Transformational Leadership and Value Congruence

Feb 06

My latest research paper in Leadership focuses on the relationship between leadership and the alignment of values, both between leader and follower and relative to their organization. The research demonstrates that “The state of value congruence occasions a number of efficiencies, including similarity of cognitive processes and communication systems. The predictive character of behavior among people with value congruence further streamlines cooperation between leaders and followers and among peers. The levels of follower satisfaction and commitment both increase when values are aligned interpersonally and organizationally.” You can read the paper below: Download Transformational Leadership and Value...

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CardSwap Marketing Case Study

Jan 18

The first case study assigned for marketing focuses on the Canadian Company CardSwap. The case mentions pay-per-click advertising and some traditional offline media as possible customer acquisition methods. After a careful review of the company, its profit potential and the complexity of forecasting given the unpredictable nature of the the target market, I didn’t endorse either approach. One proposal I did make in my analysis was that CardSwap should offer their own open loop gift card, which I later found out that they do. From my paper: Continued investment in automation technologies for verifying the current balance of existing cards, social media integration and fine tuning of analytics technology are likely to bring the most long term benefit and growth to CardSwap. You can read or download the complete paper below. Download the CardSwap case study...

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My Position on Business Ethics

Dec 09

One uniquely human characteristic lies in our desire to hear and tell stories, fiction and non-fiction alike. By way of story we vicariously experience emotion and conflict through another person or object. The human quality of empathy binds us to the characters in story in such a way that we ask ourselves what we would do in similar circumstances. This introspection is what makes literature so powerful, and so meaningful. After all, it is in the moment of anguish or bliss, when nothing will be the same, when an irreversible choice is in front of us, that we discover who we really are. Context When the moment of decision comes, what will I do? Will I become sharp, focused and relentless, as Jonathan Harker did when striving to save his dear Mina? Will I surrender to my lusts as Claude Frollo did when entranced by the beauty of La Esmeralda? Will my resolve crumble in the face of fear and torment, as Winston Smith did when tortured or could I so completely change my constitution, as did Sydney Carton, and surrender my life to save the life of the man who would be my rival in love? Great literature provides an expansive collection of contexts in which to explore the depth of human choice. Some characters grow into strength while others shrink into oblivion. There is enormous value in these vicarious choices, made through the movements of well scripted characters, particularly when those choices result in resolutions. When the moment comes to make the same types of choices in our own lives, a comfortable library with ample time to review these literary works is unlikely. The choices were made long before that crucial moment, just as with the characters mentioned above. Gap in Reality (Pressure) In his book Story, Robert Mckee explains that story, like those mentioned above, happens whenever there is a gap between subjective and objective reality. The subjective reality is what the character anticipates will happen. Objective reality is what actually happens. For example, when I pursue a business arrangement, I anticipate that all parties will be honest and forthright. That is my subjective reality. When objective reality fails to align with my subjective reality there is a...

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The Disunited States of America

Oct 15

My assigned term paper topic in Managing in a Global Economy was The Disunited States of America. The question posed was whether or not it could happen. I explored this from economic and ideological perspectives, drawing on the American Revolution and the Civil War as historical precedents. In both cases, economic pressure was the primary driver in favor of secession. Ideological division exacerbated existing economic tension. My conclusion from the paper is that it’s unlikely to happen, at least sometime soon. Secession in the United States is possible, but very improbable. Arguments that the government has failed in its constitutional duties and secession is the most logical course fail to capture the most likely outcome: increased economic hardship and decreased opportunity in a shrinking global economy. The economic costs and risk of global fallout is so high that a rift is unlikely to occur until conditions domestically deteriorate to a point that a significant proportion of the population believes there is no possible way to reform the existing government. Historically two very strong precedents for secession include the American Revolution and the Civil War. In both cases, economic duress was the dominant driver leading up to the conflict that brought secession. Secondary ideological divisions, of liberty in the revolutionary conflict and slavery leading up to the Civil War, compounded economic pressure, but were not sufficient on their own to lead to secession. Here’s a prezi I created to present my term paper to my class, followed by the actual term paper. Download The Disunited States of America Here’s the handout I used along with the presentation. It’s a short quiz on economic aspects of the constitution. I’ll put the answers in as a comment after the presentation. Download the...

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The People’s Republic of China

Sep 24

Along with the general focus on geography and culture as they impact contemporary business, I had the opportunity to write an in depth paper on China and prepare a presentation for my class. China is a dynamic and complicated country. They have increasing political and economic leverage, while at the same time eroding their natural resources and polluting their environment. Growth is always complicated, and the pace they’ve maintained is even more challenging. See my findings below. The People’s Republic of China – Presentation The People’s Republic of China – Handout The People’s Republic of China Download The People’s Republic of China – Handout Download The People’s Republic of...

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The Dis-United States of America – Motivation

Sep 09

In a previous article grounds were established on which an individual or state might desire to secede from the union. In that article, the basis for secession is disagreement about the character of the Constitution or an ideological shift away from its relevance given contemporary circumstances. What that article didn’t explore in detail are the differences that are likely to be sufficient to motivate secession. In other words, what differences could be so acute that they would drive a group of people to the point that they would want to sever ties with their mother country? We find a clue to that division in the wording of the Declaration of Independence, which identifies certain “unalienable Rights”, among which are “Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness”. When men feel that their ability to provide for themselves and their kindred and to live according to their conscience is in jeopardy, they are much more likely to resort to extreme measures. We see this clearly in two major conflicts in American history. First is the Revolutionary War, which was a successful secession from British authority. The second, the American Civil War, was an unsuccessful attempt to secede from the Union. The drivers in both of these conflicts were economic and ideological. It may be the case that religious and ethnic tensions played a part in both conflicts mentioned, but a careful historical review provides much more evidence pointing to economics primarily, and ideology secondarily, as the major drivers behind each war. The American Revolution In his later years, John Adam’s sent a letter to Mr. Hezekiah Niles, which letter later took on the title “What is mean by American Revolution”. In this letter he asks the question “what do we mean by the American Revolution? Do we mean the American War? The Revolution was effected before the War commenced.” He goes on to argue that it is in the interest of humanity to understand how the revolution in the hearts and minds of the people was brought about: “By what means this great and important alteration in the religious, moral, political, and social character of the people of thirteen colonies, all distinct, unconnected, and independent of each other, was begun, pursued,...

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