Utilizing the Folio knowledge management tool, they were tasked with conducting lengthy searches, which often led to the dead-end response: “no search lists.”

Chapter 7 CONCLUSION

   Being a multinational, global and well know company, Unilever has over the years built a very solid consumer/customer trust in its highly valued globally used products or brands and so because of this, consumers around the world are guaranteed of a continuous production of quality and affordable household, personal and food brands.

       Like many other company around the world, Unilever has had its fair share of difficult times as regards to the global economic meltdown or recession that has troubled many industries, companies, organisations and even individuals for some time, but ‘it’ (UNILEVER) has bounced back with full vigour and determination to continue to produce quality and highly valued products, and because of this, its market share value has appreciated reasonably.

     Research has shown that there is at least one Unilever product in 8 of 10 households around the world, this simply supports the undeniable fact that Unilever rates very high in the aspect of consumer/customer satisfaction.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Chapter 8 REFRENCES

Anon (2004). World Economic Situation and Prospects 2004.: United Nations

Hawaii, SO 2012, ‘BUSINESS AND IT/IRM TRANSFORMATION PLAN’, State of Hawai, State of Hawai, State of Hawai, Hawai.

IBM 2011, ‘Strategy and planning for IT infrastructureoptimization’, IBM Global Services, IBM, United States of America, Newyork.

Mark, G 2012, Top 10 Hints for IT Transformation (Cont.): Plan at the Beginning, Middle and End of Projects, viewed 2 November 2013, < HYPERLINK “http://h30507.www3.hp.com/t5/Transforming-IT-Blog/Top-10-Hints-for-IT-Transformation-Cont-Plan-at-the-Beginning/ba-p/106737&#8221; \l “.UnTg_1P4Jxw” http://h30507.www3.hp.com/t5/Transforming-IT-Blog/Top-10-Hints-for-IT-Transformation-Cont-Plan-at-the-Beginning/ba-p/106737#.UnTg_1P4Jxw >.

tuuletin (2005). Marketing opportunities in digital media [online].. Available from: <http://www.gaumina.lt/tuuletin/index.

Unilever [online]. (2009). Available from: <http://www.unilever.com/investorrelations/share_price/default.aspx

Renewing Unilever: Transformation and Tradition’. Author: Geoffrey Jones

              Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA (October 20, 2005)

US, IDO 2011, IT Transformational Plan, viewed 18 November 2013, < HYPERLINK “http://www.slideshare.net/USInterior/it-transformation-plan&#8221; http://www.slideshare.net/USInterior/it-transformation-plan >.

 

 

History of Terrorism

Name

Instructor

Course

Date

History of Terrorism

Terrorism is a form of social and political violence that also includes other genres such as war, ethnic cleansing, and genocide. All these categories of violence are motivated by social or political reasons, but terrorism is unique in the sense that it is characterized by repeated incidents of violence that create widespread fear, insecurity, and a general feeling of mistrust in the society. Unlike the other forms of violence, terrorism is characterized by a dynamic interaction between individuals within and outside the government in pursuit of certain political ends. It is also a response to the controversy over what should be regarded as legitimate or illegitimate authority in periods of political vulnerability in a nation state (Miller 1). The nature of terrorism has changed throughout history due to various reasons such as technological changes, the identity of the perpetrators, the methods they employ, and the purpose of their actions. Despite this, mentalities and beliefs have remained constant throughout history. The phenomenon is anonymous in nature, unpredictable, and seeks to violate established norms (Hopkins 4). The contemporary era of terrorism began after the Second World War, although there were little acts of terrorism during the War and in the two decades that followed. However, the onset of the 1970s saw the renewal of terrorist operations perhaps because the world had become oblivious of the earlier history of the phenomenon (Laqueur 176). This period was marked by the emergence of Islamist terrorism and is the foundation of the modern day terrorist acts which are characterized by mass killings and suicide activities.

In the history of the contemporary terrorism, four years – 1968, 1979, 1983 and 2001 – stand out as key turning points. In 1968, two major groups were dominant with regards to terrorism. These groups include Latin American insurgents and the Palestinians. The former initiated what was commonly referred to as the urban guerrilla strategy while Palestinians exploited terrorism for publicity purposes. Notably, both groups engaged in terrorism as an alternative to the guerrilla warfare given that none of them was competent enough to undertake such kind of war (Chaliand and Blin 221). The year 1979 was another defining moment in the modern history of terrorism. In this year, the Iranian revolution marked the unprecedented success of the radical Shiite Islamism, a sect that had a direct influence just like Hezbolla in Lebanon, as well as indirect influence that enabled it to successfully facilitate the emergence and increased popularity of suicide bombings by promoting the traditional martyrdom ideology. The radical Sunni Islamists including Hamas and al-Qaeda were also inspired by this tradition which is perceived as a passport to paradise (Chaliand and Blin 321, 349).

Opposition to the Vietnam War in the 1960s led to the rise of “New Left” terrorism that was characterized by assassinations, kidnappings and bombings as perpetrators furthered certain political agendas under the Marxist-Leninist-Maoist ideology. The radical groups involved in this campaign had their origin in Europe, Latin America and the US, and were supported by the Palestine Liberation Organization (Shughart 25). In 1970, terrorist groups that shared the aforementioned ideology soon emerged in France, Italy and Belgium. One of such groups is the Italian Red Brigade. In its first 10 years of existence, the group succeeded in carrying out over 14,000 attacks which were mainly aimed at public officials such as judges (Shughart 26).

 It is important to note that in the early 1970s, terrorist groups which were not supported by states engaged in criminal activities to fund their activities. The Red Brigade was one of those groups that engaged in such activities like bank robberies and abductions in demand for ransoms. However, these groups later discovered the enormous potential of drug trafficking in financing terrorism, giving rise to a phenomenon known as narco-terrorism in the late 1970s and early 1980s. Narco-terrorism is still rampant in most countries that have a history of terrorism; for example, Columbia (Ganor 28).

There was an interesting turn of events that reinforced the growth of terrorism ideology in the 1970s. These events revolved around the strained relationship between the Soviet Union and the United States. The US saw the USSR’s intervention in Afghanistan in the late 1970s as a perfect opportunity to ensure that the Soviet Union suffered the same kind of defeat she experienced in Vietnam. With the financial and logistical support of Saudi Arabia and Pakistan, the US provided immense support to the Afghan resistance fighters. These developments created a platform for other radical Islamist groups from the Muslim world to participate in the jihad in various ways (Chaliand and Blin 221; Rapoport 63). Majority of these groups received both military and religious training on the battleground in order to support the Shiite revolution in Iran. The US’ direct involvement was evidenced by her support to Gulbuddin Hekmatyar, the leader of Hezbi Islami which was the most radical Islamist group at the time. Following this turn of events, the Soviet Union withdrew from Afghanistan after less than 10 years in the country. The Afghan mujahedeen, an extremist movement, used the Soviet’s withdrawal as a show of might, claiming that they are the ones who inflicted defeat on the Soviet army (Chaliand and Blin 222). Although this claim was baseless, it bolstered the group’s popularity in the world.

It was not until 1983 that the only significant terrorist attack during this period was waged. It was a series of suicide bombings that occurred in Beirut, killing 241 American Marines and dozens of French paratroopers. These attacks which were carried out by Hezbolla were a significant step in the development of international terrorism and prompted the withdrawal of all western troops from the Arab world. It is also regarded as the most important success of international terrorism at least in the period between 1968 and 2000 (Chaliand and Blin 222). These attacks also had a tremendous psychological impact that even exceeded the immediate consequences. Chaliand and Blin notes that the lesson learnt from these attacks could have informed Saddam Hussein’s decision not to back down before the onset of the first Gulf War (223).

Cases of international terrorism increased steadily from 1983, reaching a peak in 1985 when 481 incidents were recorded. However, the number of terrorism incidents took a downward trend in 1986 with only 78 terrorist attacks compared to 108 in the previous year. The total number of fatalities from such attacks also declined significantly from 800 in 1985, to 329 in 1986. However, two things remained fairly unchanged over the period despite the steady decline, that is, the proportion of attacks involving bombs and the proportion of attacks on American targets. Indeed, bombings constituted half of all terrorist attacks waged in 1986 and the pattern has remained fairly unchanged till today (Gardela and Hoffman 3). This is attributed to several factors which include the ease of manufacturing a crude bomb, planting it secretly, and fleeing before it explodes. In other words, manufacturing and making use of a crude bomb in attacks requires less expertise and logistics compared to other forms of terrorism such as kidnapping and assassination (Gardela and Hoffman 3).

The other two significant terrorist campaigns after 1983 are the 1986 and 1995 bloody attacks on France. The first attack was waged by the Iranians while the second one was waged by the Armed Islamic Group. Despite this, the period between 1991 and 1993 was a key turning point in the history of terrorism. This period corresponded to the changes that were going on in Afghanistan at the time. After being exploited by the US to inflict defeat on USSR, radical Islamism in the Arab world slowly evolved in pursuit of its own objectives. Partly due to the US war against Iraq in 1991, radical Islamism developed into a multi-headed and autonomous political-military movement. This saw the rise of jihad in the war-torn Algeria which later spread to Kahmir, Chechnya, and Bosnia in the wake of the ongoing war in these regions. Further to this, the first terrorist attack on the World Trade Centre in 1993 occurred. Although it did not achieve the intended results, the car bomb on WTC sent a strong message that the US had become a target of Islamist fighters – the same group she had used to inflict defeat on the Soviet Union (Chaliand and Blin 223).

Besides these series of events, other developments were taking place elsewhere in the world. The 1973 PLO terrorist attack on the Saudi embassy in Khartoum marked the beginning of strikes on foreign embassies (Rapoport 58). In 1982, Israel invaded Lebanon and destroyed PLO facilities that were used to offer training to terrorist groups. This move also increased the effectiveness of counterterrorist cooperation among the international community. There was open and formal cooperation between states with regards to counterterrorism efforts. For example, Britain and the US bombed Libya to compel her to desist from sponsoring terrorism. In addition, an arms embargo was imposed on Libya by the European Community in pursuit of the same objective (Rapoport 60).

Later on, the Islamist fighters waged another attack on American soldiers in Khobar, Saudi Arabia, killing 19 of them. However, the US underestimated the significance of this attack, only for the group to attack the US soldiers again in Dahran a year later. This followed Osama bin Laden’s call for the US withdrawal from what was regarded as the holy Saudi territory. From 1994-1996, the Taliban – a group that was created and backed by the US and Pakistan during the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan – became known as the masters of Afghanistan. This served as an opportunity for Osama bin Laden and Ahmed al-Zawahiri, an Egyptian, to impose their influence on the Taliban regime. With this as a platform, bin Laden vowed to fight the crusaders whom he termed as enemies of Islam. Consequently, the al-Qaeda terrorist group led by bin Laden attacked the US embassies in Kenya and Tanzania, killing and injuring both the locals and international citizens. Two years later, the USS Cole in the port of Aden was bombed (Chaliand and Blin 223).

The September 11 attacks marked the fourth evolutionary stage of contemporary terrorism. This incident of terrorism prompted the launching of the most significant counterterrorism operation in history. This operation was aimed at wiping out terrorists from their haven in Afghanistan and Iraq. Through the influence of civilians in the Pentagon, Bush, the US president at the time, went on the offensive. The US felt that time had come to finish what she termed as the “unfinished war” in Iraq. Hypothetically, the objective of the war, which was also supported by Great Britain, was to avert terrorism of mass destruction (Chaliand and Blin 328). Chaliand and Blin note that the US counterterrorism operations in Iraq and Afghanistan only served to engender more terrorism than before. Despite this, a similar campaign on Libya was fruitful. Meanwhile, radical Islamists continue to have political influence in such countries as Egypt, Algeria, and Saudi Arabia (Chaliand and Blin 328).

The September 11, 2001 attack which claimed 3,000 lives pointed to a highly organized terror network. As the deadliest terrorist attack ever waged, this incident evidenced al-Qaeda’s strategic skill. The group’s extraordinary success in this incident is attributed to three primary factors which include the perpetrator’s inexplicable desire for martyrdom, the use of aircrafts, and the diverse skills of the teams involved in planning and executing the attack (Chaliand and Blin 329). The use of aircrafts as missiles demonstrated the changing nature of international terrorism. Indeed, it is argued that the Mujahedeen-controlled missiles (aircrafts) matched the US technological prowess as evidenced in the use of cruise missiles during her invasion of Afghanistan. The attack signaled the beginning of a global war aimed at all enemy interests (Chaliand and Blin 329). For some time after the US raids on Afghanistan, it was believed that the radical mujahedeen movement was brought to an end. However, it is now evident that the movement is still in existence. Majority of its leaders were not killed in the aerial and ground military campaigns by the US as it was initially believed (Chaliand and Blin 335).

As a central aspect in the evolution of terrorism over the years, it is necessary to examine the roots of Islamic radicalism. Jihadist movement first emerged at the beginning of the 1970s. It was mainly inspired by the old ideology but it has now assumed an aberrant form whose basis is a mythicized perception of the original Islam. Global jihadists consider themselves as the only true believers of Islam (Hopkins 29). Indeed, the sect aims at manipulating the marginalized groups of Islamic societies (Chaliand and Blin 255). This ideology was embraced by a new generation of radical Islamists that aimed at reunifying the Muslim community and restoring transitional political and religious symbiosis. For example, the concept of jihad was distorted by Islamic extremists to include arbitrary use of violence (Hopkins 29). The new forms of jihadist include mujahedeen, al-Qaeda, Hezbollah and Hamas. The mujahedeen movement and al-Qaeda are the most extreme forms of modern terrorist groups. While the other two can negotiate with their opponents before waging attacks, mujahedeen and al-Qaeda strikes without warning (Chaliand and Blin 256). The unifying factor is that all these groups are motivated by distorted religious ideologies. Despite the many setbacks especially after September 11, 2001, al-Qaeda still has the capability to undertake attacks directly or indirectly (Ganor 29). Indirect attacks by al-Qaeda are evident in East Africa through the Somalia-based al-Shabaab.

As seen earlier, the US campaign on Afghanistan and Iraq did not succeed fully in halting terrorist activities. However, the operations sent a strong message that the global fight against terrorism was on, and the international community would not put up with radical Islamist groups. Under the Taliban rule, Afghanistan maintained the mujahedeen vision by serving as the movement’s training ground and headquarters, as well as a safe haven for the movement leaders. As such, Taliban-ruled Afghanistan was able to train a large contingent of militants who were used in the movement’s terrorism missions. The US invasion helped to disrupt the activities of the movement and remove the pro-terrorism regime from power. Accordingly, the number of the movement’s militants who had been trained prior to this disruption is declining. However, the 2003 Casablanca bombings is a clear indication that local commanders in various countries have the ability to recruit, train and persuade radicals to undertake suicide attacks without raising the attention of security forces. While the re-emergence of the tradition model of suicide-terrorists seems possible only in the medium-term, the short-term outcomes remain dangerous (Chaliand and Blin 349).

In the modern era, the threat of major terrorist attacks instigated through weapons of mass destruction (WMD) remains evident although it is greatly overlooked. Admittedly, the use of nuclear, radiological, biological and chemical weapons has not had much success in the contemporary era, but the ongoing technological and communication advances may increase terrorists’ capacity to employ such techniques in the near future (Chaliand and Blin 351). The attempted use of chlorine to cause mass casualties in Iraq in 2007 is a clear indication that radical Islamists are capable of employing WMD in their heinous acts (Ganor 32). However, it appears that alliances between various sects of terrorist groups will be the new trend in international terrorism in the near future. This implies that terrorism is a living phenomenon and as Laqueur observes, the phenomenon will recur at a later date even if is defeated today. It would be unwise to expect its disappearance from the world unless all forms of conflict are eliminated (Laqueur 194).

In conclusion, the phenomenon of terrorism has a long history. However, its character has undergone tremendous transformation in response to global changes in social, political, economic, and technological spheres. The modern era of terrorism can be traced back to the post-Second World War period. Although there were little terrorism activities between this period and the 1970s, the phenomenon was still evident. Contemporary terrorism is founded on four major turning points that occurred in 1968, 1979, 1983 and 2001. However, there are many activities that have occurred in between these years that have also shaped the evolution of this phenomenon in the contemporary world. An important aspect to note is that Islamic extremists have played a key role in shaping contemporary terrorism. These groups became more popular in the 1970s, and their significance in the world of terrorism is associated with the Soviet Union’s invasion of Afghanistan. More specifically, the US helped these groups to emerge and develop as she sought to use them in inflicting defeat on USSR. Although the US achieved her objective, the subsequent turn of events worked against her; the US became the major target following her invasion of Iraq. The 9/11 attacks on the US by suspected al-Qaeda militants was the most destructive form of terrorism ever waged by any group. The incident demonstrated the capacity of terrorist groups to wage large-scale attacks on any country. Although the US has made a big stride in suppressing these groups, they are still in existence and may still strike again. In future, weapons of mass destruction may be used successfully by terrorists, marking yet another turning point in the history of terrorism.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Works Cited

Chaliand, Gérard, and Arnaud Blin, eds. The History of Terrorism from Antiquity to Al-Qaeda. Trans. Edward Schneider, Kathryn Pulver, and Jesse Browner. Berkeley: University of California Press, 2007. Print.

Ganor, Boaz. “Trends in Modern International Terrorism.” To Protect and To Serve: Policing in an Age of Terrorism. Eds. David Weisburd, Thomas Feucht, Idit Hakimi, Lois Mock, and Simon Perry. London: Springer, 2011. Web. <http://www.springer.com/cda/content/document/cda_downloaddocument/9780387736846-c1.pdf?SGWID=0-0-45-757706-p173749318&gt;

Gardela, Karen, and Bruce Hoffman. The RAND Chronology of International Terrorism for 1986. Santa Monica, CA: RAND Publications, 1990. Web. <http://www.rand.org/content/dam/rand/pubs/reports/2007/R3890.pdf&gt;

Hopkins, Julia. Terrorist Mentality: A Common Link throughout History? A Comparison of Narodnaya Volya, the French Reign of Terror, and the Muslim Brotherhood. Diss. University of Kansas, 2009. Print.

Laqueur, Walter. A History of Terrorism. Piscataway, NJ: Transaction Publishers, 2011. Print.

Miller, Martin A. The Foundations of Modern Terrorism: State, Society and the Dynamics of Political Violence. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2012. Print.

Rapoport, David. The Four Waves of Modern Terrorism. California: Department of Political Science, UCLA, 2006. Web. <http://www.international.ucla.edu/cms/files/Rapoport-Four-Waves-of-Modern-Terrorism.pdf&gt;

Shughart, William F. An analytical history of terrorism, 1945–2000. Oxford, MISS: Department of Economics, University of Mississippi. Web. <http://web.cenet.org.cn/upfile/80226.pdf&gt;