7 Women Business and Leadership Role Models From the Bible to Inspire Christian Women in Business

Christian women today have many women mentors and role models from Bible days on which to base their business and leadership ventures. The qualities and characteristics of these women from long ago provide patterns for running successful enterprises as well as for being involved in government, legal matters, community organizing and even military operations. Most … Continue reading “7 Women Business and Leadership Role Models From the Bible to Inspire Christian Women in Business”

Christian women today have many women mentors and role models from Bible days on which to base their business and leadership ventures. The qualities and characteristics of these women from long ago provide patterns for running successful enterprises as well as for being involved in government, legal matters, community organizing and even military operations. Most of these women were married and some functioned from their homes. The activities of these women are often not discussed, leaving some of the best means of motivation and encouragement for contemporary women unknown. This article presents a brief background along with the qualities and skills of only 7 top Bible women in business and leadership who have lessons to share for today.

1. Rahab: Joshua 2:1-22; 6:17-25. Rahab was a businesswoman who ran a lodging place and provided for her family members. Often misrepresented as a prostitute, there is no evidence of this in the Bible. She became known for her willingness to take great risks to negotiate with new people for the protection of herself and her family. Running a lodging facility meant being able to manage a staff of workers, keep clients happy and serve the needs of people from all backgrounds. It also meant being misunderstood by those who didn’t understand this nontraditional business role for women. The leadership qualities and skills of Rahab included being industrious and wise, having a business plan, management abilities and negotiation skills.

2. Lydia:Acts 16:14-15, 40. Lydia was a well-known businesswoman who dyed and sold purple cloth. Royalty and the wealthy wore purple cloth. That meant she had a high end target market. Her business had to provide a consistent, high-quality product to meet the standards and needs of a wealthy clientele. She also had employees, which means her company provided jobs for people in her community. Lydia was an entrepreneur who probably would have had a corporate structure. She displayed qualities and skills that included organization management and growth, employee training and development, and strong target market skills.

3. Priscilla:Acts 18:1-3; 24-28. Priscilla worked alongside of her husband, Aquila, as partners in a tent making business out of their home. She was first mentioned as the mentor to the great Apollo who she helped mentor to preach with more direction and authority. She also traveled extensively in the capacity of evangelist. Her qualities and skills were in working in harmony in a business partnership, managing a home-based business, business development and growth, multi-tasking, coordination, human relations, and mentoring skills.

4. Huldah:2 Kings 22:14-20: 2 Chronicles 34:22-28. Huldah was a prominent prophetess and married woman who was sought out by the King’s Advisors for counsel about spiritual matters. Huldah was known for being honest, highly intelligent and a scholar of the Scriptures. The qualities and skills she shares with contemporary Christian women include being a strategist, teacher, strong communicator, life-long learner and a leader who advised others and made hard decisions.

5. Phoebe:Romans 16:1-2. Phoebe was a preacher who worked closely with the Apostle Paul. She was sent by Paul to teach and preach the gospel to the new believers in Rome. Paul strongly urged the believers there to accept her preaching and to support her while in Rome. Phoebe understood the right time to approach others with new ideas and came with the proper introductions. She went to Rome as an evangelist and some believe as a deaconess. The qualities and skills presented by Phoebe are project manager, evangelist of new ideas, teacher, preacher, and collaborator.

6. Deborah:Judges 4 – 5. Deborah was the first woman to be a judge over a nation. She was willing to take on necessary hard tasks that others would not do. Through her leadership the laws of the land were understood and she promoted ethical behavior through the law. Deborah led the Israelite army into a victorious battle in a particularly difficult war situation when her General refused to ride into battle without her. Deborah was a powerful law-maker with qualities and skills as an Army Commander, leader of large groups, decision-maker, motivator, judge, and political official.

7. Candace, Queen of the Ethiopians, Acts 8:27. The Candaces were female rulers of in the African nation of Ethiopia (also known in ancient times as Kush). Unlike Queens of some other African Nations of that time, the Queens of Kush, who were independent rulers, known as Candaces, a distinctive title that existed for 500 years. One Candace received the information about spiritual matters from her treasurer who was baptized by the Apostle Philip during a long journey on state matters. She was receptive of new and better ideas to benefit those she represented. These powerful women had qualities and skills of being national political leaders, rulers, and warriors. They were decision-makers, negotiators and goal-oriented.

Christian women in business have some fabulous role models from Bible women for doing business and being a leader in these contemporary times. The few examples given in this article only provide highlights to the types of activities women had as spiritual and church leaders. These women were ministers, servant leaders, organizers, motivators, and persuaders. They used effective communication skills, organized church events, meetings and services. Knowing their lessons can inspire women even in these modern times to reach higher goals.

Being a Widow in India is a Curse

As spectators to India’s surge ahead towards becoming a global nation we some times tend to forget the centuries old traditions that have often defined India across time. And even today’s generation thinks of India of yore it’s all the seemingly good things that come mind.

But along the superpower that India is, exists a rather rudimentary nation that still exists in the past. Mention the secluded lives of widows and many of us won’t even acknowledge that there are people who still think that the death of a spouse can alter the course of lives.

Lonely Images, a photo exhibition offered one such insight into the world of Indian widows. Often condemned to a life of loneliness and subjected to taunts, physical and mental torture at the hands of the deceased husband’s relatives, widows in India have no one else to turn to except gods.

Featuring the works of Ying Leong, Erik Boker, Brain Harmon and Vanessa Tang, Lonely Images highlights the women forced by centuries old traditions to renounce all of life’s luxuries.

Vanessa Tang shows the life of such women in the holy city of Benares. Tang’s lens captures the ‘slowness’ of a widows’ life along the banks of Ganga. The images are unlike anything that Incredible India would ever show you as they depict a world that is as old as time itself and yet survives parallel to the present.

Put together by the Guild For Service, an organisation dedicated to empowering women for more than forty years, the exhibition also highlights the work done by the Guild. Started in 1972 by the Nobel Peace Prize nominee Dr Mohini Giri, the organisation spearheads the movement for giving status to widows and bringing back dignity and joy to their lives.

Ying Leong’s photos feature the widows at Amar Bari, Guild For Service’s shelter home for widows in Vrindavan. The death of a husband changes everything for millions of women in India and more often than not this also means a journey to Vrindavan, one of India’s holiest town.

According to estimates Vrindavan has over 4,000 temples and the city is home to more than 20,000 widows. Forced to live according to the ancient scriptures such as The Dharmashatra, which covers the moral, ethical and social laws of ancient India, Amar Bari has women whom tradition expects to devote the remainder of their lives to the memory of the departed husband.

The last section of Lonely Images is made up by the joint works of Erik Boker and Brain Harmon. Large canvases featuring classical studio portraits of widowed women form a better part of the duo’s work. The images might be staged, the set-ups might be planned but the photographers nevertheless capture rare glimpses of happiness in their subjects.

Visually stunning and strong images, some of them break away from traditional portraits and focus on cutaways and close ups of hands and eyes. It might be very easy for many of us to shun the rules of yore by spinning yarns of progress but we need to understand that no matter how far we come some part of the past just refuse to die.

NOTE: This photography exhibition in Delhi depicts clearly the lonely images of an Indian widow’s life.

Broker Joint Venture Deals – 16 Fast and Easy Ways to Make Money

A Joint Venture (JV) is also known as ‘business deal’, ‘strategic alliance’, or ‘strategic partnership’. Probably the simplest definition is that Joint venture is a win-win strategic partnership between two or more businesses or individuals who agree to leverage each other’s resources in order to achieve common economic objectives. Resources could be in the form of technology, relationships, access to existing customers, expertise, knowledge, credibility, employees, facilities, finance, etc.

Examples of Easy, Profitable and Simple Joint Venture Deals

Here are just a few examples of JV deals you can broker:

1. Tollgating

2. Reciprocal Arrangements

3. Sharing Resources

4. Promotional Partnerships

5. Create Profit Centers for Businesses

Let’s look at each one in more detail.

Method #1: Tollgating

Tollgating simply means finding a group of people with a high enough demand and connecting them with the source of supply. You then stand between them (like a tollgate collector) and collect money as buyers go through the tollgate. This method is also known as “Triangulation.”

Examples of Tollgating:

1. Let’s say that in your local area, there’s an Association of Architects. Say they have at least 50 members and they socialize weekly. If you’re able to persuade them to meet once a week at a specific restaurant or hotel, you can arrange a deal with the restaurant/hotel owner to give you a percentage of their weekly bill.

2. Another way you can tollgate is by finding successful businesses. There are businesses out there who are actually turning customers away because they are unable to meet the demand. Get them to pass the leads to you. Then you can direct these leads to another business who will do all the work. You then collect commissions for every converted lead.

3. Locate someone with a product to sell, and find someone who owns a list of customers who have a strong desire for the product in question. Get the list owner to endorse the product, and you collect commission from every sale made.

4. When a business goes bankrupt, make money by locating someone who is willing to: buy the old inventory, buy the old phone number in order to convert incoming callers, buy the database of customers, fulfill pending orders, take over the lease, etc.

Method #2: Reciprocal Arrangements

This is a I-scratch-your-back-you-scratch-mine sort of arrangement.

The fact is that each business has strengths and weaknesses, and many business owners don’t know how to compensate for their weaknesses, thus producing problems. But a smart JV broker like you can address this by partnering up businesses with complementary qualities so that together they are stronger and more profitable.

Examples of Reciprocal Arrangements:

1. Barter – a magazine may agree to let a restaurant pay for a month’s worth of advertising by lettting the magazine’s key staff to eat for free for a set period of time; a marketing consultant may agree to help a fitness professional generate more leads in exchange for personal training.

2. Connect two businesses with products/services that complement each other. Get them to tap into each others customer base by getting them to continually endorse/promote each others goods to their own customers. For example, you can arrange for a beauty spa to promote a health club down the road (and vice versa); or encourage a hair salon to “reward” their loyal customers with gift certificates from a restaurant, thus driving potentially lifetime customers to the restaurant. In all cases, you collect a commission from any resulting sales.

Method #3: Sharing Existing Resources

You can leverage existing resources that are underutilized and make money in the process.

Examples of Sharing Resources:

1. You can launch a jewelry designer’s career by arranging to have her creations displayed along with the goods in a posh retail shop selling designer handbags. The jewelry designer doesn’t pay any rent, but she pays a commission to you and the retail shop owner every time she makes a sale.

2. You can make passive income by finding student tenants for landlords in your local area. You can semi-automate the process by giving a list of local accommodations to a person working in the Admissions Office of major Universities/schools in your area and ask them to actively help the student applicants find accommodations. Make sure to reward your contacts, of course.

3. Licensing – If you have (or know someone with) a system, intellectual resources, or any non-perishable intangibles that other people are willing to pay for, you can simply grant them rights to use these resources in exchange for a small fee. You can license a software, hard to get information, a useful research finding, a specialist equipment, etc. Bob Serling has a wealth of resources about licensing.

4. Piggybacking – you can take advantage of an existing infrastructure easily. For example, you can insert your promotional leaflet in the envelopes of a National direct mailing company who already mails 100,000 letters a month to their existing subscribers. Agree to give them a percentage of your profits.

Method #4: Promotional Partnerships

Are you (or do you know) someone who is an expert salesperson/marketer? You can team up with someone who has a product/service to sell but is clueless about how to sell it.

1. Become an Agent – You can help book speakers, bands, entertainers, artists, performers, etc. and get paid a healthy commission.

2. Affiliate Marketing – You can market/sell other people’s products and gain a commission for every sale made. If you don’t want to do the selling, you can get someone else to do it for you. You can also look for businesses with no affiliates, set up their affiliate program, recruit the affiliates, let them do all the selling and marketing, and then you just collect a small commission.

Method #5: Creating Profit Centers for Existing Businesses

It’s a fact that many people who are in business don’t know how to gain a steady stream of buyers continuously.

1. Bundling- You can add a complimentary product or service to an existing one with already existing distribution routes, and collect commissions. For example, most real estate agents can make more money and serve their customers even more if they also recommend services like removals, interior design, plumbing, electrical, plastering, etc. to every person they sell a house to. But most real estate agents don’t know this, so you can set up this arrangement and profit.

2. Encourage restaurants to sell Advertising spaces and get paid by finding advertisers. Restaurants can earn money by displaying ads on their bathrooms, at the back of their menu, on their wide screen TVs, or even on their announcement boards.

3. Do you live in an area where there are no 24-hour Dentists / restaurants / bakeries/ liquor store/ entertainment centers? You can arrange a deal where a business owner agrees to allow someone else to use their existing facilities at times when they are usually closed in return for rent money or a percentage of the profits.

4. Talk to an offline business who have no clue about online marketing. Strike a deal where you use online marketing methods to promote the business, and get paid commission for any resulting sales. You can easily do this deal with Experts and Gurus – people who have a wealth of information inside their heads, but they lack knowledge how to turn their expertise into information products and sell them online. You can act as their online publisher (or JV with an existing online publisher) and take a piece of the profits.

In Conclusion

Being a Joint Venture broker can be very easy and rewarding if only you know how to listen to other people’s needs. To be successful all you need to do is solve problems by leveraging already existing resources and establishing trustworthy relationships. You don’t need a product or business of your own. You don’t need to be an expert, you don’t need any experience, you can be 18 years old or 80 years old, you can have a PhD or you can be a high school drop out – it doesn’t matter.

Piles Disease – What Exactly Is Piles Disease?

What is piles disease? You might have come across the term piles disease, completely clueless to what it means. Piles is just another term for hemorrhoids, an abnormality in the rectum where the veins of the rectal lining swell up. Hemorrhoids can be a very embarrassing disorder, and those who are afflicted tell of how extremely painful it is to lose their bowels. Pregnant women are more likely to develop hemorrhoids due to the pressure the baby has on their rectal area. Continues pressure in the anal area, whether voluntary or involuntary, can cause the veins of the rectum to become engorged in blood, causing what all people know as hemorrhoids.

People who have piles disease develop a variety of hemorrhoids symptoms. The most common are blood found in the bowels, itching in the anal area, extreme pain and discomfort when sitting down or straining in the toilet, and even feces leaking uncontrollably in one’s underpants. People can either have internal or external hemorrhoids. Internet hemorrhoids happen when the veins inside in the anal area swell, causing discomfort even if they’re not visible. External hemorrhoids happen when the person strains too much, causing the veins to protrude which can always be very painful.

If you suspect that you have hemorrhoids, there are a couple of things that you need to do. First and foremost, you need to consult a doctor. Always remember that not all forms of anal bleeding are due to hemorrhoids. Some forms of bleeding in the anus are caused by particular forms of cancers, so always ask your doctor about these. Piles disease is not contagious or infectious, so don’t worry about spreading the disease to others.

Hemorrhoids can be a very vague disorder, and though people say that hemorrhoids are caused by straining too much, medical professionals are quick to say that there are other more pressing factors that cause this. Constipation can play a huge part in the development of hemorrhoids, and even pregnancy can influence its formation as well. Some doctors say that developing hemorrhoids can be genetic, while others say it has nothing to do with the genes. No matter what the cause of piles disease is, know full there is a hemorrhoids treatment available for you to try out. Over the counter products, homeotherapy, and surgeries are a treatment for hemorrhoids, and they provide relief for people who are suffering from it as well.

Technical Writing Trends : Substance vs. Style?

As a technical writer, you strive for Accuracy, Clarity and Readability. But where do you strike the balance? Although the definition of Substance ought not to change, it is influenced by evolving trends in Style.

Substance is, of course, ever the more important part of technical writing. But Style is what keeps the reader awake!

Substance, here, includes Accuracy and Clarity.

Style, here, means smooth, interesting, intelligible — all of which can be lumped in under Readability.

Accuracy no longer has to mean mind-numbingly detailed writing. Clarity, in fact, proscribes that. Readability ensures that the technical information actually gets read. If no one is able to plow through a piece of technical writing, then the information simply does not get out.

No tragedy with an article such as this. But suppose a bridge building crew tossed aside a technical bulletin because it was unreadable. What if the loss of that information caused a locomotive to fall into a ravine, killing hundreds of passengers?

(Of course, one resulting headline pun might read: “Hundreds Die With Style.” But you, as a technical writer, would not be writing that one.)

All writing styles evolve over time; technical writing is no exception. Suppose we look at one short piece of an imagined technical article written in what would be an acceptable style in the early 1950s, then in the style of the 1980s and again in what some fear could become the style of the 2010s.

All three styles are describing a right triangle.

Technical Writing Style, circa 1950

The reader will be well acquainted with the fact that the length of the hypotenuse of a right triangle is defined by the square root of the summed squares of the other two sides. This quadratic relationship proves that the hypotenuse must always be longer than either the base or the altitude. The length of the hypotenuse can never be as long as the sum of the lengths of both the base and the altitude. These relationships are clearly seen in the following formula:

c-squared = a-squared + b-squared, where:

  • c = the length of the hypotenuse
  • a = the length of one leg (the altitude)
  • b = the length of the other leg (the base)

A right triangle is defined as a triangle where the two legs, or sides, representing the altitude (a) and the base (b) meet at precisely 90°.

(This style was dull, but still much improved from technical writing of only a decade or so earlier. Requirements imposed by World War II had abruptly changed attitudes. Information had to be accurate. As well, it needed to be clear. Lives often relied on information being understood easily by hastily trained military technicians. But style was still very much a step-child in the technical writing of the 1940s and 1950s.)

Technical Writing Style circa 1980

The length of the hypotenuse of a right triangle (c) is always longer than the length of the altitude (a) or the base (b). However, the length of the hypotenuse (c) will not be as long as the sum of the lengths of the other two sides (a + b).

The quadratic relationships of the lengths of the three sides of a right triangle can be seen from:

c-squared = a-squared + b-squared

Right triangles are formed when the two shorter sides (a) and (b) meet at exactly 90 degrees.

(Technical writers were rapidly adopting a crisper style as trade and technology were now international business concerns. Clarity was catching up with Accuracy. You could no longer assume that your customers were native English speakers. As well, ordinary people started buying personal computers and were becoming interested in learning about technology. Readability was increasingly important.)

Technical Writing Style circa 2010(?)

The longest side (hypotenuse) of any right triangle is always longer than either of the other two sides, but interestingly enough, never as long as both short sides added together.

The right angle was used by ancient Egyptians to square up their buildings. They knew that if one wall was 30 cubits long and the other wall was 40 cubits, a string stretched kitty-corner across the room should measure exactly 50 cubits. If not, the corners would not be square.

In a right triangle the two shortest sides meet at a right angle.

See a Flash Animation of the famous Pythagorean Theorem at:

[http://www.a2+b2=c2.ref]

(Assuming that the blog and the sound byte push Style to the forefront, Short, Simple and Silly will then prevail. Although this third “article” is more or less Accurate and Clearly written, where is the Substance? In place, it misuses Readability in the form of human interest and historical perspective. It may well entertain, but as technical writing, it is feckless. It could also be misleading. Note the “any right triangle”; have they discovered other right angles that are not precisely 90 degrees?)

Good technical writing should consist of genuine Substance conveyed in an appropriate Style. It should deliver specialized information suitable for furthering knowledge or awareness within a targeted interest group. The function of technical writing is still to imprint, not to impress.

A Cold Sore Vaccine is Coming Soon – Information About Current and Soon-to-Be-Released Vaccines

Current Herpes Vaccines

The odd thing is that there has been a vaccine around for the herpes virus for a while now: it’s called Zostavax. The thing is, though, that it’s a vaccine designed to prevent shingles, also known as “herpes zoster”–yes, the herpes virus causes the disease normally found in people over 60 usually known as shingles. In a 2005 study of 38,000 elderly adults, Zostavax prevented 1/2 the cases of shingles and reduced the number of cases of postherpetic neuralgia by 2/3. In October 2007 the vaccine was officially recommended in the U.S. for healthy adults aged 60 and over. Now, obviously, the problem with this is that it’s only effective against herpes zoster (shingles), and not cold sores or genital herpes, but don’t lose hope: the point of me telling you this is that herpes vaccines are in the works, and when one is successfully developed then another one for a different version of the virus, cold sores for example, is just one step away.

Vaccines Yet To Be Released

A much more promising vaccine that has been specifically said to potentially end up becoming a vaccine against HSV-1 (Herpes Simplex Virus Type 1, the strain of the virus that causes cold sores), is a vaccine currently in Phase III trials that’s designed to be a vaccine to prevent genital herpes in women. Herpes Simplex Type 2 (HSV-2) is typically the strain of herpes that causes genital herpes, but HSV-1 and HSV-2 are over 99% genetically identical and the scientists developing the vaccine are saying that they’ve found that those persons who: 1) Have never been exposed to either HSV-1 or HSV-2 and, 2) Receive the Herpevac vaccine, show immunity to both strains of the virus.

This means that the Herpevac vaccine, which is due to be approved by the FDA sometime in the very near future (probably less than a year), could potentially provide protection against HSV-1 IF you’ve never been exposed to herpes (either strain), thereby keeping you from ever developing a cold sore, or getting genital herpes for that matter (nice bonus isn’t it?).

If you’d like to get more information about the Herpevac trial OR you’d actually like to possibly participate in it (you must be a woman), then you can go to the official National Institute of Health Herpevac Trial for Women website at http://www.niaid.nih.gov/dmid/stds/herpevac/default.htm.

2017: A Year of Victory

This is your year of victory! Now, you will pass over to that side of victory. Your victory has come. This is marking the end of your weeping, gnashing of teeth, agonizing, tormenting from the enemy. This is marking the end of that mockery. You have stayed too long on that side. Now, rise and go over to the side of victory in Jesus’ name! Victory means conquest, triumph, win, success. I see you now crossing over victoriously in Jesus’ name! And to begin to cross over also means that you have been some where before now, but the place has been suppressing, holding back, unfavorable, unpleasant or unproductive. But Thank God, your year of changing positions has come. Praise God! Let’s go.

Israel was in that terrible situation like you. In Egypt, they were in slavery – suffering and suffocation. They were in a total hopeless captivity with no sign of help or deliverance. But at the appointed time God came for them. They were already resigned to their fate when He suddenly sent a deliverer to them. Yes, God moves suddenly! He comes unexpectedly – mostly when you have given up hope, when people have written you off, when your enemies, oppressors would have started rejoicing over you, then suddenly He would show up. My God! Look at His power coming for you now! Nothing, nobody, no power, no conspiracy, no power of hell can stop this move. You are due and will certainly move to victory, healing, recovery now. All win, all you lost will also be recovered.

When God brought Israel out of Egypt, in one move He displaced and decimated their enemies. He changed their statues, vision and also made them rich. Yes, very rich. We will soon discuss that. Divine deliverance will always come with divine reparation. Israel came out with silver and gold. In fact, the bible said that they ‘spoilt the Egyptians’. That is, they stripped, ruined, damaged, devastated and messed them up economically. They went away with all the gold and silver of Egypt! Praise God! We are not just having our victory, but we will celebrate it with silver and gold. True. One translation says the He brought them out with great wealth. It was immense, enormous, large, and stupendous. Wow! Great wealth indeed!

These are what this new year holds for you if you will believe this message. As Israel’s deliverance was hinged on believing on God’s message through Moses, your victory will be triggered off by your believe on what you are reading now. As Moses spoke to them, I speak to you today. As He spoke to the king of Egypt, I speak to your pharaoh to release you now! God has sent these words to bring you out of your suffering and slavery. Come out now in Jesus’ name! Share this message with others. We will continue next week. Happy New Year!

Management Based on Biblical Principles – Integrity – The Most Pressing Leadership Issue of Today

Amongst the myriad of imposing challenges currently weighing upon American society and abroad, the most pressing leadership issue of today is the need for a genuine practice of integrity instilled in corporate and organizational cultures. This essay will discuss how the lack of honesty and transparency in business and other sectors of life have reaped disastrous results for those who fail to practice them. The discussion begins with a quote from The McKinsey Quarterly about the quandary corporate leaders face when attempting to balance the need for a company’s long-term health and reputation against short-term profits and personal gratification or gain.

In an interview with Daniel Yankelovich, The McKinsey Quarterly staff writers Mendoca and Miller (2007) commented, “As more and more executives come to recognize that a company’s reputation is an important strategic asset, many are understandably confused as they ponder the numerous social and political issues that now stand alongside simple profit as a measure of long-term corporate health.” (p. 1). Unfortunately, leaders in some of the largest and most well-known organizations have not been able to withstand the temptation to place profits or personal gain ahead of long-term corporate health and reputation. In fact, recent events in the (a) corporate, (c) financial, and (d) political sectors of the United States serve as prime examples of how the lack of honesty and transparency has led to termination and loss for all stakeholders including the individual, the organization, its employees and the community at large. Included in such examples are:

1. The accounting debacle that brought down such large corporations as (a) Enron (aided by Arthur Anderson), (b) Adelphia, (c) Tyco, and (d) WorldCom each of which was forced to reorganize or close for filing false financial reports in order to maximize the value of their respective stocks. (Wygal, 2004, p. 1).

2. The collapse of once mighty investment banks like Lehman Brothers, Merrill Lynch and Washington Mutual as well as America’s largest mortgage company, Countrywide Mortgage, due to the ill-conceived subprime mortgage lending scheme. This crisis has led to the disintegration of the United States’ housing market and subsequently to a steep decline in the global financial markets. (Duncan, 2008, p. 1).

3. The exploits of Illinois governor Rob Blagojevich who has allegedly attempted to sell the Senate seat of President-elect Barak Obama to the highest bidder and has now been impeached by the Illinois state legislature. (Bone, J., 2008, p. 1).

In all the above cases top level executives either hid the truth or used positions of authority for ill-gotten gain. Their unethical actions resulted in a short-term thrill ride with an ultimate end that left stakeholders and shareholders worse off than when they started. In contrast, in a Business Week article published in April of 2002, Wee points out that sticking to a high ethical standard allowed corporate giant Johnson & Johnson to weather short-term public relation nightmares tied to its tainted Tylenol product and continue doing business for the long-term. (p. 2). All these examples illustrate that the most pressing need for today’s leader is to learn how to set aside the intense pressure for short-term gains and instant gratification in order to instill high ethical standards that will ensure sustained growth and long-term corporate health and profitability. This is so because potential clients remain loyal to companies they trust.

Trust is a major key for sustained growth. If customers trust a company to consistently offer superior products and services on the up and up and at an affordable price, they will repeatedly frequent that establishment. On the other hand, if an operation seems seedy and underhanded, regular and potential customers alike will flee and take their business elsewhere.

Delegated Media Regulation Within the Context of Broadcasting in South Africa

Introduction

This paper discusses the concept of delegated media regulation within the context of broadcasting in South Africa. It briefly discusses the history of media regulation during the apartheid period; the transformation of broadcasting media from an authoritarian government, to a liberalised media, the impact of the transformation with regards to internal media policies; focusing mostly in broadcasting media policy. The paper will then discuss the formation of independent regulatory agencies by government as delegated bodies; to monitor broadcasting media. These include the Independent Broadcasting Act of 1993 (IBA), the South African Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (SATRA) and the merger to the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (ICASA), the Broadcasting Complaints Commission of South Africa (BCCSA), and the existence of the Media Diversity and Development Agency (MDDA). In discussing these bodies, the paper will look at the role played by these organisations in regulating broadcasting media, and the impact they have in the development and monitoring of broadcasting media.

Brief History

Apartheid affected every single aspect of South Africa, including the media. Laws that regulated the media were tailor-made to restrict freedom of expression and subject the media to the extremes of the apartheid government. Before the rise of democracy, South Africa showed essential features of aristocracy; which consisted of whites, Indians and coloured people nominated to the legislative assembly. The ideology of apartheid brought division among the South African society along racial lines. The divisions in society and domination of the majority by the minority were reflected in policy formulation; which included stipulations that restricted the media (Fourie, 2004: 168). This was evident as the government exercised its powers in the broadcasting media. When the SABC was established in parliament, it was said to be the public broadcaster; but this was not the case. Because of political philosophies related to the political values of the society and those in power at the time, the SABC was the state broadcaster and not a public broadcaster; and as a result was said to be the apartheid state’s most powerful propaganda tool Dennis Jjuuko (2005: 3).

According to Jjuuko “The assumption to political power by the National Party in 1948 meant the Afrikanerisation of the SABC, which was achieved largely through controls of the board.” Jjuuko continues to say that during this time the SABC had to play a “significant role in the politics of the day, with no space to make independent editorial decisions.” This particularly had a negative impact on the importance on the SABC’s internal policies. As a result the SABC was referred to as “his master’s voice”, as it gave the government a platform to articulate the apartheid ideology, to control the people of South Africa; particularly blacks.

In support of this argument, one of the main laws that restricted media freedom was the one that reduced the broadcast/publication of activities of anti-government black groups. Fourie (2004) argues that from the apartheid laws “one can deduce that the public interest was very narrowly defined. (That) Many laws/policies of the apartheid regime only made provision for the interest of the minority and the security for their dominant position.”

Even though freedom of speech was in the constitution, it was not enshrined in the Bill of Rights, thus media freedom was not guaranteed. According to Fourie government/external policies forced the media to operate in a very restrictive legal framework; with more than 100 laws that restricted the conduct of journalists as well as media content. Government had the right to ban publications and to insist on the approval of media content before publication. This made the reporting of misconduct of government officials very difficult; and criticising the state was out of the question.

2. Transformation of broadcasting media

The transition to democracy during the mid 1990s raised questions on how to transform the media as an organ of “racist ideology into a forum of the advancement of national unity and equality” (Ashley Dawson). The transformation of the media incorporated issues of deregulation, liberalisation, diversification, industrialisation, convergence and privatisation. Also to be taken into account were economic issues, social and/ cultural issues, which include nationalism, local languages and cultural diversity; political issues-focusing on freedom of expression and freedom of speech, as well as the control and regulation of the media.

Early 1990, the National Party saw itself being influenced to take a liberal policy route in its broadcasting policies. This was due to the formation of a Task Group which was led by Professor H.C Viljoen, on Broadcasting in South Africa. The findings of the Task Group were not at all in favour of the apartheid government broadcasting policies. The recommendations were of a programming that “would cater for all sections of the general public” (Jjuuko, 2005). In a place of serving government, the SABC was to serve the public. The findings were clearly influenced by a functionalist paradigm and not power as was the case before.

Early 1994, the National Party (NP) and the African National Congress (ANC) agreed for the “SABC not to be used as a tool for political abuse” (Berger, 2004). Pressures rose as media practitioners were threatened by police and political activists, trying by all means to interfere with internal media policies and decisions. Media freedom was then enshrined in the constitution, as the right to information and freedom of speech.

Internal media policy

Internal policy can not be excluded from the external policy framework, for it is always formulated within the parameters of the external framework. This is due to the link between the media, economic and political structure of a country. Fourie (2001:190) states that “Internal media policy formulation takes place within the structure and operation of a medium itself. (And that) Gatekeepers are generally responsible for policy formulation on this level.”

A new political dispensation in South Africa impacted on the internal policy formulation of South Africa’s public broadcaster. There were also changes in the legal framework in the country, as the media could not broadcast nor publish certain information. “The unbanning of political organisations and political leaders in 1990 had an immediate impact on media internal policy” (Fourie). This was due to the fact that the apartheid news policy specified that the SABC would not offer a platform to opposition parties (Fourie, 2001). After 1990, the media experienced a more liberal working environment as the laws that restricted the media were amended; living more room for internal media policy.

As media democracy was in transition, government saw a need to delegate control to independent regulatory bodies to deal with media policy. These independent bodies would perform duties of allocation of frequency spectrum and licensing, the monitoring of broadcasters’ compliance with licence conditions, including content issues and competition, as well as protecting and upholding the editorial and programming independence of all broadcasters. All these changes were inevitably going to have an impact on both the power and importance of internal media policies over government external policies in both print and broadcasting media.

3. Independent regulatory bodies

3.1 SATRA – IBA – ICASA

Fourie argues that “The narrow articulation of the public interest by the previous government was also clearly reflected in telecommunications policy formulation and the implementation of this policy under apartheid.” As in broadcasting and print media, freedom to better services and access to this sector featured strongly in its policy formulation; also the application of universal service as a policy instrument reflected the historical inequalities of the South African society (Fourie, 2001).

The rise to democracy saw South Africa taking cognisance of the international trends; which included the deregulation of the telecommunications and broadcasting, and the phasing out of monopolies. Also technological developments which include convergence between broadcasting and telecommunications impacted on the regulation of both sectors.

The emergence of the first democratic elections in South Africa also lead to the transformation of the SABC as a public broadcaster; thus the formation of the Independent Broadcasting Act (IBA)1993, and the South African Telecommunications Regulatory Authority of 1996. SATRA was established as an independent body to regulate the telecommunications industry. Also as the independent regulator SATRA had to balance the interests of consumers, and the stakeholders in Telkom as well as the market participants. The formation of these two bodies was due to the need to ensure the development of the media in areas of public broadcasting, commercial and community broadcasting, and lastly to guard against internal media policy.

As part of the transformation the IBA called for the Triple Inquiry, which stated that the independence of the media is a central public principle which ensures editorial freedom (Triple Inquiry Report, 1995). In 1995 the government indicated that it “fully recognised and accepted the role of the media to be a critical commentator on government activity in the country” and that “the media should be beyond the control of government” (Johnson, 1996: 297, sited in Steyn).

The IBA was subsequently merged with SATRA in 2000 to form the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (ICASA). The merger was to ensure effective and seamless regulation of the telecommunications and the broadcasting sectors as well as to accommodate the convergence of technologies. Through the formation of this independent regulatory body, it was then decided that editorial independence together with internal media policies were of outmost importance; that the broadcaster (using the SABC as an example) should safeguard its editorial independence to ensure its credibility as a national source of reliable and regular information.

As the democracy years rolled over, successive ministers of communication attempted to claw back some of the forfeited control over electronic communications, and correspondingly reduce some of the independence for the players involved. This trend has also been in broadcasting. “Government has felt that SABC has been law unto itself in deciding how to deliver on, and be accountable for, its legally enshrined mandate” (Berger, 2005). This is what led to the introduction of editorial policies in the SABC, which was initiated by the Broadcasting Amendment Bill of 2002. In embracing the importance of these internal media policies; parliament declared the independent regulator ICASA; which works at arms length from the government to approve them.

ICASA derives its mandate from ICASA Act of 2000, the Independent Broadcasting Act of 1993, Broadcasting act of 1999, and Telecommunications Authority Act of 1996. ICASA’s mandate includes the regulation of broadcasting in the public interest, and to perform adjudication functions. As part of delegated media regulation, ICASA works hand-in-hand with the Broadcasting Complaints Commission of South Africa. The BCCSA was set up by National Association of broadcaster of Southern Africa in 1993 to adjudicate and mediate complaints against broadcasters/broadcasting licence holders.

ICASA also ensures fairness and diversity of views broadly representing South African society. One of its objectives is to ensure that in the provision of broadcasting services, the needs to language, cultural and religious groups, and the need of educational programmes, are taken into consideration (ICASA Position Paper 2000). It also promotes and encourages ownership and control of telecommunications and broadcasting services from historically disadvantaged groups. Again ICASA works with the Media Diversity and Development. Agency which also ensures the empowerment of previously disadvantaged groups.

3.2 The Media Diversity and Development Agency

After the 1994 democratic elections, the media in South Africa was still not reflective of the country’s diversity. The legacy of apartheid still played itself in various spheres of society, including the media, where the nature of the public discourse was shaped by patterns of ownership and control, such that the poor and disadvantage remained marginalised. The White Paper on Broadcasting Policy, 1998 concluded that, “Society benefits from free, independent, and pluralistic media.” It was then decided that a supportive policy environment was required; and in achieving this Government committed itself to corrective action.

This was due to the need to rectify the wrongs inflicted by apartheid in media development and diversity. Government took an initiative to set up an independent agency that will address problems of the media development and diversity in the country and provide assistance through loans and subsidies to the marginalised groups (MDDA position paper, November 2000). The MDDA’s mandate is to promote diversity and development in print, broadcasting and new media. It works with bodies dealing with Telecommunications, licensing and film. Also develops policies that are informed by ongoing research and evaluation.

4. Conclusion

It is of common knowledge that freedom of expression is one of the hallmarks of democracy; which requires a media that is free from state control. Before the democratisation of South Africa, the South African government was empowered to control the media, to limit free speech as it pleased. During this time newspapers were closed down, and anything that seemed to be giving voice to the voiceless, being a novel or a film, it was banned. Press freedom was at this time described as having “its left leg in plaster, its right arm in a sling a patch over the left eye, deafness in the right ear, a sprained ankle and a number of teeth knocked out” (Joel Merwis, 1979, in Berger 2004).

In redressing the historic imbalances caused by the apartheid policies, government saw it necessary to free the airwaves by delegating media regulation to independent bodies. This was and still is a way of ensuring democracy in the media sector. The telecommunications Green paper stipulates that, “telecoms is an important means of building democracy by giving citizens access to the information and telecommunications services that enable them to participate effectively in the decision-making process of society,” thus the formation of SATRA to guard against government interference.

ICASA and the MDDA also work hand-in-hand to ensure that “the central public interest principle in broadcasting is that of universal access, that there is a diverse range of language, religious, and cultural programming,” (MDDA, 2005). One can conclude and say the independent regulators are working towards harmonising dysfunctions; which can include opportunities for small media companies, challenges or problems around media policies to improve the functioning of broadcasting media as a whole.

Why Do Women Lose Interest In Nice Guys?

You first meet a woman whom you are really interested in, plucked up the courage to start an amazing conversation with her and then she even agrees to go out on a date with you! You are really happy as it seems as though your luck is changing when it comes to your romantic life, and so you do everything you hear women saying what they would like a guy to do for them: taking her out to nice restaurants, buying her things and showering her with compliments and so on. But then… something happens, She stops returning your call, she starts becoming distant and she says the words guys would not want to hear: “I like you more as a friend.”

Does that sound all too familiar to you? But you probably hate it more when she ends up being with another jerk or ‘badboy’ just 2 weeks later! So why did she lose interest in you in the first place?

First of all, you have to got to realize that being nice is not equivalent to being attractive. A woman’s attraction instinct is genetically programmed to guide her towards a man who will meet her basic need for safety and security. Most women say otherwise because this all comes really naturally and they probably aren’t even aware of this fact. If you doubt this to be true, just look for a woman who is attracted to a man who seems to be a slightly obnoxious ‘jerk’, and ask her what she actually sees in him. I am sure that 90 % of the time her answers won’t even make any sense at all, and sometimes she might even tell you she’s not even exactly sure herself!

So why would she still want to be with him? The reason is simple, because that guy is able to make her feel safe and secure, and that makes him really attractive to her. Of course this doesn’t mean that women are attracted to men who are disrespectful and men who mistreat them.

So how do you actually strip yourself of that ‘nice guy’ title and yet not be a complete jerk? It’s really simple yet difficult at the same time, as it would take a lot of self-analysis to be able to do so. Most of your guy friends probably would be clueless when it come to these things, and of course it would be even more pointless to seek your female counterparts for help. You just need to realize when you are treating women differently from the way you would treat a normal person, treating them as though they are of a higher social value, and stop doing that! That’s really all there is to it.