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Getting A+ is very difficult in EN105A

posted 16 May 2010, 22:40 by Roderick Chia   [ updated 17 May 2010, 03:49 by NTC EN105 ]

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When I listened to this song and read the lyrics, I was asking myself how many of my students would ever understand why I needed to be strict and being hard on my comments. While the comments might sound harsh, I had to be sure that the students knew that those were comments that were to be taken seriously rather than as passing remarks.

I remembered, while in army days during my specialist training, my instructor told me one thing that was engraved into my brain permanently; "the best welfare for your men is the strictest training because if they loss their life during war, it is due to your leniency."

This is the last module for the Minor in Entrepreneurship and I have the responsibility to ensure that all of you know what are waiting for you in your life out there.
It is hard to get A+ for EN105A not because I'm purposely making it difficult for the sake of doing so. It is so because I don't want to end up giving force impression that entrepreneurship is an easy thing. I need this module to reflect as close to reality as possible. The world out there is more cruel than me.  Making it close to reality also means that I have to put in more effort on my part beyond what an instructor is tasked to do. Perhaps it will helps for learning that I put some rationale for why I make certain decision and what is the expected learning points:
  1. Why I make you blog at least once every fortnight?
    • It is all about discipline. Most entrepreneurs are lack of discipline, which limit their growth during growth stage. A company of certain size needs structure and operating procedure. Staff needs to be discipline to follow basic instructions. While staff needs to report to managers regularly, managers need to report to management and management needs to report to shareholders and investors. 
    • Reporting is the key to give everyone comfort that things are moving in right direction, while supervisor can provides support when seeing that things are not going well.
  2. Why conduct business plan presentation using blog?
    • I need to make sure all are comfortable using the blog site so that they will update regularly. 
    • In the past, students took very long to get the blog site updated. But this round, I can see that after forcing the use of blog through business plan presentation and by providing sample structure, processes are streamlined and operations are more smooth.
  3. 21st century communications.
    • I used to get feedback from students that they had hard time getting common time for meeting, as such progress delayed. This kind of excuse is totally not acceptable. 
    • There are so many ways to have meeting without seeing face! With speaker phone in almost all mobile phone, it is always possible to put someone on speaker phone while having meeting.  It can also be done such that everyone is on conference call.  Multi-party conference call using mobile phone is easy to setup as well. 
    • One common way of meeting via internet tool is using messaging. MSN Messaging or Google Chat is my favourite tool for such purpose. You can easily have meeting even if some members are overseas. Basically, with 21st century communications, there is no reason for  not having meeting regularly.
To allow students to learn how to have effective meeting via messaging tool, I have decided that the next consultation shall be done via messaging!!

Instruction will be provided in due time. Stay tune!