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Happy Labor Day America

Published September 1, 2014 by Mayrbear's Lair

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The following information was provided from United States Department of Labor.

What Labor Day Means

Labor Day, the first Monday in September, is a creation of the labor movement and is dedicated to the social and economic achievements of American workers. It constitutes a yearly national tribute to the contributions workers have made to the strength, prosperity, and well-being of our country.

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The Founder(s) of Labor Day

More than 100 years after the first Labor Day observance, there is still some doubt as to who first proposed the holiday for workers.

Some records show that Peter J. McGuire, general secretary of the Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners and a cofounder of the American Federation of Labor, was first in suggesting a day to honor those “who from rude nature have delved and carved all the grandeur we behold.”

But Peter McGuire’s place in Labor Day history has not gone unchallenged. Many believe that Matthew Maguire, a machinist, not Peter McGuire, founded the holiday. Recent research seems to support the contention that Matthew Maguire, later the secretary of Local 344 of the International Association of Machinists in Paterson, N.J., proposed the holiday in 1882 while serving as secretary of the Central Labor Union in New York. What is clear is that the Central Labor Union adopted a Labor Day proposal and appointed a committee to plan a demonstration and picnic.

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The First Labor Day

The first Labor Day holiday was celebrated on Tuesday, September 5, 1882, in New York City, in accordance with the plans of the Central Labor Union. The Central Labor Union held its second Labor Day holiday just a year later, on September 5, 1883.

In 1884 the first Monday in September was selected as the holiday, as originally proposed, and the Central Labor Union urged similar organizations in other cities to follow the example of New York and celebrate a “workingmen’s holiday” on that date. The idea spread with the growth of labor organizations, and in 1885 Labor Day was celebrated in many industrial centers of the country.

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A Nationwide Holiday

The form that the observance and celebration of Labor Day should take was outlined in the first proposal of the holiday — a street parade to exhibit to the public “the strength and esprit de corps of the trade and labor organizations” of the community, followed by a festival for the recreation and amusement of the workers and their families. This became the pattern for the celebrations of Labor Day. Speeches by prominent men and women were introduced later, as more emphasis was placed upon the economic and civic significance of the holiday. Still later, by a resolution of the American Federation of Labor convention of 1909, the Sunday preceding Labor Day was adopted as Labor Sunday and dedicated to the spiritual and educational aspects of the labor movement.

The character of the Labor Day celebration has undergone a change in recent years, especially in large industrial centers where mass displays and huge parades have proved a problem. This change, however, is more a shift in emphasis and medium of expression. Labor Day addresses by leading union officials, industrialists, educators, clerics and government officials are given wide coverage in newspapers, radio, and television.

The vital force of labor added materially to the highest standard of living and the greatest production the world has ever known and has brought us closer to the realization of our traditional ideals of economic and political democracy. It is appropriate, therefore, that the nation pay tribute on Labor Day to the creator of so much of the nation’s strength, freedom, and leadership — the American worker.

References:

Labor Day. (n.d.). Retrieved September 1, 2014, from US Deptarment of Labor: http://www.dol.gov/laborday/history.htm

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Looking for business management books? 

 Ethics and Breaching Audio book Ad

Ethics and the Three Tiers of Management Part 1

Published July 9, 2014 by Mayrbear's Lair

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Leaders interested in developing an ethical culture are dedicated to the creation and advancement of best practices in business ethics. In addition, they practice corporate social responsibility and implement anti-corruption programs with systems that are sustainable. In spite of all the changes that continue to shape how business is conducted in today’s market place, there are still certain aspects of organizational management that remain the same such as the general distinction of a group’s managerial levels. In his book, Organizational Behavior, Donald Baack (2012) points out that at the center of every organization you will find the following three tiers of management: (a) the first-line supervisors who are in the role of operational managers; (b) the middle managers who play the part of tactical managers; and (c) the CEO and top management staff members who act as the organization’s strategic managers. Leaders focused on building an ethical culture will address different ethical issues at each level.

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Individuals, for instance, who climb a company’s managerial ladder, typically begin their career at the entry level. Later, they work on moving into a supervisor role and afterwards can choose whether to continue their pursuit and climb the corporate ranks until they reach a CEO position. As a result of this strategy, those individual’s orientation, duties, and required skill sets, will evolve. In other words, as managers rise in corporate executive positions, concepts they obtain along the way from their experiences in organizational behavior, will assist their ability to build and refine the talents needed to achieve successful outcomes at each level while avoiding unethical conduct. The most effective way to achieve these results is to address what constitutes right and wrong behavior in general, as well as within each managerial tier.


Ethics Audio Ad New release

In my eBook, Ethics in the Real World, I share from my own experiences as a corporate professional, several examples of how ethical issues are addressed and I also reveal how one staff member with outdated views on morality, in addition to his confusion on what constitutes ethical behavior in the workplace, almost got him arrested. On Friday we will look at how these different managerial levels are addressed in the development of an ethical culture. Until then, keep working on expanding your leadership skills!

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Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. – Albert Einstein

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References:

Baack, D. (2012). Organizational Behavior. San Diego, CA: Bridgepoint Education, Inc.

Berry, M. A. (2013). Ethics in the Real World. USA: Kindle Direct Publishing.

 

Ethics as a Managerial Skill

Published July 7, 2014 by Mayrbear's Lair

Before we begin this week’s post we’d like to say:

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And now … this week’s post, Ethics as a Managerial Skill

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The media is saturated with stories about ethical misconduct and reckless behavior from leaders. This has led to such outcomes like: (a) corporate and government shutdowns; (b) drug addicted politicians that abuse their power;  (c) billionaires whose actions are destructive and appear immoral; and (d) respected officials in religious and educational institutions that use their power to abuse innocent victims. Has this occurred because of outdated views on leadership? Do many people in elite positions lack education on what defines moral misconduct? Have they lost their sense of right and wrong behavior because of the unlimited power that comes from their status? Did they develop and nurture a narcissistic personality disorder due to their elite position where greed becomes a sickness that drives their internal engines toward abusive behavior and misconduct? Were these leaders corrupted because of little or no oversight and did not face punishment or consequences for poor outcomes? Regardless of the reasons behind misconduct, what all these components have in common is leadership that did not  exercise ethical behavior.

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In his book, The No Asshole Rule, management and engineering professor at Stanford University, Robert Sutton (2007), suggests that many managers intentionally use intimidation as a strategy to gain and maintain power. However, in most situations, he contends the asshole simply does not get the best results. Furthermore, psychological studies show that abusive bosses reduce productivity, stifle creativity, and can cause high rates of absenteeism, company theft, and turnover. In fact, according to one study, 25 percent of bullied employees and 20 percent of those who witness bullying, will eventually quit because of it (Sutton, 2007). Although many managers and leaders are effective and productive in their roles, those who reveal the following characteristics: (a) behavior with cultural views that were developed from distorted views on morality, (b) a code of ethics based on unhealthy levels of narcissistic behavior, and (c) severe limitations in right and wrong behavior, are typically unable to acknowledge a problem even exists. In short, any misconduct that occurs will not change unless the topic of ethical conduct is addressed and each staff member comprehends and acknowledges, what constitutes right and wrong behavior as well as what is expected from each employee in any given situation at the organization.

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In my eBook Ethics in the Real World (2013), just released on audiobook, I point out that individuals in leadership positions can become dangerous without consequences or have someone to answer to. In addition, those in positions of power, for instance, desperate to achieve their own pursuits, do not typically operate within the rules of reciprocity. This usually occurs because of leaders who have carefully crafted and cultivated an environment of enablers (Berry, 2013). Sometimes the misconduct is exposed and the guilty parties are persecuted. Many times however, it is never exposed.

On Wednesday we will identify three main managerial groups within an organization and take a closer look at the role each one plays in sculpting an ethical culture. Until then, keep building your leadership skills and stay organized!

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Force always attracts men of low morality. – Albert Einstein

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References:

Baack, D. (2012). Organizational Behavior. San Diego, CA: Bridgepoint Education, Inc.

Berry, M. A. (2013). Ethics in the Real World. USA: Kindle Direct Publishing.

Sutton, R. (2007). The no asshole rule: Builind a Civilized Workplace and surving one that isn’t. New York, NY: Warner Business Books.

Ethics Audio Ad Just released

Happy Independence Day America!

Published July 4, 2014 by Mayrbear's Lair

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Thank you everyone for embarking on this journey with me. I am deeply grateful for your continued support and humbled you’ve stuck around! For those of us who are celebrating America’s Independence Day, I wish you a happy holiday weekend!

In the meantime, I’ll be back next week with new posts and on Monday, I will announce the five lucky winners of our Sweepstakes! It’s not too late to enter.  We’re still accepting entries until midnight this Sunday! Good luck everyone! Have fun and enjoy this holiday responsibly!

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“Don’t be the firecracker that can injure others. Be mindful when your emotions ignite.” – M. A. Berry

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Breaching Communication Barriers Independence Day Sweepstakes!

Published July 2, 2014 by Mayrbear's Lair

The feedback on Breaching Communication Barriers is starting to come in:

“Wonderful!”  “I really enjoyed this!” “Entertaining and easy to understand!”

 Just click the graphic below to submit your email address and enter the Sweepstakes!

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Good luck … and have a Happy Fourth of July weekend!

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Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow. – Albert Einstein

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Summer Vacation Sweepstakes!

Published June 30, 2014 by Mayrbear's Lair

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Media Magic and Audible.com Summer Vacation Sweepstakes

Are you fed up trying to get a message across to someone or at your place of employment, but are unsuccessful because of fortified communication barriers? Have you had your fair share of setbacks due to poor communication or ineffective leadership skills? Are you or someone you know, interested in learning mindful communication techniques? Then sign up to our sweepstakes for a chance to win a free copy of our new audio book:

Breaching Communication Barriers currently on sale at Audible.com.

New Media Magic Facebook Sweepstakes ad

This short audio book can make a great addition to your summer plans because it is entertaining, informative, and includes a relaxation technique specifically designed to help you with principals of positive thinking. Vacations are great for taking time away from a busy schedule  to charge your internal batteries but they are also a good time to take on new experiences. When we are in a relaxed state of mind, we are open to receive new information that can be valuable and life changing, especially when we are enjoying some quiet time at the pool or beach. By listening to this audio book, you will understand more clearly why communication in the modern era can be challenging. It will also provide you with great tips on how to be a more effective communicator. Plus, the bonus track is specifically designed as an innovative tool to help in the development of mindful communication techniques intended to affect positive changes.

How To Enter the Sweepstakes

To enter our sweepstakes, simply click on the Sweepstakes graphic above and submit your email address no later than July 4, 2014, for a chance to win your complimentary copy. Once all entries have been received, we will randomly select five winners and award each one a complimentary copy of the audio book.

Thanks for entering and good luck!

Winners will be announced July 7, 2014 when we will return from summer vacation with all new posts! 

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Education is what remains after one has forgotten what one has learned in school. – Albert Einstein

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Success in Management and Communication

Published June 9, 2014 by Mayrbear's Lair

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There are two themes that are relevant in the world of communication, learning communication skills to help navigate a successful career and adapting these skills to succeed in a leadership or managerial position. Baack (2012) suggests that leaders with superior communication skills not only gather information, they comprehend and communicate that information in a way that empowers others while earning their respect and loyalty. These are the architects that establish new career models as a framework that can be applied to any industry (Baack, 2012). In other words, these leaders have developed a strong set of principles to guide their interpersonal relationships as well as the communication constructs that motivates them to achieve successful outcomes.

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In my eBook, Breaching Communication Barriers (2013), I reveal how communication problems in the workplace can become hostile and toxic as well as the role employees play in tearing down a company’s reputation (Berry, 2013). In the meantime, employees that communicate a positive view of their organization are also happy to offer their loyalty to a firm. For example, Southwest Airlines, (SWA) one of America’s success stories, provides an ideal example of how effective communication played an integral role in helping them build a successful business model. Herb Kelleher, the firm’s leader, worked hard with his employees to build and maintain a reputation influenced by his management style which included the following concepts: (a) revealing the company’s purpose, vision and values, (b) making people heroes, (c) being honest and consistent with communication, (d) maintaining a flow of open communication between all divisions, and (e) providing staff members with applicable information to help them make the most effective decisions.

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While many leaders focus their strategies by keeping the customer happy, the SWA leader focused his model on keeping the employees happy. He believed this was the most effect method to succeed in the aviation industry because employees that are content and valued at the workplace are also motivated to perform at higher levels.

On Wednesday we will take a closer look at the similarities and differences in business and management communication. Until then … keep working on reaching your highest potential!

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A perfection of means, and confusion of aims, seems to be our main problem. – Albert Einstein

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arriving soon

References:

Baack, D. (2012). Management Communication. San Diego, CA, USA: Bridgepoint Education.

Berry, M. A. (2013). Breaching Communication Barriers (Vol. 2). (C. Angela, Ed.) USA: Kindle Direct Publishing.