Category

7 Things

Category

By Aditi Maheshwari

Covid-19 has created uncertain scenarios that we as individuals and businesses are forced to change our practices to navigate this challenging period. The obvious questions coming up are – how do we enable business continuity during these times of turmoil. How will the future of travel be like, how do we increase engagement in virtual meetings, how do we creatively solve problems, how do we handle fear and stress due to COVID anxiety? How do we incorporate more work from home scenarios, how do we improve work efficiency to incorporate new time tables, the power of communication, the risk-bearing capacity in turbulent times, management crisis, the risks and rewards of investing in times of uncertainties, how do we operate in a safe and inclusive environment, etc. Instability is changing the consumer’s needs and purchasing patterns. To remain relevant and keep your business moving in this present time, it’s important to redesign and remodel so that you don’t remain behind while others are forging ahead. In this article, Amazons Watch outlines seven re-adjustment to make in this age and time.

Michelle Fox

In recent times, women owned businesses forms the lifeblood of most of the big cities in the world, however, following the impact of the coronavirus outbreak, some of these businesses are shutting down while for some the method of doing business has changed drastically. 

While the coronavirus seem to pose a huge threat to small and women owned businesses, most business expert are encouraging entrepreneurs to look at the brighter side.

 “Right now we are being forced to change the way we work, but that doesn’t mean businesses have to suffer. Productivity can be just as high and businesses can thrive. Working remotely will save many businesses during this time,” says Silvina Moschini, co-founder of TransparentBusiness, digital innovation expert, international speaker, and entrepreneur.

The coronavirus outbreak has affected everything in life including businesses run by women. In the midst of the lockdown, the fate of most women entrepreneurs is uncertain. 

“This has been the most devastating time for small businesses that I’ve seen,” said Karen Mills, a senior fellow at Harvard Business School and former administrator of the Small Business Administration under President Barack Obama.

“It directly impacts the cash available to small businesses,” she added, noting that they have, on average, only 27 days of a cash buffer.

In order to survive and avoid bankruptcy, here are seven things women entrepreneurs can do.

  1. Take advantage of government programs

Businesses with fewer than 500 employees can apply for a loan through the Paycheck Protection Program, which was instituted in the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act.

Karas has reached out to his bank to start the loan application process. He hopes it will “keep us going a little bit longer.”

The PPP already has approved 860,000 applications for $210 billion of loans. Borrowers can apply for forgiveness for any funds used for payroll costs, mortgage, interest, rent and utilities over an eight-week period.

“Everybody should be doing this,” said Bob Prosen, CEO of The Prosen Center for Business Advancement.

If you don’t have luck at one bank, try another, he suggested.

“Some banks won’t accept it if you aren’t already a business banking customer, but some will,” he said. “If they tell you no, shop around.”

Another option is applying for an Economic Injury Disaster Loan through the SBA. The agency has a list of relief programs on their website. 

Also, check with your state and town to see what loans and grants are offered locally.  

  1. Renegotiate contracts

Take a look at your accounts payable. Gather all your vendor contracts, prioritize them, and then start negotiating things like reduced payments or extended terms, Prosen suggested.

While some may not agree, some will.

“Your suppliers certainly don’t want you to go out of business,” he said.

You can also work with your landlord to try to forgo rent payments for a set amount of time.

  1. Collect any outstanding cash

On the flip side, reach out to those who owe you money and collect. If you were holding an invoice until work was finished, don’t; instead, bill for the portion that was completed.

You can also ask customers for prepayment of a future activity, said Mills of Harvard Business School.

“The whole strategy is to stay liquid, so you could offer a discount on next year’s activity if people pay up front,” she suggested.

  1. Reduce staff costs

As painful as it is, you have to reduce your staff as much as possible, either through layoffs or furloughs, Prosen said.

Just make sure you handle it with care.

That’s something Karas had to do. He laid off one part-time bartender and a full-time bar back. 

For those who remain in your employ, make across-the-board “significant” pay cuts, Prosen added.

  1. Increase productivity

Do as much work as is viable with the least amount of people.

Right now you’ll be better off working longer hours with a smaller group than less hours with a larger group, Prosen suggested.

You can also increase efficiency by working online.

Prior to the pandemic, many companies hadn’t made the move because they didn’t necessarily trust it, Prosen noted. In the traditional model, people can talk to each other in the office and know what people are doing. Now businesses have been forced to move to online platforms, but it has helped keep productivity high. 

  1. Signature required

Make sure that you modify all of your signature approvals, no matter the size, so that only the owner can approve any spending, Prosen said.

This way, nothing will be spent that you don’t know about.

  1. Look past the pandemic

During this time, remember to treat your customers well so that they stick around once things get better.

“For those current customers, you are going to provide exceptional service. More than you have ever provided before,” Prosen said.

Communicate the status of your business and offer helpful hints. You can also ask those consumers for referrals.

Karas has embraced this idea by providing a free 2-oz bottle of hand sanitizer along with the purchase of spirits from the distiller. The business has also taken to social media to get the word out that they are still open and selling their products for curbside pickup.

The bottom line

The good news is that at some point, business will resume, Mills said. It’s just unknown when that will happen.

“The critical thing is to make sure that you can reduce expenses, reduce the cash outflows, work with all your suppliers and creditors, and see if you can maintain a solvent business, because if we don’t have our small businesses, our economy will be much harder to restart,” she said.

There are many reasons to consider taking a tour in Africa this holiday. Reasons range from her rich resources, to her beauty and vast lands, her culture and beautiful people, to the food and animals. Africa also has the beauty for movie spots and photo shoots for the gram. 

Below are listed Africa’s wonder monuments for your sight-seeing this holiday.

1. African Renaissance Monument, Senegal (161 feet)

 

 

Located on top of one of the twin hills known as Collines des Mamelles right outside Dakar, Senegal is the tallest statue in Africa. The statue designed by Senegalese architect Pierre Goudiaby after an idea presented by president Abdoulaye Wade and was built by Mansudae Overseas Projects, a company from North Korea. 

2. The Great Sphinx of Giza, Egypt (66 feet)

 

 

The Great Sphinx of Giza is the second tallest statue in Africa; the statue is an immense stone sculpture of a creature with the body of a lion and the head of a human. It still remains the largest structure created from a single piece of stone. The greatest monumental sculpture in the ancient world, it is carved out of a single ridge of limestone 240 feet (73 meters) long and 66 feet (20 meters) high.

3. Colossi of Memnon, Egypt (60 feet)

The Colossi of Memnon are two massive stone statues of the Pharaoh Amenhotep III, who reigned in Egypt during Dynasty XVIII (18th Dynasty). Each statue stands about 18 meters high (making them the third tallest statue in Africa) and resemble Amenhotep III himself. They are located on the West Bank, directly across the Nile from Thebes.

4. Moremi statue of liberty, Nigeria (42 feet)

Standing at 42-feet, in Ile-Ife, Nigeria is the tallest statue in Nigeria and fourth tallest statue in Africa. The statue was indigenously constructed by a team of about 200 Nigerian youths with materials sourced locally from the 774 local government areas in Nigeria.

5. Ramesses II statue, Egypt (36 feet)

The black granite statue depicts the third pharaoh of the Nineteenth Dynasty of Egypt, Ramesses II. Damaged during an earthquake in the fourth century, the statue was fully restored this year for the first time since its 1958–60 discoveries by an archaeological team led by Mohamed Abdel-Qader when it was found in 58 pieces.

6. Nelson Mandela statue, South Africa (29 feet)

The statue of Mandela at the Union Buildings, government headquarters, Pretoria is the tallest statue of him yet. The statue is made out of bronze, weighs 3.5 tons. The statue was created by South African sculptors Andre Prinsloo and Ruhan Janse van Vuuren and was unveiled on 16 December 2013 -the Day of Reconciliation- at the Union Buildings.

7. “Jesus de Greatest”, Nigeria (28 feet)

Standing at 28 feet, “Jesus de Greatest” statue is the tallest statue of Jesus Christ in Africa. It is located in St. Aloysius Catholic Church in the Abajah local government area of Imo state, Nigeria. The magnificent sculpture was carved in white marble, was commissioned in 2014 and was completed in 2016 by a Chinese company.

Vivy K

Extracts from 

https://listwand.com/top-7-tallest-statues-in-africa/

When examining the life of the modern day woman in the corporate world, it is highly pertinent to understand that almost all women who have successfully navigated to the top in the ladder of leadership have had to surmount the raging gender bias setting against women, which is usually associated with the current corporate setting in the world. Advancement in the place of work has never been an easy task for the 21st century woman, especially those who are zealous about changing the tide of things and those passionate about challenging the current domineering patriarchal system in the world.  

Records still show that women are underrepresented in corporate leadership positions. They are rather most times saddled with back office responsibilities while their male counter parts, take limitless frontline assignments and occupy vital leadership positions in big organization.  In this article of 7 things, we will examine 7 top challenges encountered by women in the corporate world.

7 challenges Encountered by Women in the corporate world

  1. The Gender Biased Pay Scheme: Despite the innovation of “equal pay day’ in some countries, women are still faced with real marginalization when it comes to salary payments in most establishments, especially when their earnings are compared with that of their male counterparts. There is an unconscious bias that exist in payment in the corporate world which intentionally attempts to put under the payments of the female gender in organizations. In order to create an environment which will enable an order for women to achieve full parity with men at work, we must eliminate the unconscious bias that still plays a significant role in the gender differences in pay. In one often-repeated methodology for studying gender differences in pay, participants are given a resume to review.  Half of the participants have a resume with a woman’s name and half have one with a man’s name at the top. Otherwise the resumes are identical. Participants are then asked how much they believe the owner of the resume should be paid. Even though the resumes are identical, participants consistently suggest higher salaries for the male candidate, and this poses a huge challenge to the women in the co-operate world.
  2.  Childbearing Discrimination: This is one of the most well-known hurdles to be crossed by a woman who desires to get to the peak of her career in the corporate world. Single women who are progressing in their career are often frightened about what the effects of “being put in a family way” might do to their career. Many women are afraid of starting a family knowing that their career will most likely be affected since being a working woman can become extremely difficult when it comes to having a baby.  It has been reported that some female workers return to work, after a supposed maternity leave only to realize that their job duties have changed or that they can no longer progress within their role.  
  3. The Struggle for a perfect Work-Life Balance:  Unlike the male population, the need for commendable advancements in the corporate world does not totally exonerate the woman from her responsibilities as a wife and mother. In a recent survey with some women with corporate jobs, 44 percent of them reported their work-life balance as the toughest challenge in the workplace. In another survey, 43% of employee said that flexible working hours would help them with stress. The desire for a perfect work-life balance has remained one of the major challenges faced by women in the corporate world. Some scholars attribute a flexible working hours as a major solution to this challenge. 
  4. Physique and Appearance Criticism:  Often times the physical appearance of women in the corporate world is judged more than that of her male counterparts.  In different settings it has been observed that a woman is perceived to be unserious with her job if she does not look polished enough; maybe when she is not wearing heels or make up. On the other hand, if a woman dresses her best and pays careful attention to the details of her appearance, others can assume she’s trying too hard. Now the question on the mind of this great career woman is “what could be the perfect medium?”
  5. Lack of Access to hot Jobs: Despite the admirable desire of most successful carrier women to become top leaders and ultimately successful role models in their field, they are still not provided with the required visibility and international experience that give them access to well-paying and better exposed jobs which seems to be the ‘hot job’ at this time.
  6. The issue of non-inclusiveness in Most Work Places:  it is rampant to feel the air of women being ignored in most corporate settings.  When women in any organization feel excluded, it could result to a lowered job satisfaction, reduced work effort, diminished employee voice, and greater intention to leave. 
  7. The absence of Career Motivators. Career motivators are people who have succeeded in a particular career and now serve as role-models to those currently treading that same path. There are very few powerful examples of female role models in the corporate world and this stands as a challenge to most women since they have little or no motivation to succeed in their chosen career path.

A balanced economy is key for promoting growth and development in any nation and for a nation to have a balanced economy, then gender (whether male or female) should never stand as a barrier to accessing resources in any nation.

Women in technology are often faced with stiff competition and gender inequality. However, the sector can boast of notable and inspiring women who sit as outstanding amazons in the tech hall of fame with glaring achievements to show for their hard-work.

Although women may not dominate the industry as much as their male counterparts, but if you pause for a while to observe their various inputs from different regions and brands to the overarching tech industry you will find outstanding results which symbolizes the truth about women’s push to take the lead and pave the way for the younger generation. Though female representation in technology sector might be few when compared to their male counterpart, their contributions are not little or less valuable.

Until the time comes when the industry will begin to offer equal opportunity and representation to women we will not stop commending the women who have forged ahead to become outstanding in this very competitive sector.

This week’s article on ‘’ 7 things ‘’ portray 7 women who are inspirational role models and are taking technology to a different level from different corners of the globe.

1.  Sheryl Kara Sandberg: is an American tech woman born on the 28th of August 1969. She currently serves as the chief operating officer (COO) of Facebook since 2008. Sheryl is the founder of Leanin.org. Before joining Facebook she served as vice president of global online sales and operations at Google, and was involved in launching Google’s philanthropic arm Google.org. Before Google, Sandberg served as chief of staff for United States Secretary of the Treasury Lawrence Summers. Under her leadership as Chief Operating Officer at Facebook, she led the social media company from a $56 million loss to $22.1 billion in profits in 2018. In June 2012, she was elected to Facebook’s board of directors by the existing board members, becoming the first woman to serve on its board. Her tireless contribution to the tech industry has earned her a lot of recognition including being the sixth “Most Powerful Women in Business” by Fortune Magazine.

 2. Susan Diane Wojcicki: is a Polish-American woman in tech, born July 5, 1968. She currently serves as the CEO of YouTube since February 2014. Wojcicki studied at Harvard University and graduated with honors in history and literature in 1990. She also received her Master’s of Science in economics from the University of California, Santa Cruz in 1993 and a Master of Business Administration from the UCLA Anderson School of Management in 1998. She started out in business selling “spice ropes” door-to-door at age 11. Wojcicki was a founding member of Google, and became Google’s first marketing manager in 1999. She was in charge of Google’s original video service, and after observing the success of YouTube, proposed the acquisition of YouTube by Google in 2006. Before joining Google, she worked in marketing at Intel Corporation in Santa Clara, California, and Bain & Company and R.B. Webber & Company as a management consultant. Under Wojcicki’s leadership as CEO of YouTube, the company reached 2 billion logged-in users a month and users were watching one billion hours a day. YouTube was rebranded in a way that it birth localized versions in 100 countries around the world across 80 languages. Most importantly, Wojcicki’s leadership increased YouTube’s employment of female staff from 24 percent to nearly 30 percent. Wojcicki is the 6th most powerful woman in the world according to Forbes list of the World’s 100 Most Powerful Women.

3. Cher Wang: is a Taiwanese tech woman born, 15 September 1958, into the family of late Wang Yung Ching, Founder of Formosa Plastics and Business tycoon. She is the co-founder and chairperson of HTC Corporation and integrated chipset maker VIA Technologies since 2007. Cher studied at The College Preparatory School in Oakland, California, and in 1981 went on to receive her bachelor’s degree in economics from the University of California, Berkeley. Cher is considered as one of the most powerful and successful women in technology. As of 2014, she was listed as the 54th most powerful woman in the world by Forbes. Before co-founding HTC in 1997, she established a number of successful IT-related businesses, including founding VIA Technologies, Inc. in 1987. She is currently Chairwoman of both companies, and holds leadership roles in numerous other enterprises and organizations. On the account of her giant strides as an innovative tech woman she was honored on Forbes World’s Billionaires list from 2010 to 2012, amongst others.

4. Sun Yafang: is an inspiring tech woman from China who was the former Chairwoman of Huawei (served from 1999 to 2018). She studied at the University of Electronic Science and Technology of China(UESTC), and graduated with a bachelor’s degree in 1982. She went on to work as a technician at Xin Fei TV Manufactory and later became an engineer at the Beijing Research Institution of Communication Technology in 1985. She joined Huawei in 1989 and was promoted to the position of the chairwoman of the corporation in 1999. According to a 2011 report by the CIA, Sun also worked for the Ministry of State Security of the People’s Republic of China and she was linked to the Chinese military. She stepped down as Chairwoman of Huawei in March 2018, after so many achievements. Sun was the 38th most powerful woman in the world by Forbes in 2016.

5. Dorcas Muthoni: the founder of Openworld Ltd, a specialist computer software company in Kenya that deals in the delivery of some of the most widely used Web and Cloud applications in Africa, including ARIS, an African Union reporting application used by all 54 member states. Dorcas is an alumni of the University of Nairobi, where she studied Computer Science. She has been trained in wireless networks, radio-communications and strategic technology planning, among other subjects. Dorcas established Openworld when she was 24 years old, following her passion to use technology as tool to positively change the African society. Her method for this transformation is through the ordinary African people, governments and enterprises. Dorcas also serves as the co-founder of the regional organization LinuxChix Africa, a Director at Ushahidi and a Member of the council of the Free Software and Open Source Foundation for Africa – FOSSFA. Based on her conscious effort towards developing technology in Africa she has been honored on various platforms including being inducted by the Internet Society into the Internet Hall of Fame, in 2012.

6. Juliana Rotich: is a woman in tech from Kenya who has worked in IT industry for over a decade. She studied in the University of Missouri, and has a degree in information technology. Juliana is the Co-founder of BRCK Inc., a hardware company based in Kenya that makes BRCK and other devices.  Juliana is also the Co-founder of Ushahidi Inc, a non-profit tech company, born in Africa, which specializes in developing free and open source software for changing how information flows in the world. She is also a trustee of The iHub in Kenya and Bankinter Foundation for Entrepreneurship and Innovation in Spain. She was named Schwab Foundation Social Entrepreneur of the Year in Africa by the World Economic Forum, in 2011. 

7. Kathryn Parsons: is a British tech entrepreneur, the co-founder and co-CEO of Decoded. Decoded is a London-based tech startup which aims to increase digital literacy. The company currently serves as one of the leading global brands offering technology masterclasses in 85 cities across the world reaching 250,000 people face-to-face, as well as hundreds of thousands more online. Parsons has been recognized following her exception input in the tech industry and has received various awards such as the Veuve Clicquot New Generation Award which she received in 2013, the Women of the Future award in Technology and the UK Start-Up Entrepreneur of the Year and Digital Business of the Year, amongst others.

By Bridget Bentz Sizer

The ultimate Do-As-I-say-and-Not-As-I-do which has been a form of parenting over the years is beginning to fade away, this is because the twenty-first century child wants to see you do before they make a move. However, instead of trying to understand their kids,most parents respond in an authoritarian way, thus making themselves an opponent to their children. When this happens, parents have just entered into a disciplinary arms race in which there are no winners, only hurt feelings, sore throats and soaring blood pressure. Parenting doesn’t have to be a battle, kids are propelled to learn better and easier with an example, this suggest that you as the parent should act first and they will learn to do-as-you-do.

Discipline has always been a consistent issue faced by most mothers as they try to ensure they do not fail in their obligation to raise well-mannered children. Although, there are no cast in stone methods on how to discipline a child but there are definitely practices that help instill positive discipline in children; thereby creating avenues through which children remain true to who they are as well as help them experience the positive outcome and lessons of discipline.

Parenting is not centered on the child alone but also the parent, therefore parents should pay attention to themselves as they also seek to raise their children in a good way. Proponents of positive discipline teach that kids can and will behave better without threats, bribes, yelling and physicality.

Here are seven tips by Bridget Bentz Sizer that will set you on the path to better behavior and a stronger, more peaceful connection with your child.

1. Understand the meaning behind the behavior: Naomi Aldort, the author of “Raising Our Children, Raising Ourselves,” says that children want to behave well; if they seem to miss the mark, it’s not without a valid reason. “The most important thing is to realize that whatever a child does, we may label as bad, but really the child is doing the best he can. It’s our job as parents to find out why he is doing it,” says Aldort. “Once we know the valid root of the behavior, we can easily remove the cause or heal the emotions, and the child won’t be driven to behave in that way anymore.”

So ask yourself: is your child hitting her sibling in a desperate bid for your attention? Maybe you stayed on the phone too long or ignored her as you rushed to get dinner on the table. If so, what correction can you make to your own behavior that will satisfy your child’s need? “A lot of what we expect of children is unreasonable,” says Aldort.

2. Focus on controlling yourself, not your child: It’s hard to keep cool in the heat of the moment, but Dr. Katharine C. Kersey, the author of “The 101s: A Guide to Positive Discipline,” says that parents need to model the types of behavior they want their children to emulate. Remember, yelling begets yelling, hitting begets hitting. “We should not do anything in front of our children that we don’t want them to do,” she advises. In the case of an extreme behavioral flare-up, this may mean counting to 10, taking a deep breath or simply walking away until you’ve had time to collect yourself.

Jim Fay, the founder of the organization Love and Logic, agrees. “Anger and frustration feed misbehavior,” he says. Fay offers an unusual tactic for keeping your voice in check: instead of yelling that your child is doing something wrong, try singing it. Fay teaches parents what he calls the “Uh Oh” song. If a child throws a toy after he’s been asked to stop, you might sing, “Uh Oh, that’s sad you threw your truck again. I think it’s time the truck went away.”

3. Be consistent with your expectations. Aldort says that parents often overlook a certain behavior in the hope that it will pass. “But guess what?” she says. “It doesn’t pass.” If your child bites another child, for instance, you should hold her arm and tell her that the behavior is not acceptable. If she continues, then it is time to remove her from the situation.

Sometimes a child might try to test the limits by arguing with the rules. When this happens, Fay suggests neutralizing negotiations by repeating one simple mantra as often as necessary: “I love you too much to argue.”

4. Give attention to the behavior you like, not the behavior you don’t. Children often act up because they want your attention, so sometimes it pays to ignore those actions you don’t want to see more of. Kersey calls this the “Rain on the grass, not on the weeds” principle. Tantrums and whining? Play deaf or walk away, and your child will quickly learn that there’s a better way to communicate.

5. Redirect, redirect, redirect. Kids who hear “No” or “Don’t” all the time tend to tune those directives out. So instead of telling your child what not to do, Kersey recommends instead offering a positive behavior to replace the misbehavior. For instance, a child acting up at the grocery store could be enlisted to help pick out oranges or rearrange the items in a grocery cart, or a kid running around a swimming pool might be challenged to walk “as if on marshmallows.”

6. Exploit the “energy drain.” Any parent who has been in the trenches knows how tiring it is when a child acts up, but did you know that that fatigue can be used to your advantage? Fay calls this the “energy drain” principle. For instance, you might defuse a sibling confrontation by saying, “Wow, you need to take that fight with your brother somewhere else, because listening to that could cause me a big energy drain, and I don’t think I’ll have the energy to take you to the park after dinner.”

7. Don’t bribe. It may be tempting to offer your child a cookie for behaving well during an outing, but Fay warns against it. Offering them a reward sends the wrong message; what kids hear is “You don’t want to be very good and you have to be paid off,” says Fay.”

Instead, Fay says, “the best reward for a kid is time with the parents. “Kersey agrees that quality time is key to a happy, well-behaved child. She recommends that each parent spend at least 15 minutes one-on-one connecting with a child every day. “Do something your child wants to do [during that time],” says Kersey. “Whisper in their ears how wonderful they are and how much you love them. … It’s the best investment you can make in your child.”

Source: http://www.pbs.org/parents/talkingwithkids/positive_discipline_tips.html