Wednesday, December 12, 2007


Our guest speaker was Dr. Huse.

The conversation was very interesting and interactive. My family is from the same side of the globe as his own country. Even my prediction about his culture were wrong.

The lesson learned is to never assume until you have really done your research.

Before I thought that the Japanese would be more passing and about "saving face" but these concepts are in fact--false.

Dr. Huse also pointed out that Americans are team oriented. I would've thought the opposite, and I live here.

New Topic:
Today in the news, there was a Jewish man who was beat up for saying "Happy Haunukkah" a gang of "Christians" told the Jewish man that he killed Jesus. A muslim man saw all of this and tried to help the Jewish guy. The muslim got beat up.

Muslim + Jew = Team?

The point is this. In journalism we have to make sure what we are really reporting is true. I asked a few of my Muslim and Jewish friends about the relationship between the two cultures. They both said it's the governments more than anything that don't get along--the people are actually fine.

Again. Don't make the stereotypes.

Monday, December 3, 2007

Diversity Run In

This is probably the first time I ever revealed this story to anybody. The one person in the case never told me to say thing, and I haven't said anything until now.

My first internship was in one of the world's most fast paced city. I barely hold enough to vote and I had never really understood professonalism. I worked for a multi-billion dollar marketing company as a public relations intern.

The particular office location I worked in was shockingly small for a multi-billion dollar. The office manager told me the other locations the company had were significantly larger by the thousands.

I thought wow, this is really boring. The office was always quiet and the most exciting thing that ever happened is when the office manager put more orange soda and ginger ale in the fridge when a new office supply load came in.

One thing that I never encountered before was this issue of sexual diversity in an office.

There was a woman, "Greta," who handled the company's financial matters. She made sure budget wise the company was doing okay. It was known she had a fiance and that she was very not on the market. Her fiance even stopped by the office a few times.

There was a married man, "Scott," who had a wife and daughter who held a senior level position in the company who also worked in the office.

Scott wrote a detailed note to Greta describing the sexual activities he wanted to engage in with her. She clearly was not interested at all, and she decided to ignore it. After a few days, Scott came into Greta's office and frantically asked her, "Did you destroy the note, you have to destroy the note." The highest ranking corporate executives were coming into town and he didn't want the note to be floating around when they arrived.

Greta just told him "Yes." Scott always arrived to work early to get an early start on the day. He was good at his job, and friendly to people. I would have never expected those types of actions from him.

Greta likes to arrive at work early as well, but if Scott is there first, and no one else has gotten into the office--She turns around and goes back downstairs and sits at a Starbucks until she knows when people will arrive.

I remember thinking, "This happens in a professional multi-billion dollar firm?" Greta told me to never tell anyone. She told me in her Long Island accent that she would come down to Texas and cut my throat with a nail file if I told.

Why was she so scared? Because she didn't want to be a whistleblower. There were people who could've taken care of this matter that she knew, but she just didn't want to speak.

The guy gets away with. Get's to work early and looks good doing it. While Greta gets to work early, but has to turn around and wait at Starbucks.


My older brother told me that, "All the companies are doing it. Enron just got caught." I think that's a little extreme to say, but I do believe "small" under the table business transactions do happen. Maybe these transactions don't happen on the big national scale that the Crooked E did but nonetheless these actions are still unethical.

I think a PR Professional, or any professional, has to really sit down and ask themselves, "What would I do in that situation?"

It's hard to be a whistle blower but even in the case of Enron, there were people aware, but chose not to say anything.

Thousands of professionals lost everything due to the standards of this company. It was like a buy all the booze now party and worry about paying for it later type case.

My Human Resource professor said that we have to responsible advocates for being ethical professionals by researching the company before we join. Sometimes this is difficult because some of the inner workings of a company can't be revealed immediately. But I do agree that it maybe it will take six months to a year to figure out what a company is really about.

Any job is worth taking lower pay if it means that the job is clean.

Monday, November 12, 2007

This is my fake and SO not real Apple apology. This apology is just written by me, a college student, who would've apologized in a different way from Apple.

Dear Apple Friends,

When Apple created the iPhone, our creators envisioned a new product that would change the technology communications community.

In today's market, we at Apple saw the opportunity to make a competitive decision.

This decision came at too high of a cost to our loyal Apple friends . The relationship between Apple and the people who use our products is one we value, and one we should have paid closer attention to.

Please accept this small $100 credit as part of our apology for our inconsideration.

Thank you for all of your feedback and being honest with how you feel. All of your input is always part of the Apple creative process.



Monday, October 22, 2007

The Play:
I'll say this. The characters went to different ends to make their ends meat. From the audience, we question what their motivation is. Their motivation might be to make the highest dollar or to just feed the mouths of the people in their family.

It's really easy for us to say what we "would do" compared to what we would actually do in the situation. I'm starting to think that "corporate America" is unavoidable sometimes. We have to either make an ethical decision, or not eat. It's largely about choosing your battles to do what's right in today's present time.

I have mixed feelings about these. It's good for companies, but it might not be the best use of a company's resources. It's kind of a shot gun way of marketing, and hard to measure the rate-of-return.

Monday, September 24, 2007

Southwest, Cheer, and NY Times

I think it’s always good when your employer has your back. Sometimes the higher ups will question why a certain employee did what she or he. I think the best bosses will always back you in up in the best way.

Maybe that’s what was happening here. Southwest was backing up the guy who told the young lady to change.

I don’t know why Southwest didn’t just issue an apology. This incident alone will always be one of the stories the public thinks about when they fly Southwest. Every time a Southwest employee makes a joke over the speaker phone on the plane, people will ask, “Are they really like that?” People want to believe that Southwest is the fun, come as you are airline. The airline really wouldn’t have lost anything fiscally had they made an apology so I don’t know what the big fuss was about. I love this airline, but from the PR perspective, I give them a thumbs down in this case.

Cheerleading Story.
Politics apparently doesn’t just work in Washington or Austin. It works in the hearts of high school teenagers also.

I’d like to believe that the truth always comes out and that defamation of character is only temporary until that time comes.

Monday, September 17, 2007

I was in Taiwan visiting my family. A close friend of mine is a vice-president in his family’s company. After work one day I met up with my friend, and he brought along one of his business associates from the mainland.

We made the initial small talk and then I proceeded to ask the business associate about his corporation’s practices. He told me his company was heavily vertically integrated. Where the discussion became slightly heated is when he told me about the factory his corporation’s products were manufactured in. In fact, he didn’t even use the term “factory,” he referred to it as “the sweat shop.”

That’s really what it was. He described the conditions to me as unfortunate but necessary to even be considered as a competitor in the market.

I thought surely this is not practiced in America. When I got back to the states I did some digging around. I pulled an article, which I’ve saved to this day, about Nike Corp and their “sweat shops.”

Just like this pig iron Nike did not directly own the factory but contracted out with a manager in China who did. The article described how the factory only hired young females to work. The young women had to pay rent to the factory to have a place to stay in the dormitory, and pay checks were rarely given.

I’m from Austin. I grew up only knowing the “mom and pop” and was raised by the city to know that the Devil and Wal-Mart were the same thing.

If all of our corporations in America were to pull out and spend the dollars to be ethical, would our economy tank? I ask myself, “Are we to in to even consider getting out? Even if we wanted to?”

Maybe this be the first step. Corporate America will be Corporate America, but we are the individuals working in the matrix of it. Maybe we take the responsibility to look at a company’s business practices and say “yay” or “nay” if they give us a job offer.

We say no to the companies that do not practice business ethics all the way down and be vocal about it. We create a different business cultural climate where people want to do the right thing.

Even in the case of the Dallas Cowboys. Do the people deserve to know? One of my public relations profs said, “Unless you are asked to do something illegal, suck it up and do your job as a pr practitioner.” What can you comfortably go to sleep to at the end of the night?