Conflict Resolution Questionnaire

Friends, I am doing my Behavior in Organizations project in Conflict resolution and for that I would be requiring your inputs. So please spare a couple of minutes to fill in this survey

This survey measures one’s conflict resolution techniques on 10 dimensions:
1. View of the conflict
2. Atmosphere
3. Clarification of perception
4. Needs
5. Power
6. Future
7. Options
8. Doable
9. Mutual Benefit agreement
10. Extra considerations

Thank you for taking your time to fill in this survey for me.


Size Matters

During MBA, I have learned is that
1. Economies of scale: The bigger you get the cheaper it is to manufacture, you can get better price from your supplier, your distribution and advertizement costs (per unit output) will go down.
2. Innovation: Bigger firms can afford to spend larger amounts in R&D, patents, market research etc. which gives them an edge over smaller firms.
3. Professional management. In Larger firms have more competent mangers, which are there by virtue of their abilities and not their pedigree. Hence they are more rational and better.
4. Large firms can diversify their risks. Hence they have a higher probability of surviving a recession.
5. Their brands and products are well recognized and its hard for a small firm to match their marketing skills.
6. Greater pricing power, ability to modify the policies.
7. They usually have multiple functional strengths and core competency. (Smaller firms have 1 core competency and idea)

If all this are true, then why is that larger firms have not driven out all the smaller firms out of business? What decides that a particular firm has the required critical mass to gallop in the future as a force to be reckoned with, or it’s too small and would perish the corporate wars.

However what I have realized over the years is that giants are dinosaurs who are too clumsy to realize the changing landscape. In fact in the bid to retain at the helm, they would go to any lengths to manipulate the market, stall the growth and progress. Startups are more nimble, creative and arise from the unmet needs of the consumers.


Non Verbal Communication

Here is one of the various class activity that we did in our class. in just 2 minutes, this activity will tell you how you both perform as a team.
Sit with your partner and have one pen and a sheet of paper in front of you.
Then both of you hold the pen TOGETHER, and try to draw a picture.. Maybe a picture of a house with hills, roads, stream etc.
The important point is that both the partners need to hold the pen together throughout the exercise and both of them cannot talk to each other, or communicate with facial communications.

Its looks simple, but the beauty is that in just 2 minutes you will realize who is dominating whom, who wants to draw and who is just there holding the the pen. Are the people drawing by taking turns or fighting. How the other partner reacts when you modify the object/part of the drawing which the other person was making.
Just try it, you will be amazed by the results.


Number Crunching

Today I realized the true difference between data and information….
we took a 1GB worth of data files (just reports and texts, no pictures or multimedia) and then over the next 5 hours 4 of us crunched those numbers into a text report of 200KB and then after an hour later crunched that report One Single Word: Buy/Sell.


Holy $#%&! Researchers Say It’s Good to Swear at Work!

Karthi recently forwarded me this newslink

and here I was a fool trying to mask my real feeling for 4 straight years. BTW I realized today that Profs don’t appreciate swearing in the class.


Warning Signs in Earnings Reports

Post copied from a textbook in management accouning (Damodaran)

The most troubling thing about earnings reports is that we are often blindsided not by the items that get reported (such as extraordinary charges) but by the items that are hidden in other categories. We would suggest the following checklist that should be reviewed about any earnings report to gauge the possibility of such shocks.

· Is earnings growth outstripping revenue growth by a large magnitude year after year?
This may well be a sign of increased efficiency, but when the differences are large and continue year after year, you should wonder about the source of these efficiencies.

· Do one-time or non-operating charges to earnings occur frequently? The charge itself might be categorized differently each year – an inventory charge one year, a restructuring charge the next and so on. While this may be just bad luck, it may also reflect a conscious effort by a company to move regular operating expenses into these non-operating items.

· Do any of the operating expenses, as a percent of revenues, swing wildly from year to year? This may suggest that the expense item (say SG&A) includes non-operating expenses that should really be stripped out and reported separately.

· Does the company manage to beat analyst estimates quarter after quarter by a cent or two? Not every company is a Microsoft. Companies that beat estimates year after year are involved in earnings management and are moving earnings across time periods. As growth levels off, this practice can catch up with them.

· Does a substantial proportion of the revenues come from subsidiaries or related holdings? While the sales may be legitimate, the prices set may allow the firm to move earnings from unit to the other and give a misleading view of true earnings at the firm.

· Are accounting rules for valuing inventory or depreciation changed frequently?

· Are acquisitions followed by miraculous increases in earnings? An acquisition strategy is difficult to make successful in the long term. A firm that claims instant success from such as strategy requires scrutiny.

· Is working capital ballooning out as revenues and earning surge? This can sometimes let us pinpoint those firms that generate revenues by lending to their own customers. None of these factors, by themselves, suggest that we lower earnings for these firms but combinations of the factors can be viewed as a warning signal that the earnings statement needs to be held up to higher scrutiny.


Female Drinking

I met this girl today, who wanted to have a drink at the college party, but did want to be seen pouring her own drink. So she asked guys to get her fruit juice laced with Whiskey.
I have bought a round or 2 of drinks to various girls, but somehow I felt really awkward carrying her glass.

1) First i thought, its because of the fact that I realized that she drinks: But I really don’t care, nor does it matter
2) Then I thought it might because I was not ready to spend 1-2 minutes that I spend in getting her glass… but its unlikely
3) Then I thought it might be because I was appalled by her attempts to mask her drinking problem (she did have 4 rounds of alcohol), but then I have seen people going to much greater extend for masking their problems/addictions… and this won’t list even in the top 10.

What do you think is the reason for me to feel so much awkward while helping her get her drinks.


Conservative vs. Liberal

Today a wise man (Lets call him Ventilator Baba) pointed out a major difference between the political use and the dictionary meaning of these 2 words.

Conservative: A person who is reluctant to accept changes and new ideas
Liberal:Showing or characterized by broad-mindedness

Hence in Orkut/Facebook when the websites ask people about their political views most of my friends write Liberal. However they don’t realize that in the political science

CONSERVATIVES – believe in personal responsibility, limited government, free markets, individual liberty, traditional American values and a strong national defense. Believe the role of government should be to provide people the freedom necessary to pursue their own goals.
Conservative policies generally emphasize empowerment of the individual to solve problems.

LIBERALS – believe in governmental action to achieve equal opportunity and equality for all, and that it is the duty of the State to alleviate social ills and to protect civil liberties and individual and human rights. Believe the role of the government should be to guarantee that no one is in need. Believe that people are basically good.

Liberal policies generally emphasize the need for the government to solve people’s problems.

I hope this helps atleast some of us in sending out the right signals.


Reservation in IITs

As per this article

IIT selected just 159 Students (SC/ST) for 414 seats. Then going by the past trend, 40 of these would drop out because of the ill treatment they will receive in the 1 year long preparatory course and/or poor grades.
I could never understand is that why there is so much fuss about helping 120 students p.a.?


bullish or bearish

The stockbroker’ s secretary answered his phone one morning. ‘I’m sorry,’ she said,

‘Mr. Bradford’s on another line.’

‘This is Mr. Ingram’s office,’ the caller said. ‘We’d like to know if he’s bullish or bearish right now.’

‘He’s talking to his wife,’ the secretary replied.

‘Right now I’d say he’s sheepish.’