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Enhancing the Student’s Learning Experience

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Enhancing the Student’s Learning Experience

Academic institutions tend to concentrate on the derivation of scores and grades. However, the organizations cannot be faulted for basing the students’ success on metrics and quantified dimensions. The downside is that the learners are exposed to unhappy experiences that affect their intellectual predisposition towards courses and the learning context holistically. Kate Zernike offers suggestions that the ordinary learner can implement to attain a wholesome academic experience. For online students, suggestions such as group work can be applied effectively by concentrating on the unique nature of the learner’s setting and the implications of collaboration on the student’s experience.

For the online learner, creating a happier academic experience necessitates tactics that combine conventional learning strategies and the uniqueness of the individual’s educational context. One of the suggestions is studying in groups. The basis for the proposition is that students are happier and intellectual when participating and engaging within the institution (Zernike). Group work allows learners to be actively involved with their peers, establish cordial relationships, and simultaneously resolve academic problems. Collaborating with like-minded students also generates further understanding and creativity through processes such as brainstorming.

However, conventional group work may be challenging due to distance and availability, especially for learners with courses that comprise Internet activities. In such situations, students may resort to contemporary strategies that facilitate interaction with other members. Adapting the suggestion may necessitate the incorporation of electronic communication applications that enable interaction regardless of the members’ physical presence. Features such as Skype can allow learners to work on problems without the limitations of physical presence. The institution can also provide learners with settings that allow them to work collectively.

The proposals that Zernike provides focus on building the learners’ interest in the academic programs offered irrespective of the institution’s nature. Students can gain intellectually and emotionally from being involved if the suggestions in question are implemented. Establishing a happier academic experience for an online student may involve group work. However, the nature of the learner’s setting may necessitate the application of non-traditional features that facilitate engagement such as digital interaction facets. Implementing the respective facilities may allow the learner to adapt the provided suggestions.

Work Cited

Zernike, Kate. “Books; The Harvard Guide to Happiness.” The New York Times, 8 Apr. 2001. https://www.nytimes.com/2001/04/08/education/books-the-harvard-guide-to-happiness.html. Accessed 25 Aug. 2018.

Reflective Essay

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Reflective Essay

From the readings, I have learned that the structures of race have been ever changing and subject to political and social situations. Additionally, native people all over the world face similar historical experiences of colonialism, which encompass the encroachment of land, the subordination of people, and the exploitation of labor and resources. Excellent illustrations were the cases involving the Aboriginal people of Australia and the Native Americans, who the settlers considered as populations to conquer for the prize of lands. People who were enslaved also possessed similar histories, which were characterized by violence, dehumanization, and socio-political separation from the dominant races. Such was the case with the enslaved West and Central Africans, who were taken from their homes and brought to the Americas for exploitation, facing brutality and dehumanization in the process. The subjugation of some races was made possible through the establishment of dominant groups of people through the control of those who were considered inferior.

When a group of people uses violence as a means of conquering another, the act leads to dehumanization of both the victims and perpetrators. From the analysis on colonialism by Cesaire, colonization essentially worked towards “decivilizing” and “brutalizing” the colonizer. The strategy is possible because, to enact violence among a group of people, one has to become violent in the process. Moreover, to maintain the sense of supremacy that is reputable, the colonizer needs to sustain their violence towards the subjugated group. Furthermore, taking resources belonging to those deemed less deserving stems from greed and a need for power to maintain societal and racial hierarchies. The idea was an essential objective of colonialism. However, as Cesaire notes, this phenomenon leads down a slippery path of normalizing, and sometimes accepting acts of violence as a necessity. Ironically, this dangerous course leads to the barbarism from which these people wished to distance themselves.  

The normalization of racial violence, colonization, and enslavement also began with simple ideas of superiority planted in the minds of the bourgeois as well as the working classes. Religious leaders, legislators, and other influential figures remain silent on these matters. When these notions become well-established facts, people become more tolerant of dehumanization and hegemony. Renan, who was a French philosopher, believed that people were not only divided between races, but that their ethnicity determined how they would contribute to the society. People of African descent had a reputation as tillers of the land. Chinese had “superior manual dexterity.” White people’s status was the masters and soldiers. These notions of racial identity further allowed the subjugation of other non-white races under the façade of helping to govern them.

The aspect of racial identity is also intertwined with that of ethnic origins. People of the same ethnic groups may be seen as those sharing a common ancestry, culture, and history. However, it is also true that people of the same race share the same experiences, thus making race and ethnicity an inter-related and intricate social structure. As such, there is a need to view race with respect to ethnicity and vice versa. The approach is because ethnic structures also influence societal hierarchies. Those deemed closer to the dominant groups, such as the Whites in America or Europe, have been historically placed closer to the top than those having more varied ethnic identities. As such, many communities will always racialize the ethnic myths of a particular group of people.

Tariffs and their Implications on the U. S. Economy

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Tariffs and their Implications on the U. S. Economy

In the article, “Tariffs Start to ripple their Way through the U. S. Economy,” Zumbrun argues that the recent tariffs implemented by the Trump administration may have adverse consequences on the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and wages. However, the proposed effects are hardly noticeable as exemplified by the impact of smaller tariffs on costs, especially for consumers. The application of widespread levies on products such as washing machines may pose significant repercussions in the long-term for consumers and increase pressure for local manufacturers. The article also notes that the expansion of the tariffs may lead to the erosion of the workforce. Taxes imposed on Chinese imports as well as steel and aluminum products expose the labor sector to the loss of nearly 145000 workers at the conclusion of 2019 (Zumbrun). Despite such limitations, the expansion of the labor market and the execution of tax-cuts secure the economy’s current position.

Tariffs may serve as a good strategy for amplifying the revenue for the country. In this strategy, the levies are a bad idea due to the effects that they will impose on the economy in the long-term. Increased tariffs on imports lead to price increments. The basis is that local producers are likely to enhance raw material prices to cater to the lack of access to cheaper imports. For example, the recent charges on steel and aluminum products have initiated the most significant cost increase over three months (Zumbrun). It is also essential to consider the effect of tariffs on the relationship between the U.S. and China as far as both markets are concerned. Since the levies decrease the profit that the exporting country attains via its imports, the latter will also impose higher tariffs for the same objective. In this respect, China may increase its rates for products supplied by the American market, hence raising the prices of the respective commodities locally and enhancing the rate of inflation.

Work Cited

Zumbrun, Josh. “Tariffs Start to Ripple their Way through the U. S. Economy.” The Wall Street Journal, 19 Jun. 2018. https://www.wsj.com/articles/tariffs-start-to-ripple-their-way-through-the-u-s-economy-1529400600. Accessed 25 Aug. 2018.

Quality of Life

Quality of Life

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Quality of Life

            Kidney donation offers an opportunity to save lives. In a lifetime, the occasion to save a life does not come by often. For this reason, the decision on whom to donate the kidney to should be a matter of immense consideration. Even without hindsight, anyone experiencing kidney failure deserves a transplant. However, it is not possible to grant all requests. As a result, a donation is granted to the most deserving patients. In most cases, the opportunity to decide on whom to donate an organ to is not accorded to the donor (Aijing, Wenzhao, Wei, Qiquan, & Xuantong, 2016). Organ transplant agencies grant it based on a first-come-first-serve system. Individuals who need organs are placed on a queue as they await donations. In the case study, I would give my kidney to Jill because, as the youngest participant and a single mother, the society expects her to have the greatest potential for contribution to both her community and her child.

            In evaluating the decision to donate, I considered Jill because she is the youngest in the group. Naturally, younger people are expected to outlive older individuals. Additionally, the possibility for recovery is higher in younger persons (Swazey, 2017). Their body metabolisms are much faster, and that would help in the healing process. I would not want to donate the organ to an individual who has a reduced likelihood of making a quick recovery.

            Jill is also a single mother. Thus, the fate of her child is tied to her. A child needs a mother’s love and guidance when growing up. In a family where the other spouse is available, the future of the child is favorable even without the mother. However, in Jill’s case, the child would be left without a parent if anything were to happen to her. I believe that the possibility of the child growing up as an orphan is the most distressing predicament.

            From the description, Jill is a former drug addict. As a result, kidney failure might have been occasioned by the drug abuse. The fact that she is described by the term ‘former’ suggests that she has turned her life around for the better. She is taking classes at the community college to improve her life. The description paints a picture of an individual who is focused on developing her life. The kidney donation would complete Jill’s turn around. She deserves another chance for putting an effort. She is trying to make amends for some of the mistakes she might have done in the past.

            I considered the future of each candidate before deciding to donate my kidney to Jill. I believe she has a higher possibility of improving her life and influencing the society. Jill’s story is one of resilience and hope for the future. Her recovery will inspire people to change their lives for the better. In particular, drug addicts would be motivated to amend their ways and aspire to be better individuals. In evaluating the decision to donate the organ to Jill, I did not scrutinize why other people are less deserving. I thought that Jill had the most compelling reasons for the donation in comparison to the others. An objective evaluation from another prospective donor would most likely lead to a different outcome. All the candidates deserve a chance for an organ transplant. Each life is exceptional, and all possibilities should be evaluated to salvage the lives of individuals with organ failure.

References

Aijing, L., Wenzhao, X., Wei, W., Qiquan, W., & Xuantong, D. (2016). Public opinion on organ donation after death and its influence on attitudes toward organ donation. Annals of Transplantation21, 516-524.

Swazey, J. P. (2017). The courage to fail: A social view of organ transplants and dialysis. New York, NY: Routledge.

Application

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Application

The outcome of the Triangle Waist Factory fire could have been different if unionization was present within the workplace environment. At the time, the Triangle Factory facilitated deplorable settings that often exposed the workers to harsh and unhealthy conditions. Aspects such as excessive working hours, low wages, and unsanitary as well as unsafe environments constituted a normal part of the organization (DeCenzo, Robbins, and Verhulst 289). However, an essential issue is that the factory did not support the harmonization of workers. Before the occurrence of the tragedy in 1911, the Triangle Factory as well as other organizations within the respective market often engaged in dehumanizing practices that failed to observe the employee’s rights and privileges.

Gender discrimination also contributed further to the lack of organization among the factories’ employees. Interestingly, the workers that comprised the factory were mostly youthful immigrant women who were threatened by the new surroundings that they inhabited (DeCenzo, Robbins, and Verhulst 289). Moreover, the factory’s standard practice of shutting the doors to prevent employee theft contributed to the hazardous nature of its environment. With unionization, the employees would have initiated changes that modified the workplace environment into a positive surrounding. As such, employees would have resolved the issues that contributed to the fire, especially the theft prevention measure, and enhanced the factory’s going concern in the long-term.

In respect to the possibility of averting the fire, the business could have applied specific models of change, conflict, and communication. Firstly, models that deal with change tend to focus on interventions that organizations can use to apply with the least resistance from employees and other inherent stakeholders. Companies can also use such strategies in the management of change, particularly after implementation, in order to enhance the benefits of the modification. As such, a model based on notions centered on Critical Systems Heuristics (CSH) is applicable to facilitate change (Raza and Standing 195). The framework advocates for the establishment of a social context that involves persons that are involved and affected. Concerning the case, the model may have managed to produce a positive outcome by allowing all stakeholders, especially the employers and the workers to meet and address the issues.

Regarding conflict, the emphasis is on the negotiation model. Unionization is a process based on a collective bargaining agreement, whereby the parties involved concur on satisfactory conditions that fulfill their grievances (DeCenzo, Robbins, and Verhulst 167). Using negotiation, affected workers, and employers could convene and address recurrent workplace problems, hence creating an agreement that facilitates both parties’ goals. Lastly, a model that encourages the participation of employees in the factory’s decision-making process could facilitate communication. Rather than relying on a top-down archetype, a plausible system would be a horizontal design that facilitates interaction across all levels.

It is possible to consider the application of these models for the sake of averting predicaments similar to the Triangle Factory Fire. The bureaucratic framework that the factory applied at the time largely encouraged the establishment of unfavorable conditions for workers. Furthermore, the privileges that employees presently experience in the workplace were absent. Businesses can consider these models because they address pertinent areas that could have led to the prevention of the tragedy. Firstly, the CSH model, which focuses on change, may support the aspect by encouraging inclusivity. Workers and their employers are all involved in the respective model, further allowing the implementation of change management strategies that satisfy both parties. Additionally, frameworks that focus on conflict and communication via negotiation and a horizontal design respectively can support the creation of opportunities for unionization by allowing collective bargaining agreements as well as ensure the participation of all levels of the organization. As such, considering the models in question may be important in addressing the components that usually encourage unfortunate outcomes such as the Triangle Fire.  

Works Cited

DeCenzo, David A., Stephen P. Robbins, and Susan L. Verhulst. Fundamentals of Human Resource Management. John Wiley & Sons, 2016.

Raza, Syed Arshad, and Craig Standing. “A Systemic Model for Managing and Evaluating Conflicts in Organizational Change.” Systemic Practice and Action Research, vol. 24, no. 3, 2011, pp. 187-210.

The Emergence of Witches’ Stereotypes

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The Emergence of Witches’ Stereotypes

  1. Introduction
  2. The mentioning of the word witch draws up a bleak image that includes an old, worn-down, ugly, and, most frequently, female individual.
  3. It is imperative to find out where these negative perceptions of witches originated from as this will inform future attitudes of the public. General misperceptions of witchcraft and the perpetrators are typically shaped by a poor understanding of these phenomena that significantly alter the reality of their emergence.
  4. At the heart of these common misconceptions is the assumption that the largest number of people who practiced witchcraft were aged, poor women. Another popular mistake was that witches were inherently wicked and iniquitous.
  5. It is already clear that most of the features that are used to describe a typical witch cannot be found in any ordinary human being (Bailey 400). Far from it, the concept of the witch is an imaginary one that has been reinforced over the years. However, this did not stop people from believing in them and their associated powers.
  6. Between the 15th and 17th century, the more significant part of Europe was rife with numerous hunts and executions targeting witches. Approximately 45,000 people were punished for this crime, women being the most substantial number.
  7. Negative Image of Witches
  8. The accusations leveled against witches were fundamental in painting a picture of an evil group of people within the community (Guiley 161).
  9. Witches naturally had a close relationship with the Devil who empowered them with magical power that facilitated their evil deeds. These misconceptions not only stopped at associating with Satan but went as far as proposing that witches had sexual relations with demons in night-time trysts.
  10. It is imperative to note the introduction of a religious perspective that was fuelled mainly by the rise of the Roman Catholic Church. Witches have also been accused of causing impotence among men by stealing their organs.
  11. The role played by society in reinforcing witchcraft stereotypes
  12. The problem with the society at that particular period was their lack of understanding concerning scientific and natural phenomena. For this reason, rather than seeking an explanation, most people opted to find an appropriate scapegoat that could carry the accusations and blame.
  13. While some societies perceived a witch as possessing supernatural powers, in other organizations, their abilities were reduced (Guiley 158). Instead, they represented an average person but having the free will to learn and use magic. In reality, witches did not exist.
  14. The people hunted over the years were ordinary people boxed into a category because of their unusual approach towards life. The very act of using alternative medicine in itself was considered an act of witchcraft.
  15. Most doctors and healers that could use advanced science to cure people were immediately labeled as witches and persecuted. Regardless of the origin of their power and the method of execution, witches were blamed for causing all manner of disease and problems in the community (Bailey 397).
  16. Logic behind witchcraft
  17. Witchcraft emerges as the best possible explanation when logic fails. It is easy to blame inexplicable diseases and other mysteries on witchcraft, a phenomenon that in itself is mystical. Witchcraft has also been used to explain the rapid and overwhelming success of people across different fields.
  18.  Since witchcraft is not clearly defined, the witch is then classified as a selfish person who desires more than they deserve. In the same vein, they are seen as having excessive and illegitimate ambitions.
  19. Placing witches in such a category would automatically expose them as a common enemy of the community. By painting them as vicious, evil, and villainous individuals, it would be easy to justify their persecution.
  20. The role played by pop culture and media
  21. Pop culture also contributed towards introducing and reinforcing the negative stereotypes surrounding witches. Television and film have contributed towards vilification of people whose occupation typically bordered on witchcraft.
  22. Movies showing witches as planning and orchestrating evil deeds worsened the case for people having a different approach towards life, medicine, and science (Guiley 160).
  23. Special holidays such as Halloween also contributed towards painting witches as evildoers even though many other characters also engaged in the malevolent behavior.
  24. The problem with the attitude against witches is that they were considered enemies of the state, enemies of development as well the source of other setbacks. The phenomenon of witchcraft in the early civilizations was cause for real concern (Bailey 390).
  25. It was an indicator that the society was yet to develop to a level that it could embrace advancements in science and medicine.
  26. Conclusion
  27. Apart from the resistance to science and development, witchcraft was also an indicator that popular culture is an active agent of change. Art, media, theatre, and other conventional methods of enlightening the society had already embraced the fact that witches were real and that they were to blame for the problems being experienced.
  28. Painters depicted witches engaging in heinous acts while plays and musicals reenacted these scenes with a gory accuracy that left little to the imagination. The outcome was a society that was convinced that witches were evil and that it was necessary to eliminate them.
  29. The combination of these different factors contributed to the perpetuated persecution and negative perception of witches across most civilizations.

Works Cited

Bailey, Michael D. “The Disenchantment of Magic: Spells, Charms, and Superstition in Early European Witchcraft Literature.” The American Historical Review, vol. 111, no. 2, 2006, pp. 383-404.

Guiley, Rosemary. The Encyclopedia of Demons and Demonology. Infobase Publishing, 2009.

Business and Corporate-Level Strategies

Business and Corporate-Level Strategies

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Business and Corporate-Level Strategies

Starbucks Corporation is an international company that specializes in vending different types of beverages and fast foods. It has been in operation since 1971. Starbucks holds a significant proportion of the global market share when it comes to coffee houses. The company is renowned for producing a wide range of hot and cold beverages, pastries, and other packed foodstuff. Starbucks’ products are also available in grocery stores. Over the last four decades, the company has managed to amass a substantial following due to its strong online presence. Apart from this, each Starbucks establishment has managed to ensure that all its customers receive stellar service.

Business-Level Strategy

Starbucks relies heavily on differentiation approach as its main business-level strategy. The company plans for its customers to receive other services aside from the initial offerings. The firm intends to foster a unique experience that emanates from its first-class coffee as well as the establishment’s ambiance and quality services. The organization has carefully positioned its physical stores in strategic locations to encourage a close connection with the neighborhood and nurture a long-term business setting (Behar, Goldstein, & Schultz, 2014). Its brick-and-mortar stores are located across all the continents, and the numbers have increased in the last decade. The company’s leadership has also planned to further its operations beyond differentiation. The business strategy has its basis on the need to cope with a rapidly evolving middle-class economy. Starbucks’ specific policy is to gain an elevated status in the market, concentrating on the vast history that shaped the company culture including proper working conditions and interpersonal workforce relations (Schultz & Gordon, 2012). In the future, Starbucks will open a chain of high-end luxury reserve stores where clients can experience a diverse array of hot and cold drinks. The organization has also begun experimenting with other unconventional beverages including wine (Behar et al., 2014). Starbucks directs all these efforts towards implementing the differentiation strategy and ensuring that Starbucks maintains a competitive edge.

From the analysis, it is evident that adopting a differentiation strategy is useful for the coffeehouse giant. The company has openly embraced a culture of creativity when it comes to developing new brands of coffee that meet the expectations of different locations and regions. Therefore, differentiation suits Starbucks. For instance, within New York, its express stores’ idea was useful since it cut most costs by using mobile shops around colleges and offices. The inclination towards convenience by the higher percentage of their target market and the concept of the mobile truck deliver the ultimate Starbucks experience. The intention of this business strategy in the long term is to take the existing encounter to newer levels.

Experimentation during these few years will establish business models that will appeal to the most hesitant customer. Regarding success levels, the business-level strategy of differentiation to create a unique experience will ensure that Starbucks will survive and thrive (Behar et al., 2014). Starbucks, as a major supplier of coffee, has to develop product differentiation to stay ahead of its competitors. The tactic has necessitated a rise in the prices of most of its commodities, but increased customer traffic has countered the difference.

Another significant business-level strategy at Starbucks is customer loyalty. They have invested in brand loyalty, which can prove useful in fending off future rivals. Consequently, the franchise has developed various programs that engage the customer and, in the process, transforms them into loyal clientele (Schultz & Gordon, 2012). For example, Starbucks has offered free internet services for frequent clients. Member customers also enjoy a host of benefits specifically designed to foster loyalty. Apart from this, Starbucks also offers other programs that provide free coffee to people joining the members’ club. These methods are useful in ensuring that the company develops loyalty among its consumers. This strategy is beneficial in guaranteeing the retention of existing customers and the realization of new ones. However, the downside is that the approach demands additional promotion and marketing funds, for which the annual budget does not account. It is possible that even in the presence of numerous loyalty programs, increased customer volumes do not necessarily translate into profit margins (Behar et al., 2014). While Starbucks can rely on their differentiation strategy conclusively, they run the risks of dealing with imitation and altering the target segments that affect the organization’s direction.

Corporate-Level Strategies

Starbucks has also adopted several strategies that ensure its success at the corporate level. Since its establishment, the company has deliberately worked on maintaining an excellent reputation and rank within the international scene. Starbucks has set aside the global responsibility department that deals exclusively with social responsibility. In this manner, the corporation becomes actively involved in analyzing the environment and aligning the company with the latest requirements as far as performance is concerned (Schultz & Gordon, 2012). Starbucks has remained genuinely concerned about the ecological status, stakeholders, labor force, and the surrounding community. It hinges its social responsibility on three significant areas: the environment, ethical sourcing, and the community.

Concerning the environment, Starbucks complies with strategies aimed at conserving and replenishing the natural environment. It is easy to perceive Earth as the largest and most significant factor of production. This approach has facilitated the creation of LEED-certified stores that signify their compliance with preserving natural resources and reducing the effect on climatic change. Their strategy is also evident in the methods they use to recycle waste, save energy using technology, and many other initiatives that ensure conservation and stability within the environment (Schultz & Gordon, 2012). The Cup Summit is an excellent example of an action by Starbucks that met several objectives including reducing the carbon footprint, lowering plastic pollution levels, and uniting the community for a mutual cause. The different CSR efforts that Starbucks spearheads may be risky since they are capital and labor intensive – a flaw that is pointless especially since social affairs are outside the objectives. Nonetheless, engaging in CSR activities will have the benefit of more prominent brand recognition. Starbucks can appear on an international platform as a sponsor or an endorser of different events. Having a strong brand recognition will also translate into increased sales and stronger customer loyalty. Customers gain an attachment to the Starbucks brand because of its identification.

Competitive Environment

Starbucks faces significant competition from other established companies including McDonald’s, Tim Hortons, and Dunkin Donuts, all of which have numerous stores within major states. Regardless of the intense rivalry posed by these companies, Starbucks has still managed to maintain its position as the global leader in the provision of coffee products. McDonald’s has managed to sustain its share by improving its customer service. In all its establishments, the employees surpass their regular tasks and mix up the ingredients for the customer (Hitt, Ireland, & Hoskisson, 2013; Behar et al., 2014). This additional service is a deliberate effort to reach the same standards offered by the employees at Starbucks. On their part, Dunkin Donuts has attempted to redefine the meaning of coffee to the drinker as a vital element in their life. Their advertising strategy has its foundation on ensuring that all potential consumers perceive the beverage as a necessity (Thompson, Strickland, & Gamble, 2018). Dunkin Donuts has also expanded their product range to include other beverages such as chai tea and more coffee varieties. When comparing the different competitive strategies of the three major coffee vendors within the United States, it is clear that Starbucks is still the industry leader. They will maintain this position because of the rapid rate of innovation as well as the provision of first-class services.

Market Cycles

Market cycles tend to differentiate the frameworks that organizations apply in response to intense rivalry within their respective settings. Slow cycle time refers to a stable period in which companies can implement competitive strategies. During this period, firms can develop and incorporate strategies without fear of adverse consequences, particularly duplication. Conversely, in fast cycle markets, there is a high rate of imitation in the competitive approach (Thompson et al., 2018). Within a slow-cycle market, Starbucks would have little problem surviving since it can depend on its long-term competitive tactics including offering personalized services and a wide variety of coffee beverages. However, in a fast-cycle market, Starbucks would have a difficult time since most of its competitors can easily replicate the same approaches. McDonald’s and Dunkin Donuts are already replicating the Starbucks’ strategy of offering personalized service hence placing all rivals at the same level. In such an environment, Starbucks would struggle to maintain its position in the global coffee market.

References

Top of Form

Top of Form

Behar, H., Goldstein, J., & Schultz, H. (2014). It’s not about the coffee: Lessons on putting people first from a life at Starbucks. New York, NY: Portfolio.

Hitt, M. A., Ireland, R. D., & Hoskisson, R. E. (2013). Strategic management: Concepts and cases: Competitiveness and globalization (10th ed.). Mason, OH: South-Western Cengage Learning.

Schultz, H., & Gordon, J. (2012). Onward: How Starbucks fought for its life without losing its soul. Emmaus, PA: Rodale.

Thompson, A. A., Strickland, A. J., & Gamble, J. E. (2018). Crafting and executing strategy: The quest for competitive advantage: Concepts and cases. New York, NY: McGraw-Hill Education.

How Does Reliance on Social Media for News and Information Affect News Consumers’ Perspectives?

How Does Reliance on Social Media for News and Information Affect News Consumers’ Perspectives?

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How Does Reliance on Social Media for News and Information Affect News Consumers’ Perspectives?

            Social media is a term used to describe a collection of online communication channels that are designed to offer users a dedicated community-based input, content sharing, interaction, and collaboration of news and information. These media include websites and mobile applications, which offer access to blogs, forums, social networking, social curation, social bookmarking, and wikis (Pentina & Tarafdar, 2014). Pinterest, Facebook, Reddit, Wikipedia, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Google+ are some of the popular social media platforms (Johnson & Kaye, 2014). The research will focus on the use and application of social media, and how it has become an integral component of the daily lives of people – an aspect that has led to the development of several social, economic, and political practices. The study will investigate how much reliant are people on social media for their news and information and the impact of this reliance on their perception of the world. The findings may change the way various social, economic, and political issues will be addressed in the future.

            The study will be premised on the observation that the use of social media for the consumption of news and information does influence the perception of the consumers as it offers an alternative from the traditional outlets of news and information. It is important to note that conventional forms of media, for instance, television, newspapers, and radio, have been criticized for being overtly subjective in reporting and sharing data with the public (Turcotte, York, Irving, Scholl, & Pingree, 2015). Although the traditional media has ventured into the social media realm, it will not influence the veracity of the data and news shared on these platforms.

Issues such as unemployment, pollution, social justice, and good governance will become more accentuated topics of public discourse in the present era of social media than to the past era when people depended on traditional media houses for news. The increasing dependence on social media for information represents a paradigm shift and its impact on the way the society perceives the social, economic, and political issues (Johnson & Kaye, 2014). For example, the Black-Lives-Matter civil rights movement in the US began as a local advocacy social media campaign against police brutality on the African Americans but eventually became a global online advocacy movement on issues surrounding social justice.

The reliance on social media for news and information is supported by the following facts:

  • A narrowing gap between online and television news consumption.
  • Mobile devices encourage users to check the news online.
  • Older adults will be at the forefront of driving growth in the use of mobile news.
  • Two-thirds of Americans (67%) report of getting a portion of their news and information from online sources (Zhang, Johnson, Seltzer, & Bichard, 2010).
  • A majority of the persons of color and less educated populations in the US are reported of consuming news from digital sources.

To understand this phenomenon further, the research might need to establish:

  1. The impact of fabricated or “fake news” on the consumption of online news and information.
  2. The effect of social media applications and their usage on the perception of their users.
  3. Is traditional media trusted more than the social media for news and information?  
  4. Do social media serve only to entertain, while most people go to traditional media websites for “authentic” news?
  5. How social media drive public opinion?

References

Johnson, T. J., & Kaye, B. K. (2014). Credibility of social network sites for political information among politically interested Internet users. Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication19(4), 957-974.

Pentina, I., & Tarafdar, M. (2014). From “information” to “knowing”: Exploring the role of social media in contemporary news consumption. Computers in Human Behavior35, 211-223.

Turcotte, J., York, C., Irving, J., Scholl, R. M., & Pingree, R. J. (2015). News recommendations from social media opinion leaders: Effects on media trust and information seeking. Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication20(5), 520-535.

Zhang, W., Johnson, T. J., Seltzer, T., & Bichard, S. L. (2010). The revolution will be networked: The influence of social networking sites on political attitudes and behavior. Social Science Computer Review28(1), 75-92.

Intercultural Management Unit 4

Intercultural Management Unit 4

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Intercultural Management Unit 4

  1. Describe the five stages of the negotiation process. explain how the negotiation can be unsuccessful if you leave out one of the steps

The course of mediation involves different stages. The first phase is preparing and planning by both parties, which enable them to know more about their position and that of the other party. The stage involves much research aimed at identifying facts and understanding each other’s interests and the risks involved. The phase is vital in providing information, and a person should familiarize himself with different aspects such as culture, language, and practices of the other party. The research will be critical in avoiding misinterpretation and misunderstanding, which might result from different cultural backgrounds. The negotiations will not be successful if the parties fail to plan and prepare as it means they will not have sufficient information. The parties will not know what to negotiate for or how to conduct the bargaining process if the preparation and planning fail. The stage enables the managers to identify their negotiation styles as well as the strategy of the other party. The approach is an essential strength in the negotiation process, primarily if one of the parties can determine the weaknesses of the other.

The second stage involves relationship building, which includes getting to know the parties involved in the process, is vital in the cultivation of trust. The development of reliance will be necessary before any negotiations and transactions begin. A failure to build trust will hinder the negotiation process, as the parties will doubt each other’s intentions (Deresky, 2014). The third stage involves the exchange of information that focuses on different tasks. Each of the parties will make the other aware of its position. The parties will then have the chance to ask questions and receive responses. After determining the situation, it will be possible to establish the necessity of other alternatives to the proposed solutions. This step is critical, and its failure will limit the information available. Such a failure will end up restricting the settlements in the negotiation process.

The fourth stage is persuasion, whereby the parties try to influence each other. There is much bargaining as one party tries to convince the other to accept its position. The parties have to be aware of the different negotiation strategies to use so that they can be convincing. If one of the parties fails to do this, then it will be at a disadvantage, and the other party will end up gaining more. The final stage is concession and agreement. The parties realize that they each have to make concessions as they try to come to a position where both of them can agree (Deresky, 2014). If one of the parties fails to have a good strategy, it will not be able to negotiate well, and it might end up losing. The process comes after the parties have already tried to persuade each other. This stage is crucial as it ensures finality to the process. If the step fails, then the negotiations will have failed as well. This situation would occur even if the initial phases were successful. Therefore, it can be possible for the parties to conduct research, develop relationships with each other, exchange information and come up with alternatives, and persuade each other but still fail to agree in the end. Therefore, every step is vital to the negotiation process.

  • In the decision-making process, you must take into account several cultural variables. Describe one of the variables associated with risk tolerance and one of the variables associated with internal/external locus of control. Why are these important factors to consider?

In cultures where uncertainty avoidance is high, risk tolerance tends to be low. This setting is also present in harmonious and egalitarian cultures. Therefore, risk tolerance will tend to be high in countries where uncertainty avoidance is low. The level of trust in a country determines risk tolerance as well. Risk tolerance tends to be high when the level of confidence is elevated. People will have a propensity to take more risk when they have protection against that risk. Cultures that are more individualistic will be less risk-tolerant compared to group cultures. If people in a specific culture have a high need to avoid uncertainties in their dealings and negotiations, then they will have less tolerance for risk. Additionally, individual aspirations matter in determining risk tolerance. People who are more ambitious and who aspire to do more tend to take more risks. It is also essential to understand the variation between cultures in the understanding of risks since what is one culture considers as risk might be the norm in another culture.

The locus of control is a person’s belief over the authority that he or she has concerning different events and experiences. This locus of control tends to vary between different cultures. People within many western cultures, characterized by high levels of individualism tend to lean more toward an internal locus of control (Deresky, 2014). They tend to believe that they have greater control over their situation. Many eastern cultures, which are group oriented or collective, tend to have more characteristics of external locus of control. Understanding the locus of control is essential in negotiations as it might help a person to determine what direction one of the parties will take during the negotiation process. The strategy may cause some people to compromise when faced with a situation. It helps in understanding the negotiation style. External locus of control involves the conformity to authority and lower emotional stability. A negotiating party that leans towards the external locus of control is more likely to concede in the negotiation process.

People with an external locus of control tend to demonstrate more need for external motivation before taking action and making decisions. However, this is not the case with an internal locus of control. Such people tend to be intrinsically motivated. Before making a decision, a person with an external locus of control will seek to consult and request the opinion of others, especially those who are above them before making their decision. The approach will affect the negotiation process since it might take longer. On the other hand, someone who has an internal locus of control will have more self-confidence, and this will make the decision-making process faster. Cultures that are more individualistic tend to demonstrate internal locus of control, and there is greater personal responsibility in the decisions made. Additionally, people with an external locus of control are more afraid to take risks. The hesitation will affect the decision-making process as well.

The locus of control is the power that controls peoples decisions concerning the actions that they choose to do on their own as well as the things that other people do for them. It is people’s perceptions concerning their belief on who is responsible for the events and experiences that happen in their lives and for their actions and behaviors. The conviction in self-control, which involves believing that an individual has more control, as well as the faith in external control determines whether a person has an internal or external locus of control

  • You are a businessperson noted for your ability to complete negotiations in the U.S. within 24 hours. You are in Mexico to negotiate a lucrative joint venture. Discuss the decisions you will have to make and the strategies you will have to use in order to ensure a positive outcome.

It is essential to understand that even though America and Mexico are on the same continent, they vary widely in their cultures and business practices. They conduct businesses differently, and they will have a different approach to negotiations as well. American negotiators tend to respect their opponents, and they are often willing to operate in good faith. They state their positions clearly in the beginning, but they do not concede readily. Their stand is firm from the beginning of the process, and although they are willing to compromise, they will only do so when the negotiations are at an impasse. Additionally, they tend to compel the other party to reveal their position, but they can conceal their own opinions. The strategy is a significant strength in the negotiation process as it enables them to get the best deal (Deresky, 2014). They are factual, and they tend to do a lot of research, which allows them to get the information they need. They also tend to have full briefings on all issues they need to cover in the negotiation process.

Understanding other cultures and knowing how they negotiate is imperative. Cultural differences can hinder the negotiation process. Mexicans tend to be group-oriented, and there is usually less assertion to individual preference. Therefore, there will be more preference towards conforming to group norms and maintaining harmony among the members. Mexicans value building of relationships and strong bonds, which they consider essential to forming close deals. Additionally, people tend to prefer doing business with those they know. Therefore, there will be more focus on the second stage of the negotiation process, which centers on the building of trust. Demonstration of goodwill is crucial as it ensures greater trust and cooperation. It would be short-sighted to assume that the negotiation process will be in the short-run. One will have to be committed to ascertaining that they invest in the long term, and the process will require much time. Therefore, even if an American mediator will state his position from the start of the negotiation process, this will not make the process easier or faster. Maintaining respect of others and their traditions is imperative. Mexicans are proud of their culture, and a person who demonstrates this respect will have an additional strength in the negotiation process.

Though people know me well for completing negotiations within 24 hours within America, I have to be aware of the different cultural approaches in Mexico. I have to understand that I have to build trust with the people I meet and this might take time. Therefore, in addition to conducting much research about the company, I have to be willing to commit more time and other resources towards building relationships. I also have to ensure that I know people on a personal level. Mexicans conduct business on a personal level, and many of the companies tend to be family owned. The negotiation process might include getting to know the negotiating parties on a personal level. Mexicans tend to distrust those whose intentions are not clear. This scenario will not occur since American negotiators tend to make their decisions known from the beginning. Although Americans tend to have full briefings on negotiation issues, they have to be aware of the possibility of a change of situations and events when negotiating with Mexicans.

  • List four nonverbal characteristics of culture that you must understand when engaging in negotiations overseas. Explain how an understanding of each characteristic will help you negotiate successfully.

Eye contact is often preferred, especially when conducting business in western cultures. During the negotiation process, it is a sign of assertiveness and confidence. However, this might not be the case in some of the eastern cultures, and other cultures around the world. In some cultures, people perceive eye contact as intimidating. This knowledge will be valuable when conducting businesses and when negotiating overseas. It will be essential to know when to have eye contact and when to avoid it based on the cultures of the other negotiating parties. Using the approach when dealing with people from western culture will communicate honesty, but the same tactic might convey a different message when dealing with business people from overseas. In some of the societies avoiding eye contact is a sign of respect. In other cultures, the length of time of eye contact matters and a more extended stare might be considered intimidating.

The use of gestures varies widely across cultures. The same gestures can communicate different messages to different cultures. Understanding the meaning of different gestures is imperative, as it will ensure that one does not offend people from other cultures. In the United States, people know and accept the okay sign to mean that something is acceptable, but the same sign may have a negative meaning in other cultures. The zero sign might be an offense in some of the cultures in Eastern Europe. It is essential to understand that gestures using hand communication can hinder the negotiation process. Therefore, it might be more advisable to avoid them altogether when negotiating overseas. People also conduct and interpret touching and the manner of greeting differently. In some cultures, firm handshakes are a welcome gesture as they demonstrate confidence and they are widely accepted. In other communities such as those in Europe and the Middle East, it is common to kiss each other on the cheeks. Such level of closeness might not be welcome in cultures that need their personal space.

The physical space between people when communicating and interacting communicates different messages to different people. Some people prefer closeness while others are uncomfortable with confined areas. People in countries that place much emphasis on individualism will be nervous when a person comes too close to them. In some cultures, even an accidental touch might have a negative connotation, and it may elicit strong reactions. People engaging in one-on-one conversations need less personal space especially in Latin American countries and countries in the Middle East.

Body postures are critical as well. Not only do they communicate different messages between cultures but they can also enable individuals to know more about each other. For instance, while sitting, some of the body postures such as slouching can betray a lack of confidence. Looking away from people can imply that someone is shy or nervous. The timidity can affect the negotiation process. The other party can take advantage of the situation based on the other person’s body posture. The body movement might derail the negotiation process if the other party misinterprets it. Different aspects of a person’s stance might communicate something offensive in some cultures. The first impressions that people make are important. Therefore, it is essential to be knowledgeable of how one’s posture and body movement can be interpreted by others in different countries.

Reference

Deresky, H. (2014). International management: Managing across borders and cultures (8th ed.). Boston, MA: Pearson

Henri Matisse

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Henri Matisse

The fame encompassing Henri Matisse has its basis on the inventiveness that he applied in his paintings, particularly his use of color. Matisse is considerably the 20th century’s best colorist. From a personal perspective, Matisse’s predisposition towards color had their influence being the pursuit of decoration. Despite being born at a time when Impressionism was still rife in the art scene, the artist used the preferred medium as a way of expressing beauty in expressive and monumental paintings as evidenced in most Fauve illustrations. In fact, Matisse posited that his creation of art had its foundation on the need to create a consoling and soothing effect on the viewer’s mind. The decorative aspect of his work influenced critics to perceive him as an artist dedicated towards the depiction of satisfaction and pleasure. Consequently, Matisse’s incorporation of color attempted to achieve the development of atmosphere in his compositions. He often utilized contrasting regions of unadulterated colors rather than conventional dimensions such as structure and volume. The application of unmodulated colors, as well as the white part of bare canvasses, allowed the painter to establish a glaring setting for his paintings, especially in forms such as nude and still life compositions. Matisse’s passions for art were not solely inclined to paintings. His work also covered sculptures and architectural creations. In fact, the Chapel of Rosary in Vence is an excellent example of the expertise he possessed in the latter field. The artist’s design of the building was testament to the admiration that he felt for his caregiver, Monique Bourgeois. In the 1940s, Matisse became ill due to cancer and experienced surgery, which further compromised his life and capacity to work. As such, he had to take time off to recuperate for nearly a year in France, specifically in Nice. During his recovery, he encountered a woman (Bourgeois) who aside from expressing interest in his compositions, offered quality care to him. Consequently, Bourgeois’ attendance and interest in the artist’s work mainly influenced the design and creation of the Chapel. To develop the building, Matisse designed every aspect of it, from the decoration to its exterior. An interesting aspect of his blueprint involved his viewpoints regarding aspects such as space and light. Matisse’s use of pure white color in the chapel’s internal space had its foundation on the idea that the respective dimensions represented man’s mystical disposition and spiritual facet. Other designs such as the use of stained glass and the iconic representation of the Virgin, St. Dominic, and the Way of the Cross demonstrated the connection between the inherent religious setting and the external world. Another interesting aspect regarding Henri Matisse was the artist’s employment of color in the Rosary Chapel. Unlike his paintings, people regarded buildings such as churches as religious creations. As such, a person needed to follow certain conventions if he or she embarked on designing and establishing a place of worship. Matisse was not a person that adhered to social traditions. In fact, his use of color was a point of contention at one point due to the way he applied it in contrast to other artists. In this respect, one would have expected that the Chapel would at least abide by traditional rules. However, Matisse used his expertise and view of art to create a design that appealed to people based on color alone. A good illustration of this approach is the incorporation of colored motifs in the building’s interior area. The integration of a formless white surface juxtaposed against numerous stained glass windows generates a range of various colors that are easily perceptible by an outsider. Furthermore, the correlation between these aspects establishes colorful reflections on the Chapel’s white space. Such examples position Matisse as a painter that strived to apply color as an essential medium in both art and architecture.