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December 13, 2011

"I"or "the author" why?


Reading articles from journals is a part of doing a PMA (Post module assignment). For those who don’t know what that is, a PMA is a written piece of work we have to do each time we finish a module. That piece of work will count for 70% of the module mark.

A PMA can have several different kinds of structures. Each individual student has their own way of attacking a question, which is just perfect. Different people think different and thereby contribute to the study environment in different ways as well. There are no rules as such for how to structure a PMA, but only guidelines as I see it. Yes, we have to use different references for supporting our ideas but there are different ways of doing so as well. All these “rules” make sense.

What I don’t understand is the use of third person when writing a scientific article. Why is this the case?

I mean, its not an irritating thing for me or anything. If we have to that no harm, I just can’t see the reason. Why is it that writing “I believe” is worse than writing “ the author believes”?

There is a TV show called Merlin (If you haven’t seen it- See it) which takes place in the past where we had knights and kings. At that time it was not good to address the king or prince like addressing a “normal” person. People would get arrested doing so. Luckily that has changed in the world today. But has it?

Is the reason for this “third person” way of writing an old survival from that time?

The author can’t see the reason so please help me!

December 02, 2011

Challenge Accepted!!!


Deadline for next PMA is 16th February, but that does not mean I should not finish it before Christmas. Actually according to my time management I was supposed to be finished with it today. Or at least have been using the feed forward. Why have I then only written 1000 words?

I know the time is tight and every hour counts this year. That should keep me motivated for keeping the time management- like the burning platform theory. I know all this why have I not kept my time management then?

One thing is to be motivated from having a deadline and thereby create the burning platform. Another way I get motivated by is to not know how to do things. Like getting or finding a problem which I can’t figure out from the beginning. Don’t know if there is a theory about this but I call it being on deep water when learning how to swim. The challenge in not knowing what you are doing and where I am getting thrills me. Maybe that’s what missing in a PMA? I am not saying that I don’t learn anything when writing a PMA and don’t find anything new either- because I do. But just because I know a little bit about the topic demotivates me a bit.

I think this is the same thing when doing a project in a company. Having routines makes you think in the same pattern. These routines are also causing the jumping to solutions problem, because you think you know the root cause all ready. The team might also get demotivated by doing the analysis process if they can’t see the point of it. It then might create bad solution for the company, just as it might create a bad PMA for me.

Don’t know the solution to this yet but I can see the challenge. In other words, as a good friend of mine would say, “challenge accepted”.

November 15, 2011

So what should it be?


Another day spend at the library on the second PMA- The FACS PMA.

Doing my time at the library I sometime need to do something else, like reading a e-newspaper or something. Some might say that is procrastinating but I think its more about restarting your brain. Well doing one of my restarts I read an article about the different mindset of an Engineer and economist. The article was about the way they calculated business efficiency. Economist calculated it by looking at the export of the company and the engineer calculated it by output per employee- really roughly described.

This is exactly what I am facing right now doing this FACS PMA. The CBE PMA had a more human view point attached to it, where the FACS is all about the numbers and how they are affected. I really have a leg in both camps ( that might be a Danish phrase) when doing these two PMAs but is that not what the world is all about today. Bringing things together to create something new.

Anyways doing a PMA is not important but urgent. Doing you project is important but not urgent-yet. Why havent I found a project yet if its so important? I have only been focusing on these PMA and only roughly thought about the project in my head. The only thing I do know about my project is that is has to be something new. Something where you take one more "camp" into the jungle-Like Engineer and economy.

So what should that be?

November 14, 2011

Continuous improvement and PMA– Will I ever finish?


Just started my second PMA but have not submitted my first one yet. Don't know why I don't submit it. I only have to read it through once which takes like 1 hour but still I end up using more. We are supposed to only use 40 hours on it and I think I used like 50 maybe- but again its the first one.

Before starting the PMA I really planned to keep my time(40 hours) so my time management would be efficient- it started great. I ended up by reading a bit more articles, rephrasing sentences, restructure the report and read a bit more again without actually moving towards the goal line.

The PMA was about continuous improvement, in other words, nothing is good enough- you can always do better. I think that was what hit me during this first PMA. Continuous improvement became a part of my PMA and I ended up using more time on it.

Was it worth it? Don't know.

Don't know how I can come around this issue, but I will try to keep an even more tight time management for this FACS PMA. I think a more tight schedule will decrease this "continuous improvement" effect and make me realise that time is not something to control but only use.

Funny my PMA is about creating a continuous improvement culture and here I am creating a plan how to decrease it.

November 08, 2011

What will I become?


The future depends on us, the new generation. We are the ones who should develop new systems and new ideas to do business in the future. Our ancestors did it, now its our turn to shape the future? Who would be the new Bill Gates, the new Steve Job, the new Demming etc.? Well only the future us will know.

Here I am writing about continuous improvement and states how important it is for companies to be able to adopt changes. I do this by finding articles and reading in books all written by our ancestors. We rely on these written theories to be able to kick start our own ideas and thoughts. Those new ideas are therefore in a way based on the thoughts all ready written. How much can we actually build on those ideas?

We are taught that we should not always believe in the things being written. When we don´t believe in what is being written we have to find support from other articles and books. This creates a stable way of securing that knowledge is well documented and I fully understand why that is good. But if one tries to step away from this path, it cannot be supported because it's totally new. It could be a bad change or it could be the new future. Are we able to use these new changes then in our work?

Who knew that facebook would be a hit when being presented? Who knew that Demming's management view would have such an impact on the world we see today?

They did not adopt to the changes in the environment, they changed the environment.

So what should I do? Should I change the environment and let other people take care of adopting to that? Or should I relay on other people to create the change and then be the guy who adopt to it?

I don't know who I want to become and don't know if I ever will.

November 03, 2011

Do PMA fit the MBE learning environment?


Writing my PMA and learning, that should be the start to a good blog in the PMA period. But do I actually learn anything when writing my PMA- yes of course I do. Is it fun learning?- No I don´t think so.

Do I learn more doing my PMA because of MBE?- No don´t think so.

PMA are a part of all programs and basically works in the same way as in MBE. I know we have the possibility to use feed forward which of course is a good thing. Is feed forward then providing us MBE students an extra advantage for learning more doing our PMA?- Maybe, don´t know, but it is a good thing.

At MBE we learn to work as a learning organisation which is about leading with no fear for mistakes. Is that fun learning- Yes I think so. I believe that this is not the case for the other programs( not saying they don´t have fun).

So we, MBE, should share our experiences, learn from them and improve our own capabilities. If our capabilities is measured in our marks the different learning environment only counts for 30-20% of our total capability(mark). The rest is based on how good we are in our PMA, which is the same for the other programs.

Sharing PMA´s and learn from each other in that perspective might be treated as plagiarism, but is that not what a learning organisation is all about?

Should we be afraid of talking to our classmates about our PMA´s because of plagiarism? if that´s the case is plagiarism then a method for leading by fear?

Do PMA fit this MBE learning environment or is it an "old" system we are forced to be in?

November 01, 2011

Hello November


So two modules is over and two PMA´s needs to be made before November ends. Additional I also have to attend one more module in November which of course also needs one of those PMA. Above that I also have to grow a beard due to something called Movember. In know, me growing a beard is like impossible. November seems hard with all those PMA´s and modules, but that is nothing compared to me growing a beard. At least I can make a plan for how to complete the PMA´s and modules but I cannot plan to suddenly grow a beard.

Having started the first PMA ( the CBE) I learned how easy it is to start reading about a different topic and how hard it is to keep your plan. I mean all those reference which needs to support your ideas and answers are also the ones stealing your time. When I started my PMA I thought that I knew what my topic was about but after some rumble in the knowledge jungle it changed. Suddenly I was in doubt of something really basic which I learned from my BSc. That doubt might have taken me away from my question. I guess thats what feed forward is for?

Well one thing I know, is that I can only use the 40 hours set to be the normal timeframe for a MBE PMA. If I use more I might get less time for the other PMA but also less time for my project which is still unknown.

That was just another thing I also has to do in November- get clear on what kind of project I want!

So I will just say welcome to November hope you brought time with you :)

October 23, 2011

PMA customer– Myself or the tutor?

Hi all

So we finished the first module at MBE and should therefore know what business excellence is all about. Also we should have learned this by having fun, as little Johnny at the playground. In other words, we learn without knowing it because we have fun. When Paul said this the first day, I was like “yeah like studying is the same fun as playing- too good to be true”. But now after we finished, I take those words back. I did learn without knowing it and also I thought most of it was fun. So let’s see, do I know what business excellence is and how to create it?

I think this question will be answered when doing my PMA.

One thing though, who is my customer when doing a PMA? If I want a high mark I have to make a PMA according to the marking system. I am the one getting the high mark which could be referred to as being money. The one paying is therefore the customer which is Paul. Is the course tutor then my customer?

Or is it me, because I am the one learning doing the process?

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