Archive for February 14th, 2011

Cirque in Cbus

One of the great things about OSU is the fact that it is located here in Columbus. As the capital of Ohio, it tends to be a major stop for most entertaining tours across the country. The other day a group of us MAcc students went and saw a personal favorite of these touring acts, Cirque du Soleil, and it was amazing. For anyone that has yet to see this astounding traveling show, Cirque du Soleil is basically a fancy circus. The main differences between this show and your typical “circus” are that Cirque du Soleil does not use animals and they tend to have a primary focus on acrobatic stunts rather than some of the other things you may see at a circus (you won’t see any motorcycles driving around in a big metal cage here). To be honest, I also find the clowns in this show to be more entertaining than your typical, “give children nightmares” kind of clowns from other circuses.

Dralion

The brand name of “Cirque du Soleil” encompasses numerous traveling shows around the world, so specifically we saw the show entitled “Dralion.” Basically the theme of the show focused on the four elements taking human form, so they had acts that embodied wind, water, earth, and fire. One of the favorite acts of the group was the “wind” act called the Aerial Pas de Deux, which is described by their website as:

a languorous aerial dance. A couple, intertwined, flies over the stage in a long band of blue cloth. Within the cloth, they perform various acrobatic figures that demand great feats of strength and flexibility.

The other amazing acts included some mind blowing juggling, jumping through hoops, and trampolining… And yes, I just made up the word “trampolining” as in, the art of doing crazy acrobatic stunts on a trampoline. If this show or any of the Cirque du Soleil shows ever come to your town, be sure to go – it’s well worth it!

Tyler


Power in Numbers

Whenever I tell friends outside of MLHR that the program has an emphasis on group work, the usual response is something to the effective of, “Ugggg I HATE group work.” or “I don’t know how you handle group work all the time. Isn’t that so hard to find time with your schedules?” Now, I must admit, I came into the program with a similar attitude when they told us we would be working in groups for most of our time here. However, I think I might have come to rather enjoy group work. Here are a few reasons why group work isn’t as bad as people think:

1. It’s a great opportunity to get to know people in the program. Last quarter, was the beginning of a new program with new people. Our group projects facilitated a way for us to get to know each other. As with every group project there are times when we get off topic, and it is really nice to actually have the opportunity to get to know the AMAZINGLY TALENTED people in our program.

2. Divide and conquer. I know sometimes solo projects can move a little quicker because you are not dealing with a group, but you still have to do all that work by yourself. I love being able to divide up the work for the project knowing that each person in our group will do an excellent job.

3. Meeting in different places and getting away from campus. Like many people, being in Fisher at night during the week and on many Sundays is not my idea of a good time after awhile. Don’t get me wrong, Gerlach is a beautiful, dare I say, high-tech building, but it gets old. Especially in the winter when all anyone wants to do is go outside in warm weather. This is why winter has been a great time to get out and meet at other places. Today, my group met at a Panera in Upper Arlington. New scenery and not as crowded as the one by campus. You can explore different parts of Columbus and get work done at the same time. How about that?

4. This may go along with divide and conquer, but less presenting time. It’s great having people stand up there with you when you are presenting your work. Unlike many other programs, you have to do the work by yourself and then stand up and present it on your own. Then, you have to talk for at least 20 minutes. Can you say SCARY? It give me so much more confidence when you have people with you as you present and you don’t have to speak for very long when there are 3-4 members that all need to do some of the talking. Literally, power in numbers.

Of course, there are some downsides to group work. It can be challenging finding time to meet with people, especially as more people get jobs during the school year (myself included), but it’s worth it. Now that many of us know each other’s schedules it is not that bad. One thing to do though, is be up front with your schedule at your first group meeting. This sets the tone if you will, so everyone is on the same page when it comes to meetings.

MLHR has made a believer out of me when it comes to group work. Go Team!


Learning from a LDP session

“I like helping people…”

That is my mission. That is what I am passionate about. That is the reason why I want to become consultant – to help many more people with my expertise. I already know that fact for a long time. The thing I really do not know until today is how to express that out comfortably.

You may question what happened to me today. Yeah, today I met Ruth, an expert in communication, PR who was invited to help MBA students with “Telling your story” session. It was an event in the Leadership Development Program for MBA students at Fisher. At first, I did not much like the idea of spending 2 hours of my non-class Friday for a “mandatory” session. In my mind, “mandatory” rule is associated with something not interesting. I am now thankful for this “mandatory” rule because I met Ruth, talked with Ruth and have her advice for my “story”.

I grew up in a culture that appreciates humility, not encouraging talking about personal achievements. That is why I was struggling with talking about myself comfortably. I do not know how to show that I am a capable person without listing my recognition and rewards. It is easier for me to do that in my CV or my cover letter, but I was scared of the idea about a direct interview with my prospective employers. Fortunately (or unfortunately), I have not had any interviews yet so I have not yet ruined my career because of that issue.

What did I learn from her? Well, I learned to express my interest, telling my story without being concerned too much about showcasing my achievements. I learned to focus on what I am  passionate about most: helping people get over issues in organization, in human resources management so that they can focus on delivering their business results. I have many stories surrounding that to tell. And I am more than happy to tell these stories rather than speaking about my recognition. I like to be humble (consistent with my culture) yet I want to gain credibility for my capabilities.

I used to share my story only to my close friends, who I trusted would not think of me as a show-off person. I am now feeling more comfortable telling everyone about my passion. I like helping people. I can help with problems in statistics, finance or accounting classes. I can help on the admission process to Fisher MBA program, in housing, in relocation and life in Columbus. I can help with issues about office machines (printer, photocopier, LCD) and features of Word, Excel, PPT, Movie Maker. I can provide perspective and advice on human resources processes, organizational strategy. Come to me with your questions. I like finding solutions for you!

I love Leadership Development Program! :)


The Whimsy of Chinese p. I

After spending the weekend with my family for the Chinese New Year, I got to thinking about some of the little quirks of the Chinese language.  And being that I have at least one friend enrolled in the Chinese individual study course for next quarter, I thought I’d share some things you may or may not have known about me, the Chinese culture and the Chinese language.

My family is Taiwanese.  It’s a tiny little island east of China.  You will sometimes see it written as Taiwan, R.O.C. (Republic of China) or just Taiwan.  It depends on who is writing it.  Taiwan declared its independence from China in 1949 when the Nationalists fled mainland China after losing to the Communist Party.  China, however, does not recognize said independence.  It’s like if the U.S. and Britain never had the Revolutionary War.  China still maintains that Taiwan is a part of China, and has even blocked Taiwan from having representation in the United Nations.

Taiwan was once settled by the Portuguese, hence its former name of Formosa.  As was Japan, which lead to the very popular Japanese dish of tempura or deep-fried, battered vegetables and meat.

The region of China where the Taiwanese first came from was once settled by Arabs and Jews, and if you go back far enough in my family tree, you can actually find a Jewish and Arab ancestor.  Taiwan also has its own group of indigenous, aboriginal peoples.  The chanting track in the background of Enigma’s popular song, “Return To Innocence” was actually performed by the aboriginal peoples of Taiwan.

The Chinese language has one written form which can be written in either the traditional form or the now more popular simplified format.  Mainland China uses the simplified format more often now, while Taiwan maintains use of the traditional format.  It is said that you need to know approximately 3500 individual Chinese characters to read the newspaper.

The Chinese language is iconographic, meaning that each character and its meaning was originally depicted graphically.  For instance, the character “guo” or country, originally was drawn to depict a wall around the region, a mouth to depict the people of the region, and a spear to defend them.  The character for “person” looks like a person walking.

Although I can speak fluently, I never had a formal education aside from my Chinese school classes I attended on Sundays until the age of 10.  Because of this, my vocabulary is somewhat limited and my sisters and I employ “Chinglish,” a mixture of Chinese and English where English words are substituted for those we don’t know in Mandarin.  Listen in on one of my phone conversations sometimes.  It is impressive, confusing and hilarious at the same time.

Also because of my lack of education in Chinese, I am also illiterate.  I can recognize the characters in my name and a handful of other characters and of course numbers.  A game I like to play when I’m in Taiwan is to see how many signs I can read in their entirety.  My high score so far is: 1

Another game I like to play is reading the back of fortune cookies when they teach you words.  I often can’t figure out the word by reading the pinyin, and can only do so when I like at the English translation.  Then it makes sense.  My boyfriend will read the pinyin on his fortune cookie aloud to me and I will try to figure out what he’s saying.  Our little games are another instance where the Chinese language is impressive, confusing and hilarious at the same time.

Even though the Chinese language is written one way, it is spoken aloud and read differently depending on what dialect you are speaking.  Mandarin Chinese is called “guo yu” or the language of the country, or “pu tong hua”, the ordinary language.  Mandarin spoken in Beijing differs from Mandarin spoken in other parts of the country.  Some of the most common dialects of Chinese are Shanghainese, Taiwanese and Cantonese.

To be continued!  More to come!



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