SWOT Analysis

SWOT analysis Matrix Listen to this postMany people associate SWOT analysis with the SWAT police force. SWAT team is a Special Weapon And Tactics team while SWOT analysis, the subject of this post, is the identifications and sorting of the Strength, Weakness, Opportunities and threats. Strengths and weaknesses are internal issues, however, opportunities and threats are external matters which can be difficult to find and Control. Brainstorming may be required during the SWOT analysis because some of the items are not obvious and need abroad vision and “out of the box” thinking. Some of the items in the SWOT analysis can fit in two sides of the matrix. They can be a strength and threat at the same time or can be weakness but a good opportunity to explore. I used SWOT analysis before analyze Acer company in this blog. And I wrote in the blog before about my personal reasons to start a blog and that are the advantages and disadvantages to so so. I am today using the same subject for the SWOT analysis. The lost below is the result of my personal SWAT to blog. I have use the “Priority Matrix” to help me in the SWAT arrangement and I find it very useful application to use on your iPad if you are welling to spend few dollars.

SWOT analysis for personal blogging:
Strength :

  • Crystallize and integrate ideas while writing
  • My writing will be global
  • Writing release stress
  • Have many thoughts to share
  • Can use school work for the blog
  • Long work experience
  • My Academic knowledge

Weakness:

  • Some people may misunderstand the thoughts
  • Might get negative comments
  • Writing in English is a challenge
  • I have limited time for bogging

Opportunities :

  • Can blog on anywhere and anytime
  • Blog site is free
  • International reputation
  • People will ask for my expertise
  • Rewrite the post into s book
  • Display my ability to integrate the thoughts

Threats:

  • Hackers may change what I wrote
  • May offend some people with my thoughts
  • Host site may accidentally delete the blog
  • Readers may copy my writing for their personal use.

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My Family Vacation

I started my summer vacation few days ago. I chose Dubai as the best place for this year’s vacation because my available time for traveling is short and Dubai has good offers on its top hotels and resorts. The flight to Dubai was reasonable but the full stay with the kids was interesting. The TV was on kids channels all the time (although they had their separate room but they always preferred staying in the same room I am setting in. I chose a hotel with many swimming pools and water rides (The Atlantis) I take the kids for a swim everyday under the Dubai hot sun and try to watch three kids at the same time. I got help from my wonderful wife who stay nearby watching us under the hot sun without enjoying the temperature-controlled swimming pool. The smell of chlorine is filing my nose until I go to sleep and my body ache to the point I can not pull my self up out of bed in the morning. Physically I feel exhausted but mentally I am very happy that I got this time to spend it totally with the family. I love kids and I have need hugging and kissing them constantly during this vacation to the point they started pushing me away?. Share/Bookmark

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How to set your personal goals?

Listen to this postPersonal GoalsMany of us had assembled a toy or a piece of furniture before. You probably did the assembly with the help of the instruction sheet or a drawing which was folded inside the box. Researchers found that many people spend long time to plan their vacation and take care of the little details to enjoy every hour of their vacation time. The same people
would not spend half of that time to plan their lives. Planning our life and careers would start by identifying our short-term and long-term goals. We should articulate the goal and then set a plan to achieve them. We need to select the achievable and realistic goals to improve our life. You will be able to set your personal goals and write a plan to achieve by simply reading the following text and follow the simple guidelines.

Many of us had assembled a toy or a piece of furniture before. You probably did the assembly with the help of the instruction sheet or a drawing which was folded inside the box. Researchers found that many people spend long time to plan their vacation and take care of the little details to enjoy every hour of their vacation time. The same people would not spend half of that time to plan their lives. Planning our life and careers would start by identifying our short-term and long-term goals. We should articulate the goal and then set a plan to achieve them. We need to select the achievable and realistic goals to improve our life. You will be able to set your personal goals and write a plan to achieve by simply clicking on and reading the following PDF file the simple guidelines. Please click on “How to set your personal goals” to download the file.


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Ethical Management

Listen to this postGebler (2006) defines culture as an objective picture of the organization. The culture is also considered as the employees’ and managers’ sum of collective values and behaviors (Gebler, 2006). These values and behaviors will govern the organizational ethical practices. One of the leaders’ important tasks is to maintain these values and behaviors. The organization moves toward an ethical culture only if it understands the full range of values and behaviors needed to meet its ethical goals (Gebler, 2006). The leaders should demonstrate a sense of right versus wrong, and concern for others. These leaders are leading by example to help the organization to enforce the ethical behaviors (Angus-Leppan, Metcalf, & Benn, 2010). For example, Google top management are leading by example. They maintain high visibility and communicate their views and ideas with the workers while they are in the corridors of the buildings or in the cafeteria.
Ethical behavior and corporate social responsibility have become a must to maintain the organization’s permit to operate in a community (O’Donohue & Nelson, 2009). Resolve conflicts between the organizational expectations and employees preference to help in giving the employees the freedom to make the ethical decision (O’Donohue & Nelson, 2009).

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References:

Angus-Leppan, T., Metcalf, L., & Benn, S. (2010). Leadership styles and CSR practice: an examination of sensemaking, institutional drivers and CSR leadership. Journal of Business Ethics, 93(2), 189-213. doi: 10.1007/s10551-009-0221-y

Gebler, D. (2006). Creating an ethical culture. [Article]. Strategic Finance, 87(11), 28-34.

O’Donohue, W., & Nelson, L. (2009). The Role of Ethical Values in an Expanded Psychological Contract. Journal of Business Ethics, 90(2), 251-263. doi: 10.1007/s10551-009-0040-1

Quite time to think

Listen to this postI was fortunate to visit Versailles Palace in France many years ago. After the guided tour we were given free time to walk through the place gardens. The gardens were beautiful and a simple walk through them would reduce your blood pressed by at least 10 mmHg. At the start of my walk I noticed an elderly couple setting on a long chair watching the beautiful view in front of them. They were about one meter a part (3 feet) from each other. I continued my walk around and came back to the same spot after 20 minutes and set down on a single chair and notice that the couple still at their same silence and still looking at the beautiful view ahead. I thought that what they were doing was boring and they might have reached the age were nothing matters anymore. So I sat and started enjoying the view and get lost in my thoughts. Before I knew it, I spent more than an hour of complete silence, similar to what the elderly couple were doing, and it was wonderful!

A distant family member in his 70’s used to set in his wheelchair for hours watching the sea. When we pass-by and greet him he sometimes replay to us and sometimes he just ignore us as if we do not exist. He seems lost in his thoughts and living his past by just watching the sea. Few years after that gentleman pass away I went to the Maldives islands. I use to set in the balcony of my bungalow after the tiresome deep water dives. Each time I set I get lost in my thoughts and spend hours relaxing and enjoying the ocean’s calm waters.
Lately, I do not have the luxury of traveling to these nice places but I still set alone in quite places for at least 30 minutes 3 times every week. I lay down or set without watching TV, listening to music or reading a book. I just relax and let my thoughts flow slowly and reflect on the things I have done or the problems I face. After about 30 minutes I would have good thoughts and practical solutions to whatever challenges I have. Just by simply setting alone and thinking. No TV, no music, no reading or writing, just plain simple thinking. My best ideas and most important decisions were the results of those quite sessions. The sad thing that many people live their lives without setting once in a quite session like that, and they miss the opportunity to clear up their minds and generate wonderful ideas. Go ahead, please try it for half an hour and you will start generating wonderful thoughts and ideas after you pass the 30 minutes mark, trust me!

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Why Do I Blog?

Listen to this postI was asked by my friends the same question “why do you write in a blog” or sometimes they ask “what’s the point of writing a blog”. Well, there are many reasons for me to write in a blog and I hope you would agree with me on these reasons. The first reason is materializing my thoughts and ideas in a written form that I can document for myself and the others to read. I have mentioned my love of reading especially business books. From reading so many books I would come up with thoughts that can be integrated in a single idea. I would write this idea  in the blog for everybody to read. I sometimes write to answer a question that my readers asked or some of my friends had consulted me on a business subject. Many of the post are actually part of my doctoral program classwork and homework. I research them and write them for class participation but then I would post them in the blog for others to benefit from them.

This post is the 100th post since I started blogging. My target to write 3 posts every week to reach a minimum of 153 post by the end of this year. Reaching 100 post in the first six months is exceeding the preset target and I hope I can sustain this enthusiasm. I have written two books so far and plan to combine the posts in this blog into a book later on after I write enough information. Writing the book in small portions like these posts would relieve me from having to write the book on one go which will needs dedicated time and effort (and both are not available).

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Are You Changing Your Work-Space?

Listen to this postMany companies had redesigned their office space from the traditional set up which have rooms designated for one or two office workers to cubicles or open space design. Some cultures would accept the new set up but others would like to  maintain their privacy in the office. According to Jones (2007), the main purpose of the organizational structure is “to control the way people coordinate their actions to meet organizational goals and to control the means used to motivate people to achieve these goals” (p. 7). The workspace is defined as an organizational resource and is designed to advance the organizational goals (Vaske & Donnelly, 1999). The marketplace especially the international market is influenced and segmented by religion (Wenger, 2004).

Organizations would attract workers who conform with the dominant religion in the organization and in the environment, employees with different religions may face glass ceiling and bear stereotype effect during promotions and salary increase. Wenger (2004) relates religious marketplace theory to the failure of communism to replace religion in China. Religion may have a positive effect from the point view of some (having the same religion) or seen as a hurdle by others. Many companies in the Middle East region are changing their work place set up to cubical or open-space set up similar the Western office layout. The new theories may support the open-space layout and “barrier removal” to enable workers to interact openly but not all agree. New researchers have found that such optimism does not continue when workers find that they lose privacy and independence with it (Chan, Beckman, & Lawrence, 2007). Another research found employees’ satisfaction decreased after they moved from the traditional office layout to the open-space layout (Chan, Beckman, & Lawrence, 2007).

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References:

Chan, J. K., Beckman, S. L., & Lawrence, P. G. (2007). Workplace design: A new managerial imperative. California Management Review, 49(2), 6-22.

Jones, G. (2007). Organizational theory, design, and change (5 ed.). New York: Pearson Prentice Hall.

Vaske, J. J., & Donnelly, M. P. (1999). A value-attitude-behavior model predicting wildland preservations voting intentions. Society & Natural Resources, 12(6), 523.

Wenger, J. E. (2004). Official vs. underground protestant churches in China: Challenges for reconciliation and social influence. Review of Religious Research, 46(2), 169-182.

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Cultural Differences in Business

Listen to this postCultural differences are considered as one of the main reasons for work stress and management conflicts during business relationship development in the U.S and China (Li, 2009). Chinese avoid confrontation especially when the conflict is with someone who holds authorities. The Chinese believe that direct approach with the boss will ruin their relationship with him (Johnston & Hongmei, 2009). Cultural diversity has two dimensions, the first consists of age, ethnicity, gender, race and sexual affection orientation which molds the workers self-image and fundamental worldview. The second dimension manipulates the workers self-esteem and definition because it consists of “educational background, geographic location, income, marital status, religious belief” (Edewor & Aluko, 2007, p. 190). The cultural diversity would strengthen the differences between two countries. Globalization help advancing business growth and taping economical resources but cultural differences would limit theses business opportunities. Pinggong (2009) stress the importance of not isolating one culture from the other but to try to relate the cultural experiences and integrate them to have a harmonious organizational culture.

The Islamic culture stress the importance of bonding and team work. Similar to the Chinese culture, the Islamic culture would demand respect and obedience to the superiors and leaders. Most of the Arabic cultures (mostly Muslims) are build on the fundamental of electing an Amire (leader) and then follow the leader whom the community had selected.
Reference:
Edewor, P. A., & Aluko, Y. A. (2007). Diversity management, challenges and opportunities in multicultural organizations. [Article]. International Journal of Diversity in Organisations, Communities & Nations, 6(6), 189-195.

Johnston, L. M., & Hongmei, G. (2009). Resolving conflict in the chinese and U.S. realms for global business entities. (English). [Article]. China Media Report Overseas, 5(4), 22-36.

Li, C. (2009). Managing business relationship development: A cross-cultural perspective. Portuguese Journal of Management Studies, 14(2), 123-147.

Pinggong, Z. (2009). Rethinking the impact of globalization and cultural identity in China. [Article]. China Media Research, 5(2), 25-34


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Don’t Complain, It is only Hot!

Weather forecast Listen to this postThe weather in Kuwait is intolerable, I hear complains about the weather from everybody and from every direction. The complains are coming from Kuwaitis and ex-patriots who lived in Kuwait for at least 15 year. So, what is new? If you are wondering what is the temperature like in Kuwait then you have to understand that at midnight the temperature was 31oC (87oF). The expected highs for the next few days is above 50oC (122oF). OK, so the temperature is high and the weather is intolerable but we should look at the bright side of living in Kuwait. With the hot weather, Kuwait never had a natural disaster. Kuwait never experience an earthquake that registered more than 3 on Richter scale. Kuwait never experience tsunami, floods, hurricanes or volcanic eruption. On top of that, Kuwait is blessed with oil and a lot of it. the natural resource is enough to tolerate the hot weather. So we can afford air conditioning and nice cars to drive around in the hot afternoons. Nest time you sweet go ahead and take a cold shower and enjoy life.

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Forming And Growing A Team

I was asked to give a one hour presentation for non-profit society, but the suggested time for the presentation was conflicting with my schedule. So I went for the next best thing which was video recording the lecture and then presenting it for the audience at their convenience. The lecture language was Arabic as requested by the audience. The video give brief history of team formation as introduction then describe the “forming, storming, norming and performing” steps of the team life cycle. The video is 22 minutes long and I assure you that it will not be boring.  Enjoy!

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