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March 11, 2009

my favourite game; about knowledge, learning, education…

I lost it again Word count: 1015 (including quotations)

Quotations are back!! Though what I'll try to do here might be something over my head (is this the right expression?)

First let's start with something that supports my previous post:The art and science of asking questions is the source of all knowledge.Thomas Berger

Let's try to ask some questions here then. In few months (or know) when they will ask us "what have you learned in your master degree?" or "What makes you different from other people?" or similar things what will be our answer? Will (are) we be satisfied with our answer?

When we will go out from here there will be people with greater knowledge or experience about, global issues, people, six sigma, product development, asset management, robust design, financial analysis or whatever we think we learned here in WMG. So what does this whole year really gives us? Well I think Paul tried to explain it to us for more than once; if I understood correctly : ) Simply things we learned from the processes we were implementing is more important the content... ?

Let's see if I'll be go deeper a bit with some quotations, there might be repetitions:

"...In school, you're taught a lesson and then given a test. In life, you're given a test that teaches you a lesson.Tom Bodett

So true isn't it? basically it's not different from what we have been saying for a while; which is learning comes through experience ( theory of knowledge- yes Deming again). In real life even when they teach you a lesson usually it is to make you understand the test not solve it. So wouldn't it be better to learn how to solve a test and learn from it?

"Education is what remains when we have forgotten all that we have been taught”  George Savile

Again isn't that what remains is what we learned from implementing the processes? For example no one gave us a lecture about how having a output from seminars is important...

"...Learn as if you were to live forever.Mahatma Gandhi

I'm pretty sure that he talks about another aspect of learning, but I was thinking if I knew I'd live forever I would like to know more about how to learn things, because given you are in a infinite time frame what would be the percentage of time you would spend on financial analysis for example. Unless you are crazy and do analysis forever at one point you bound to feel the need to learn something else. Which taken to the limit would make the subject you selected to learn irrelevant. I’ll buy a drink to the first person who can understand this and explain to me (not joking). I'll also buy a dinner if that person watches the movie "The Man From Earth" and talks about it relating to this.

To know that we know what we know, and that we do not know what we do not know, that is true knowledge.Copernicus

I think this is also related to asking questions (or theory of knowledge). Basic if we can understand the limits of our knowledge we might be able to find out this that are unknown to us, but on the other hand we shouldn’t forget that there are things unknowable to us (hurray Deming again). This knowledge is the basis to start learning and creating new knowledge.

Those that know, do. Those that understand, teach.Aristotle

I think here the question is about the characteristic of knowledge. Knowing how to implement DMAIC is also knowledge, but knowledge that would come from understanding it is totally different because it would be also related to PDSA, scientific methodology and so on; which also links to my previous blog, in a way. We also talked about the importance of understanding in different themes; like today in debate we said people should understand the standards so that they can go further.

Discussion is an exchange of knowledge; an argument an exchange of ignorance.”  Robert Quille

As I mentioned debate I think this is a good insight. I believe one of the reasons we had a peaceful debate today is that because we know each other to well to ignore and we also know our aim is actually exchanging knowledge.

Always acknowledge a fault. This will throw those in authority off their guard and give you an opportunity to commit more.Mark Twain

I find this a funny way to look at mistakes. Actually when we create a free-to-make-mistakes environment potentially we are allowing more mistakes; it is not a problem as long as people learn from it and company didn’t go bust because of it. But sometimes though people acknowledge their mistakes they don’t really think, reflect and learn from it, do they? If we ever become a manager we should make sure they learn from it. I’m sure we might be able to find funny (and true) examples if we start to talk about relationships : )

The last part is for my own satisfaction :

Nothing that is worth knowing can be taught.Oscar Wilde

If we link to above, to Aristotle, and say that they can’t teach because they haven’t understood it, and conclude “nothing worth knowing is understandable” and go on to say maybe we think those things are worth knowing because we are curious about them, as we don’t understand them and… well don’t bother with my moment of insanity; but this is what my favourite writer things (indirectly, through one of his characters):

"I’ve been making a list of the things they don’t teach you at school. They don’t teach you how to love somebody. They don’t teach you how to be famous. They don’t teach you how to be rich or how to be poor. They don’t teach you how to walk away from someone you don’t love any longer. They don’t teach you how to know what’s going on in someone else’s mind. They don’t teach you what to say to someone who’s dying. They don’t teach you anything worth knowing" Neil Gaiman


January 06, 2009

Financial Simulation – very useful

I've studied the financial module for two days so far. Although, my first degree involved some modules about accounting and finance, i totally almost forget. This module help refreshing me a lot. I was a production manager. Actually, along the way we played the simulation, i kept asking myself how can i be better for the role because i hv not much idea how to do it. When the simulation ended i think to be more effective and efficient production manager, i should be able to foresee what will be happpened... because when my group result came out i found that if i could think about changing a machine to produce other products, our company would get more 50 million dollar. However, going bankruptcy is not the point of the simulation, i think what i and also my classmate have learnt about it is how to deal with the change because i think not everybody used to play the role the got before and also whatever failure we faced is a great lesson of our learning process as well.

January 02, 2009

the second day of 2009 ;P

Finally, it's 2009. I'm doing one of assignment which is about organization, performance and people. A company which is used to be a case study is Generl Electric. To be honest, before i learnt this module, i dont know much about the company but just knew that it's an international company which pay a competitive package to its employees in Thailand and in another way people in the company have to work hard. After l studied about the company for a while that make me known that why the company has successed and why its people has to work hard. One performance appraisal method of GE is Forced Ranking. Actually, it has many names such as Vitality curve or Forced distribution. This may been seen as crucial way to evaluate employee but in turn the former CEO of GE told that it make the unperformed staffs know that they may not be suitable for the positiion they currently are at.

For me, from my experience, especially in my homecountry traditional working culture, politic issue can influence the performance appraisal process. At that time, i heard from my colleagues who told me that he thought it was not fair to avarage a performance score because the managment level has limitation of budget to reward employees. This is because the management didn't evaluate the employees' performance honestly and some employees doubted about that. Finally, it made my colleague had no motivation to work.

What i've learnt from this module is a connection between these three words...  

ps. Happy new year to everybody :)

December 14, 2008

Reflection from LE

So far, i've passed the leadership and excellence module for more than a week. Before studying this module, leadership in my mind mostly refer to my experiences such as my boss etc.. but after studying i've got broader thought about it although i can have some ideas when we were asked in the class but i never think about it before. For example, situation is related to leadership, this give an idea for me  that every single minute can have differrent leader although a person who is leader at that time may not know that he/she is leader.

Besides, there was an activity which i think it might be very useful which is coaching activity but we didn't spend much time on it. This can help us exchanging experiences and perspectives.

Also, this module gave us a chance to being a leader. This was very helpful but sometimes we need Paul to activate us to dare taking a risk being a leader.

This module didn't have any formal lectures which seem like we almost study by ourself. This has both pros and cons which has been dicussing topic since we start this course. I wont give my opinion whether is good but i just share my feeling that sometime when i sit in the other lecture class i felt sleepy..actually i dont know why.....sometimes i asked myself that whether i like self-studying...haha

December 05, 2008

CSR presentation & Leadership exercise

This week for me is meaningful.

Tuesday, I had my coaching practice with our tutor.

Thursday, My first formal presentation in MBE.

Today, My first actual leader practice in MBE.

For our CSR presentation, we made quite a lot effort to it. We spent at least three afternoon together to discuss that topic, for at first it made us feel quite confused. And it was the first formal presentation for me in MBE class. I felt a little nervous, not because of talking in public, but because I'm worried if I forgot certain English words. I had came here for almost 4 months, and sometimes I still feel hard to find a proper English word to express myself. I really lack of vocabulary...I have to work hard on it!!!

Talk back to the CSR. Each of us has some initial ideas about CSR. But after this project, after so much researshes we did, I think I get a more clear clue, especially on the measure part. Also learned a lot from other group's presentation, they gave us a lot of examples of famous company about their best practices.

Today's exercise, I voluntary to be a leader. When I had my undergraduate in China, I was the leader of the whole class, about 60 people. But since I came here, I never be a leader, because I always worried about my English. So today's exercise was a milestone for me. And from the feedback, I knew what I'm lack of and knew what to do next time. I'll learn to delegate and trust my teammates. And also, make plans and give the plan clearly to the team members. Although we got 1800 points, we still have too much to improve.

This week for me is amazing, though I was so tired. And I really want to thank Paul and my colleagues. The short presentation of leadership, the presentation of CSR, and the leader of the exercise, you always encourage me and told me that I did well. I really appreciate for that, and I will take more challenge in the future time, and hope we all will be stronger after we finished the time in MBE.

December 04, 2008

Leadership and Excellence

We almost finish the LE module. There have been some lessons about learning processes. For example, i feel that the mini-project which is formed as a case study style is very useful because we can see how we can apply and also we can get many opinion from both Paul and our classmates. And another interesting point is each group interpret the given questions in different ways. However, there has been a discussion about our learning style.Someone told that this style may not be effective and effecient enough.... for me, i'm still thinking about it because i can understand what my friend said and still cannot make my mind that which way i prefer. And also we changed a way of seminar, although it's tougher because we have to discuss in a group first but i think it's more interesting and efficient than the previous one... Pual gave us a chance to find a way that we think it's more suitable. One think that i'm thinking is we have learnt about the leadership but how about being follwers ... how important it is......

December 03, 2008

Coaching exercise

Yesterday afternoon, coaching exercise.

I was lucky enough to coach Graeme, our tutor. Frankly speaking, I was so nervous at first, because I almost know nothing about him, and I also have no idea what he want me to achieve. If I do something on the wrong way, what will happen?

I'm the coacher, and he is the coachee.

First he said he has problems on planning. So much things to do but so little time, and it made him feel stressed. And I, directly gave him the advice to make a list and talk to him how to use this list can get the best benefit. He feels unhappy with my advice, and said he didn't like to make a list, balabala....Then, I realized that I was doing the wrong thing.

The second round of coaching. He got a problem in teamwork. He felt himself didn't be involved in a team, he seldom gave his opinions because so much other things boring him and he didn't have mood to do so. This time, I tried another way. I asked him about his own feelings in heart, asked him what he wanted himself to be and wanted others to treat him. Let him to think the reason of the problem. I also gave him some suggestions, but not in a direct way like you should do balabala. Instead I said' have you think about try to change your attitude?' I became a listener and guided him to find a solution by himself. This conversation was so happy, and I finally be a certificated coacher.

Compared with my classmates who are coaching someone they familiar with, I think it was a bigger challenge for me. I definitely experienced a real coaching exercise yesterday, so I said I was lucky, eventhrough at first I felt a little nervous.

Several points got from the exercise:

Be a good listener.

Build a safe talking environment, so the coachee can tell you the real throught of his heart.

Focus on the problem instead of directly go to the results and suggestions.

Try to let the coachee find the solutions by themselves, not just tell them what should do and what should not do.

November 29, 2008

My CBE PMA is forming

This week may be the tough week for everybody of us because we need to do both PMA and mini project but anyway we must pass through this soon.

Right now i'm working on the 3rd question of the CBE PMA and just sent feedforward to Paul and hopefully that my direction is right. It's really very useful like Pual said i used what Pual suggested in the PMA surgery session which is writing an introduction. A reason why it's helpful is the introduction can help me to see clearer picture what i gonna do.

With regards to the learning organization, i've read both roughly and deeply in some journal they are many sources mention about LO diffrently but most of them also mention about the fifth disciplines of Senge which i think he may be a pioneer in this area (anyway i'm not sure). So, i decided to do my PMA base on it.

May force be with me and my classmates.... :)

November 27, 2008

Leadership Definition and Hoshin Kanri

Today in the LE class, we talked about leadership definition which every group has the same notion about influcing which must be a part of leadership and that's true. I also agree with that. Another area which i'm still thinking is how leader can handle with a situation which he/she has to make a decision which may not be agreed by some subornidates. What i mean is about mental aspects. Because it's mean that the leader must be patient to criticism and try to put an effort until being able to prove an achievement of the goal.

And also today Paul remind us to write on the blog and actually i can see what his purpose is. Because i also can see advantages of blogging but one problem which i'm facing and also may b others are facing is Time Management. Yesterday i talked to Louis(Kang) that although we plan to do sth in a certain period of time but one important factor is our capability. For example, if we plan to read books for an hour but with our capability may be... we can't finish reading in an hour. And although Louis told Paul's suggestion about focusing only information we need from the books but i'm still thinking and try to find a way to overcome it.

The time past so fast. Now i'm researching HOSHIN which i've found something confusing. From the course note there are 7 steps of Hoshin Planing Process but from another source i also found 7 steps of Hoshin process which they are different. And also in the source mention about there are 2 kinds of activities in Hoshin process which are Breakthrough activities and Business Fundamental activities. Anyway, i'll b back to research more and hope that i can figure out what the differences are.

May force be with me... Haha :)

some debates of being a leader

During both CBE and LE module, we have been devided into different groups. In CBE, we talked quite more about leadership, but we didn't choose a leader during each team meeting or mini-project. Now in LE, we each time have a leader and we will give our personal feedbacks to the leader.

From this different situation, from the feedbacks we gave to each team leader this morning, I suddenly get back to a thought I had several weeks ago: Have a desire of being a leader not equal to be a good leader. And this actually come to a debate about is a leader born or made?

Personally speaking, I think a leader is born. I don't deny that some situation can make a leader, but if one don't have a potential to be a leader, if in his/her blood there is nothing about the desire to lead to organise to communicate or to let others work for him/herself, I really don't think he/she will be a good leader, no matter what a best situation he/she in or how hard others try to make he/she a leader.

From this point of view, leader is born. Situation may change, study and working experience may change, but one's intrinsic never change, or at least, hard to change. My undergraduate roommate, who is now studying in Stanford University which can demonstrate she is quite an excellent girl in academic area, is an example of my point. She don't like to lead, and also don't like others to lead her. She just hate such sort of things. In her mind, if we have something to discuss, if we have team meetings, OK, let's discuss, why we always need someone to lead and need someone to tell what to do and what not to do? Everyone has his/her own opinion in doing things, why I need to follow you? This thought maybe kind of extreme, but its someone's true thinking. She just focus her career life on research or other academic things, and do what's her duty well. I think people like this, no matter how hard you try to make them be a leader, they will not be a good leader. Because they don't have the desire!

This come to another debate: is desire enough for someone to be a good leader? Absolutely NOT. I have met so many people, they want to lead, they have too much confidence to be a leader, but they themselves are not a good leader at all. They don't know how to communicate with their fellows, they don't have clear target, they maybe always have a completely schedule but they are not good at time management and they cannot follow their schedule well, this, at the same time, will waste their fellows' time, and is quite bad for efficiency. Communication is quite an important part of being a good leader, during an effective communication, you can let your fellows try their best and give voluntary effort, in another words, maximise their potential.

What kind of person can be a good leader and How can a person be a good leader, this is quite a hard question, and depended on personal characters. This may also lead to so many debates. I'll post our team discussion of definition of leadership below and welcome any comment on it~~

Definition from LE team 2: Leadership is about influencing an individual or a group of people to maximise their potential for the achievement of a common goal.

and I will think a definition of leader sometime~~~

November 23, 2008

These days~

Quite a long time didn't write anything~not only this Warwick blog, but also my msn space, my xiaonei(Chinese facebook), etc.

Life in Warwick is so busy, but colourful. I attended CSSA which is Chinese Students Scholars Association, and I am a coordinator of Welfare department. We have 5 people of Welfare, have a meeting every Monday evening, and we definately did a lot these weeks. We hold the Mandarin Classes which is an attempt and an innovation of Warwick. We wrote proposal; we sent e-mails to both Chinese and Foreign students; we held two rounds of interviews to those who want to be a Mandarin mentor; and we held a welcome party for all the foreigners who want to attend our programme. This is such a wonderful experience and our five person's team worked quite happy together.

Beside the social acativities, I was also busy hunting my jobs. I attended lots of company's presentations, wrote my CV and several cover letters, did a number of on-line tests and also some open questions. Unfortunately, I think I'm not at a right time. The Credit Crunch, the Financial Crisis, and as an international students myself, It's really hard and even kind of unreality to find a job here. Sometimes I really feel upset of what I have to face...

Well~~~After the first GBE PMA, after the three weeks vacation( if it can be called a vacation), we had our OPP module. Actually it was quite a fun module and made me feel that life is full. Everyday we had fish exercises, to be a team with different people, but work for the same goal. We won different colours of fishes to get our final scores of the attending part of the course. I got one purple( which is my favourite colour^_^), three red and one yellow. Frankly speaking I wanted to keep that purple one as a memento, but it had to be collected to reuse...what a pity! Especially for someone like me who love purple and who love collection!~~Ok, bygones~

Friday night was such an amazing memory. We had our first MBE Bar. Good way to let us know each other more, and also good way to show others what we want them know more, such as our cooking, our singing, our dancing, etc. Really happy that night, and I do hope we can have more and more MBE Bars~~~haha

Ok, just stop here~time always gone fast, especially during weekends~Waiting for tomorrow's LE Module~~~and looking forward to seeing you guys~~

November 11, 2008

How i am…So far 11 Nov 08

After finished CBE module, i have done an assignment of GBE for almost 2 and a half weeks. First question has come up that why i've spent too much. And the answer i've got is... may be because this is a new style of learning which i need to adapt. However, another lesson what i've learnt is .... i should realize quicker that this has been a long time. Anyway, during searching data to do the assignment i found that it's fun to read various aspect of data and gain new knowledge... however, one thing which is not fun is... the assignment have to be finished and sent in order to evaluate marks... haha :$. There are 5 days left for this week. Next week module is quite interesting and as i've seen in the email which has been sent by the tutor. He told that we gonna work as a group again and he will let us do many activity. Let's see what it gonna b.

October 28, 2008

Past 2 weeks

It's almost 2 weeks i didn't write my blog.

After the latest time, i had a Global Business Environment class. When the course began, many of my friends including me suffered a bit about a lecturer's accent. However, we've gone through it although it's quite tough because we hv class from 9 to 6 and some days we had to sit in a group discussion but it's a good lesson that make me be more patient.  In the GBE class, there were many discussions between the tutor and students. What i found is... i may get used to OR prefer to study like the CBE style rather than just sitting in a lecture room because when i looked back to the period i did the CBE pre-module assignment i found that although i was confused so much about what i needed to do, i didn't feel bored or sleepy.... may be because we need to figure out what we had to answer the pre-module assigment question by ourselves ... and during that we have to think about it all the time we did... it's not like the lecture which sometime we can lose our concentration easily.

The last day of GBE, we studied about a credit crush phenomena. It like a chain effect which need intensive and collaborative attention to fix it.

And actually, in that week i should practice much on my presentation but i didn't because i ran out of my energy everyday i came back to my room however i spent an entire day on Saturday to revise my presentation in order to get more structuring and then i went to present it to my teammates on Sunday. On that Sunday, i hope that i would get an acceptable feedback from my teammates and i thought i got it. However, i still need to practice until the presentation day. In that time, i think that i would do my best and work hard was my strategy.

When the presentation day came, if i hv to evalutate myself i think i've got what i worked hard for although it could not be compared to others but for myself i've been satisfied my performance. Although Paul told that my English is fantastic, i still can't think so because what i presented on that day came from my practicing not my real capability... however, i will try to keep practicing for getting an improvement... i believe tha the more i do the more i gain.

But one thing which i'm concerned is... i used to use the motto (the more..., the more...) to overcome any troubles in the past but one thing i found is .... sometime when people try to overcome something, they may forget that what they really want because they just want to overcome. From my real life experience, when i had to choose which course i would select as a bachelor degree, i didn't think that what i really desired so i just selected the subject which has an opportunity to find job easily and when i studied i just thought that i would work hard in order to gain the degree and find a high salary job. And when i graduated and worked for 3 years i just realized that the subject i selected does not come from what i desired to be or to have ... however, what've done and selected are not useless... everything has it own value... because we may not be able to know what is right for us until we die...

Let's get back to talk about CBE study, the most of previous week classes were seminar, presentation and lecture... one thing that i've been impressed is the reflection section. Every morning, Paul let us to talk about a reflection (what we've learnt so far... not just about the academic aspect but also other aspects which we can discuss together to share and adjust the course content in order to be suitable for the class) and i found that a reason why i like this section because i often gain some thinking or lesson from Paul and my classmates.

Right now i'm in the first free week and have another 2 free weeks. Actually, it's not the real free weeks because there are 2 PMA to be finished. However, when i see back i think the time pass so fast and also our life is short .... so time management must need to be considered!!

October 26, 2008

Sharing Information

Writing about Manager…... from Abhishek's blog

Sharing of information is a very delicate subject. One might argue that you don't need to leave a company to share that information with someone. I think it's bit about personality and loyalty; or your morality.

In Coke case it wouldn't make any difference to workers to know the formula, but there are lots of situations, like the one Francisco told in his blog, really would affect the efficiency of the employee; how can a consultant work without knowing about the company anyway.

So, choose your employees wisely ( I know its very hard)  and create the environment to make sure to get their loyalty.

Obsessing that your employees will give the important information away is bit like thinking people will punch you : ) they won't as long as you don't give them any reason; but there is always a chance that there are mentally instable people : P

ok it is a bit silly, but anyway, you got the idea...


Back in warwick blogs; and skydiving

I haven't been writing anything for more than a week now and I just realised that actually I have so many things to write about... and I will begin with my first parachute decent experience...

I don't know if I'll be able to explaine myself but; I'm afraid of height, or maybe I should say I'm afraid of the possibility of falling from a high place. Because there is big difference. I can look down from a plane if door is sealed shut : )

So how did I managed to jump from a plane? good question.

It was a weekend trip actually. we had a 6-7 hours of ground training on Saturday and I was feeling those butteries I was talking about, even though we were on the ground, safe.Because we finished a bit late we couldn't jump on Saturday.Some we build our tents. I must say I love camping and it's been a while since my last camp so I was pretty excited about it.

After hanging around a bit we went to a tesco and bought some snack for the night and for the big day, than went  a local pub.It was bit expensive; there is no way I'm going to pay that chicken 10 pounds again : )

After the pub we slept relatively early as we needed our full concentration for the next day.At first it wasn't that cold..but..ahh morning... it... was... cold. and when you add that distance from tents to the toilet..... well you got the picture : )

After warming up, as we were the first group to jump we started to concentrate and we had a short refreshment training. And the most interesting thing is: no butterflies,yes,  not even a single one. I was so ready I could feel the training in me, that whole malfunction drill, count to 4 after jump, check canopy, if there is a malfunction: look,locate,cut-away, pull reserve, arch. I was so relaxed that I was thinking that could be a dance routine for top banana : P 

I used to play online war games with my friend (mostly Battlefield) and I have lots of funny memories how we try to jump from plane to plane and so on, I felt like I was one of those games. The drop zone was like those drop zones in the games,especially the fact that there was a constant music. Yes, I was definitely in the mood.

I was so ready that when our instructor asked who wants to go with the first plane my hand was in the air. Than we started to wear our jumpsuits and equipments, again I felt like a soldier or like an astronaut :D I know it is silly, but I believe it was those feelings that made me so brave (referencing myself). 

Then they called us... we walked through the drop zone, people were looking at us (:P),than they made the last arrangements and we get into the plane. It was a dornier G92 by the way. And was the second one to jump so I was sitting on the floor.First guy wasn't from Warwick but he joined the training with us. when we reached 3500 feet it was the time. They opened the door and instructor grabbed the first guy and said "in the door"...than go... he was out....

It was my turn.He looked at me. I look at my friends and shouted "see you guys" he said "in the door" and I was in the door. I wasn't looking down. You should be looking to the Instructor at that moment. than he said "go"... I was... I didn't hesitated for a millisecond, actually I could jump as I should have but at that moment your training kicks in and only thing you think is your canopy. I felt the parachute opening so I counted to 4 than looked up. It was not open what I was thinking was. "open,open,open,open, yeeeeeeesssssssssss" :D

Yep I actually shouted  "yes". Thing is there are 3 options, first one is if everything is ok(like mine), or there can be nuisance; which means problems you can handle, or malfunctions, which you should decide very quickly and do the reserve drill.  But I was ok : )

I took control of my canopy and it was as it should be than I looked for the drop zone and I realised I was going away...to the motorway... so I turned quickly, I was just out of the drop zone and I staying in the same spot;Because wind was so strong. I think that was the worst part as I didn't have time to play with my canopy. I had to face drop zone, constantly. I was looking for a place to land and trying to figure out how could I go back to drop zone. Well, I was bit lucky when it was 500 feet or so to the ground wind slowed down. I managed to enter drop zone and got ready for landing.Well It wasn't a smooth one but I was in the drop zone and I was ok : )

Oh I felt good. I was singing while I took my parachute and started walking to the hangar. I was ready for the second one.

But 20 minutes later we heard that wind was too strong for us so they suspended the student jumps..So long story short we returned to the campus.

Well this was a long one. but hopefully I will look back to this entry for years

I want to do my second jump and I'm thinking about going on the 8th of november...

I should finish my PMA's before that. If I can't I might choose not to open my parachute : P

and last thing, about the dangers: Well, it is dangerous of course but most of the deaths or injuries are caused by stupid mistakes or not follwoing your training. For example if you do more than one 360 turn you will be accelerating too much or you should close your legs during landing. That guy who jumped first didn't close his legs so he broke his ankle. Simple, right : )

It seems like England is the best place to try skydiving as equipments are really good. And plus we have a very good and big skydiving club and they are all ok, right?

I youf search for most dangerous sports, injury rate in fishing or cheerleading is higher anyway ;)

Respect ;)


October 24, 2008

Win an iPod nano

Tonight, I went to the presentation of "Capital One", and I WAN an iPod 8GB nano. How unbelievable!

I'm a girl almost never ask any question in public~maybe it's related to China's traditional education method~or maybe it's just I myself who don't like ask questions in public~ But today, the chairman said the one who ask the best question can get an iPod as a prize! How fantastic! My mp3 has already be 4 years old, and it's really a great time to change it~ After this thought, I began to prepare my question~~~

Frankly speaking, it's really hard for me to ask questions. I always afraid if the question is not good enough or even is stupid, I will lose my face, though I know others don't think it like this. Especially, if I asked in English, and if my English is not good enough and once I came into some problem, what should I do??? However, today, when such a big PRIZE in front of me, I told myself: it's worth trying! And unfortunately, once I got this thought, my face began to turn red and my heart began to beat faster....I really cannot find a proper word to express myself!

During the presentation and the question time, I came out 3 questions which I think maybe some kind of value. One is about the balance between being an investor and being the company which be invested. The second is about the price of stock within the banks and the whole market, and some comments on the whole trend (because they gave us a graph of the stock price). And the last one is about its future development in Asia countries, including the strategy and other sort of things.



Finally, I rose my hand. And I choose the last question to ask. And things absolutely went very well, though I could definitely feel that my face turned red and red~~~A deep breath~~~and after all the questions, the chairman said the Asia question is the most interesting one~~~And lucky Ally, got her first iPod nano~~~

I was so excited, not only because of the prize, but the more important: I finally surpass myself! I can ask questions in public, I can ask questions in English in public, and I can ask valuable questions in English in public!

It's really a good start! And today is really such a special day that can be added to my life-memory. I will remember today, together with the state of mind, and give myself a new challenge!

October 13, 2008

differet learning styles

One week's CBE study had ended. I learned a lot during this week. But each time I wanted to write something, I found it quite hard to express myself~

During my last about 18 years of study life, I had never had a class like this. In China, teacher is someone who mostly be the representative of truth and authority. In China, we never call a teacher only by his/her name, instead we should call "teacher+family name". If a teacher is called only by the last name, he must be thought of unrespected and it's definitely run counter to the traditional culture of China.

In China, as our teachers are always be highly respected, and also as we got the biggest population in the world, we seldom have opportunity to talk in the class. We learn what the teacher  told in the class. We seldom or even never have group discussion in school. Teacher is definitely the only leader of the whole class. What we should do is just sitting down and making notes of what the teacher says. However, don't talk in the class doesn't mean we cannot express our ideas or we cannot voice when the teacher make a mistake. KongZi, who was the founder of China's culture, had encouraged people to ask questions. So, if we have something don't understand or have some ideas, we can talk to teachers after class. And now, after years of learning habit, when we come to a foreign country to further the study, we can easily find that in class, most Chinese students prefer not to talk in public. They just sit there, listen, and make notes. And this kind of state always be considered by westerners as "no thinking, no learning, and no passion in discussion". What a misunderstanding!

Hpwever, now, I'm studying in the class which require quite a high ability of presentation and leading and such sort of things. Although in China, I had been the monitor for several years and I got many opportunities to practise my personal abilities, I also find that it's quite hard  for me to fit for this new studying style in a short time. However, I'm trying: trying to think like a westerner; trying to speak and express as others do; and trying to be someone who absolutely be part of the UK's culture and life.

I  really got too much to do. Life is not easy. However, I have hope in mind, which can give me more power and motion. Memorize the expectation eyes of my family and friends, I will be so delighted and will strive for a bigger progress~~~

October 12, 2008

Who knows

So far, the course hv started for 1 week but i don't feel that it's just one week. There have been manythings to learn, to adapt, to confront. I've been asking myself how to tackle to any coming issues. What we study can be applied well to human living. Sometimes i think that may be ... many theories are based on something in common but they just are intepreted or presented in various ways which depend on its objective. However, one thing which my course leader often mentions is a time management which i'm not quite sure whether i can do like what he recommend or not  because it seem like every minutes has its own value but in my opinion each person also has his/her limitation to do the same thing. Although a result of our study (i mean a grade) is not important but it's undeniable that it's still a  common measurement around the world. So, what is important for studying ... if the answer is learning style... how can anybody know that which style is the best or which one should be admired.... it seem like ... actually nobody knows what is the ture or false.... who knows....

my today blog may be a little bit confusing... haha... hope u enjoy it...

October 10, 2008

When have you researched enough?

Writing about When do you know you have researched enough? from Lila's blog

Lila raises some interesting points about when have you done enough research. My thoughts on this for the Management for Business Excellence students follows.

For the team study phase of the Creating Business Excellence module you have a number of projects to complete. Each of those projects could be studied for many hours, let’s say several hundred hours for a reasonably in-depth literature review. Each team member only has 30 hours to spend on pre-module work and this has to be split between the projects appropriately. If you refer to the learning objectives for the module, by now you will hopefully feel that these objectives will be achieved by working for a total of 100 hours. Your question indicates to me that you are in the process of making your own learning decisions, a key element of critical autonomy in which you go beyond the learning objectives set and start reflecting on your progress.

What all this leads to is study to the depth and breadth that time allows, recognizing that you will not be able to cover everything, and make objective choices on what to place emphasis.

Please do not be tempted to spend longer than the total time allocated for each phase of your study. As wonderful as it is to enjoy researching a topic of interest, your degree comprises many elements and focusing on a few to the exclusion of the others is a recipe for disaster from a qualification viewpoint.

October 08, 2008

The first day of self–studying

Today is my really first day of self-studying...it's not easy because everything is in English... not only translation is needed but also intepretion is needed.... so my reading speed is lower.... but hopefully it will be improved day by day. I've researched about Malcolm and Deming Model today... and I found that in an issue such as customer focusing... it can be interpretted in many angel... because i think that both of Malcolm and Deming also have somethings in common but they are interpreted in different way.... however, i'm still not quite clear about it... so i can't write much.

What is leadership?

The Management for Business Excellence course started last week with registration and induction and the intake of 24 started the first module, Creating Business Excellence on Monday. Organized into 4 teams, the module starts with 30 hours team study on 6 mini-projects.

I suggested that there was an opportunity for everyone to lead a project; everyone could take a turn in monitoring the use of time, managing the paperwork etc. No instruction was given on how any of this could best be achieved and it appears from recent blog posts that there are different ideas about leadership and there exists in some teams frustration and perhaps a little tension. So perhaps the question that arises is “What is leadership?”

Bernard Bass, a respected scholar on leadership, has written that there are as many definitions of leadership as there have been attempts to define it, and so it is perhaps to be expected that ideas about leadership differ when people join a course from different parts of the world and are placed in a team that ensures the widest cultural mix.

I have analyzed 20 definitions of leadership that have been published in journals over the last 50 years and conclude that my definition of non-coercive leadership captures the essence of all of these definitions. Leadership is the process of influencing the thoughts and activities of followers toward achievement of shared goals. This definition implies that the leadership is non-coercive, otherwise the goals would not be shared. They may be agreed due to the use of power or fear, but not necessarily agreed and I think that this is most relevant to the team situation in the Management for Business Excellence course.

There is a great difference between personal power and positional power. If someone assumes leadership of one of the Creating Business Excellence projects, the other team members may go along with that person. But he or she has not been granted positional power by the group, and I think that is unlikely to ever happen in this scenario in which teams are made up of future leaders in whatever career they choose.

Thus, unable to rely on positional power to coerce team members to follow, the leader in this situation has to use personal power to influence and this must surely start with identification of goals for the task that all share. That’s all very well, but have we got time for this? Wouldn’t it be simpler to give the leader the positional authority and let him/her get on with the task? We could do that but this would not be leadership (in my opinion), it would be headship. Headship, through positional power, can influence the activities of followers, but will their thoughts be influenced in the ‘right’ direction? Will the goals be shared? Without hearts and minds working towards achievement of shared goals, how can headship compete with effective leadership?

If as I do, you find it useful to look at extremes, take a look at any one of a number of 20th century dictators and compare their accomplishments to a thought leader such as Gandhi. I know whom I would prefer to follow.

October 07, 2008


Actually, there are manythings I would like to recall to write in the blog but i'm not sure how much i can recall. I think i will write it down whenever i can recognise.

Today, we had no class in the morning which is good for me... it's unbeleivable that i fell sleep after I got up... but it made me fresh. However, there has been something i'm concerned in my mind which is my communicative skill in English. Actually, I've realized that I have this problem since yesterday. Yesterday, I came back to my room with so much fatigue and i try to find out what made me feel like that. Then, i may get the answer which is my English communicative skill because most of times when i was in a group discussion there were somethings i would like to say but i can't speak in English. And another cause of my fatigue may be because i'm in adjustment period again. This is because there is something changed in my life ... which may be the course starting. And i just notice that everytime when there is something changed in my life i'm always confused myself and sometime feel disappoint to myself. However, this time i think it's the first time i try to figure out why i feel like this.... which is great because i think i may need time to adjust and improve myself to tackle with the changed environment... let's see how good i will deal with it. Apart from that, I have to sorry to my classmates first, If I can't speak very well but i will try my best. Today, Paul told us an interesting word which is "winning is understanfing urself better". The word may be able to be applied to my case.

At the afternoon, we hv a discussion about MBE learning environment conducted by Paul which there were not much topics (I aslo didn't raise any topics but i think i will in the future)but I think it's a good session to share our ideas and comments.... it's really dffer from the existing traditional learning style like lecturing. Actually, i used to think that it's quite an ideal to study like this... but here we gonna make it happen... how great it is.....

Actually before the class I and my groupmates had a group meeting to discuss about working style and our plan. I think we did it good... it's  systematic working.

After the class, i went to the library with Lila she is lovely actually... we find some materials in order to do the assignments then went back to our accomodation.

some ideas of leadership~after reading Kang's blog

After reading Kang's blog and some comments on it, I can definitely feel his uncomfortable of our debates in the afternoon.

First, I don't think it's some kind of confrontation. As we are in the same team, as we all the team members, we all have the right to present what we think. If we just follow what some member said, whether we agree or not, it must be a worse team. So, any comment we made, not just aim to any specific member, and it must be something we think good for the whole team and can lead a better outcome.

As other colleagues said, each person has his/her own understand of leadership. Even in the same country, different leaders of different company have their own style, how about people from different parts of the world? If all the leaders follow the same style, all the companies will be some kind of the same, how can they get their own advantages in competition?

Besides, what kind of leadership is better must depends on the situation of the team. As we all just know each other, as we not in the situation of the real leader and his follows, we cannot just give someone a power and let others absolutely follow him. If in one project, someone be the leader, and as you said, he decides almost everything and assigns each of his member to certain things he wants them to, without listening what his members' personal opinion on the project, it must not be a team work, and it just be a personal work done by a team. Even though he collects all the opinions, but the right of decision is on his hand, so he also can let the things go as he wish, it's also an individual work.

See what our situation is? We just have some projects related to the knowledge of CBE. Why I emphasize the word "knowledge"? It's not something related to the real world. It's just something previous people had done and we just have to learn to study and to have maybe our own comprehension. I really don't think such knowledge learning things will lead to some kinds of hard-decision making and we will debate till the mid-night. And I also do believe that more people making decision together will lead to a better outcome, especially in the logistic and structure parts of the project.

You prepared more for today's meeting. It's undoubtly. And I do believe all of us feel happy to work with you. But I want us to come to the memory of the start of our meeting. From the very beginning, you took yourself as a leader. I'm not saying there is any inappropriate. Each team need a leader and you organized us at the beginning. It's perfect! But if at the first start, we are not like relationship of seven team members, we more like one leader and six members, then once any of us had different opinions with you, you would think it as some kind of defiant and that incredible lead to your uncomfortable. Let's imagine another situation. If today we voted Mei as the leader of first project, and she expressed her opinion of leadership to all of us. Obviously it goes the opposite way as yours. Would you express or keep silent?? If you express, do you think yourself did something aim to her? Or you just think you want our team to be more powerful? Besides, if those who have different opinions with one project leader must be the bad partner and those who agree with him/her or don't express themselves must be the good partner. Yes, this is a good organization with clear rates, but it won't be a good team.

Maybe this blog is kind of tough, please don't mind. I really want to say that we are in the same team, whatever I and other members voice in our discussion, it comes from a good intention. We just want to find the most suitable style of team work to let us have the best result. We do hope to have a wonderful time together.

October 06, 2008

first team meeting

Today is the first day of CBE study. Paul gave us an introduction of CBE and then an old video of BBC called "Deming Circle" followed by some discussions. We got 8 key points of the video and also we have so many to learn from this famous person. But till now, I only know quite a little of him and his Deming theory, so I don't want to give much comment on it. After the study of the whole module, I will talk more.

After the course, we have a team discussion of our 6 team projects, talking about the leader, the secretay, ourselves, and as well what kind of things we should prepare before the next meeting. As we have 6 projects and 7 members, almost each of us can have a chance to be a leader. However, different from the power-leader in real society, most of us think that the leader of our team is more like an organizer. He/She has to organize the time, to organize each of us to choose a favorite part and to organize some of us to put them together and also organize us to vote for someone to give a presentation stand for the whole team. Maybe this kind of leader has less power, but it must be a good practice of finding others' advantages and making the best use of what you already have and get the best outcome, which, in my opinion, is also an essential part of being a leader.

We also knew each other more this afternoon. I am under a lot of pressure because all my team members are good at English. Three of them have been abroad for 6 to 12 years. Besides, Lila has an English-speaking mother so she take English maybe as the second mother language. The same situation to Gilbert, for he was grown in HongKong, where I think English is an official language. Toon just came to the UK for less than two months, the same with me, but she has three years' working experience in some famous multinational companies such as IBM, so she also does well in English. I  really have too much to be improved and undoubtly, with those guys, I can learn quite a lot.

Well, during the self-introduction part, Louis asked me why I was so good at maths. As Apollo said that most Chinese students do well in maths. Besides, I'm just quite sensitive to the numbers and such sort of maths things, and I had won the first prize of China's national mathematics competition in middle school. Each of us has our own advantages like you are so good at English writing, and I think maybe the maths and logistic things are my advantages. So don't be surprise if next time I work out things faster than you. We just know our self-value and make it used to our team, we will be a great union, right?

My very late blog… but good to begin.. Thank you Paul

Before I came to study here, i intended that i would write something like my diary everyday because i dont wanna forget every moment here but unfortunately since i arrived here i haven't got a chance to even think about it. So, i do need to thank to Paul my course leader to let this blog to be a part of our learning material...to be honest, it's very cool idea actually...

In fact, i lived here for almost 2 months, there have been manythings i have learnt. The most important thing is planning... let me think about it... actually, i still feel i'm always busy because i have to think about my plan all the time... may be i'm in my continuous process improvement... haha..... Anyway, there are manythings i'd like to write... may be i will gradually write it out to here... my space....