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Saturday, January 21, 2017

2nd Chance Prom Boerner Botanical Gardens

2nd Chance Prom Boerner Botanical Gardens

Monday, January 9, 2017

Those Old-Time Values

By Aaron S. Robertson

Now, I can’t always name ‘em all off the top of my head, but I just know ‘em when I see ‘em. Those old-time values. Here are a few of ‘em:

1) Hard work

2) Truly understanding the value of hard work (see #1)

3) Decency

4) Paying your bills

5) Cleaning your plate (that’s why ol’ Aaron can afford to lose a few pounds, hehe)

6) Appreciating what you have

7) Using the local greasy spoon diner as a hub for community news, making new friends, keeping old friends, and getting a mighty-fine breakfast served with a little ol' fashioned TLC

8) Cleaning your plate at the local greasy spoon diner and tipping your servers at least 20% (see #6)

9) Drinking coffee throughout the day and night like it’s water, preferably black

10) Desiring to see your country return to being a manufacturing empire and once again supplying the world with heavy equipment and high-quality parts, instead of us just serving each other cups of coffee and pizzas.

11) Put down the fuckin’ cell phone, stop texting, and try connecting with another human being face-to-face.

There you have it. Those old-time values.

If you enjoyed this post, you may also like the post, #workinglivesmatter

#workinglivesmatter

By Aaron S. Robertson

The only lives that matter are John Q. Lunchpail and Susie Q. Lunchpail, and they encompass every color, creed, sexual orientation, size, shape, accent, and racial and ethnic slur known to our country. John Q. Lunchpail and Susie Q. Lunchpail toil day in and day out to keep our country running. I'm striking it out on my own and creating a new hashtag, and I dare to boldly proclaim that #workinglivesmatter.

#workinglivesmatter


They're black cops and white NBA players. They're the stereotypical Jewish doctor and Irish laborer, and vice-versa! They're Muslim executives and Christian construction workers. They're straight and LGBTQ+. They're married with children, they're married without children, and they're childless bachelors and bachelorettes. They're single parents working hard and just trying to do right by their children, and they have jumbo-sized nuclear families. Perhaps they're retired now, or disabled, or just looking to keep busy, so they're working by volunteering - they're sharing their expertise, stories, talents, and good company with others. Perhaps they're still in their working prime and volunteering every moment that they're not at their paying jobs, simply because they love helping others and have a vision for this world. They're stay-at-home parents, working hard to ensure their children grow up right. They're working in comfortable offices and in loud and oily factories. They're helping those that genuinely can't help themselves.

#workinglivesmatter

Work, in all its forms, whether for monetary compensation or not, unites us all, lifts us up, cleanses our souls, and will continue to drive our country and our world forward. #workinglivesmatter .

If you enjoyed this post, you may also like the post, Those Old-Time Values.   

 

Sunday, January 8, 2017

Milwaukee Events and Happenings

Check out this recently-created group on Facebook to share your Milwaukee -area events, fun happenings, specials, business news, charitable and service club efforts, classes and workshops, neighborhood and subdivision rummage sales, and a lot more!

It is a public group, and anyone can become a member. Use this Facebook group to share everything great that Milwaukee and the surrounding area has to offer:

https://www.facebook.com/groups/MilwaukeeEvents
 

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

A Review of a Qualitative Study on Culture in Business

Author's note: The following is a paper prepared as part of a course taken for his pursuit of a Ph.D. through Milwaukee's Cardinal Stritch University.

Copyright 2016, Aaron Scott Robertson. All rights reserved.

A Review of a Qualitative Study on Culture in Business
Aaron S. Robertson, MSM
December, 2016


Abstract

The paper offers a critique of the article, “Organizational culture – a factor of potential positive influence on the collectivities of any organization,” written by Ramona-Andreea Mihalache and Ruxandra-Gabriela Albu, both of Transilvania University of Brasov, and appearing in a 2016 issue of the Bulletin of the Transilvania University of Brasov, Series I: Engineering Sciences. The article discussed is a qualitative study exploring the subject of culture in business, having implored interviews as the research method to compare the organizational cultures of two Romanian companies.

Keywords: organizational culture, culture, Romania, House of Dracula Hotel, Pentalog Romania, qualitative research, semi-directive interview

Introduction

This paper offers a critique of the article, “Organizational culture – a factor of potential positive influence on the collectivities of any organization,” authored by Ramona-Andreea Mihalache and Ruxandra-Gabriela Albu, both of Transilvania University of Brasov. It appeared in a 2016 issue of the Bulletin of the Transilvania University of Brasov, Series I: Engineering Sciences. The article, a qualitative study weighing in at eight pages and exploring the subject of culture as it relates to business, is analyzed primarily through the lens of validity. However, this author, who is devoting his dissertation to culture in business, as well, will have some additional thoughts to contribute to the discussion.

Analysis

For their study, Mihalache and Albu conducted six interviews between two Romanian companies operating in the service industry: Pentalog Romania, a provider of information technology (IT) services, and the House of Dracula Hotel, a major tourist attraction (Mihalache and Albu, 2016). More specifically, “The research method was the semi-structured interview, the in-depth semi-directive interview” (Mihalache and Albu, 2016, p. 151). All of the interviewees were in various positions of management at the respective organizations studied. Additionally, all interviews were audio recorded, but that appears to be all of the details provided, as far as an audit trail, or lack thereof, is concerned.

The article begins with various definitions and observations of organizational culture, most notably from Schein (1992) and Nicolescu, Androniceanu, and Nastase (2000). The theoretical framework chosen for the study is the Denison model. According to the researchers of the study, “The four cultural features measured in the Denison model are: Mission, Consistency, Involvement, and Adaptability. Each of these features is divided into three divisions – cultural indexes” (Mihalache and Albu, 2016, p. 150). Themes gathered from the interviews are divided between the two organizations in a neat, presentable format, with a number of the findings between the two companies similar in nature.

For his own dissertation, as previously stated, this author is researching the subject of culture in business, as well. So, from this standpoint, this author has found this article to be somewhat useful and insightful for his own work. There is certainly value here for his own research. However, this author believes that more could have been done.

To start with, a total of just six interviews were conducted between the two organizations that were looked at in the study. Why six? For this author, six interviews, at first glance, seems like very little, but then again, he humbly admits that he has a lot more to learn. Perhaps he is also simply and unconsciously comparing the number of interviews completed for this study to what he knows about quantitative research. Even the researchers of the study acknowledge that, “…the sample size was low…” (Mihalache and Albu, 2016, p. 152), but, to their credit, and in all fairness, they also add that, “…but the amount of information provided by respondents was very high” (Mihalache and Albu, 2016, p. 152).

Furthermore, the questions are begged, why interviews? Why not another form of qualitative research, such as focus groups or field observations? Were any other methods considered? These questions are not addressed in the article, and again, there really is no discussion on the interview process, other than to say that they were audio recorded. Are the recordings still preserved and safely kept somewhere? Are there space limitations imposed by the publishing journal that may have kept some of these details out of the article? If so, this may certainly explain the absence of some of these key details.

Finally, from this author’s perspective, it would have been beneficial if perhaps a third, and even quite possibly a fourth, company was included in the study, to add further validity to it. More specifically, the two organizations that were examined are both in the service industry. Perhaps a business in the manufacturing sector would have served to round this study out more nicely. If this could not be achieved for whatever reason, then, at the very least, a third or even fourth type of business in the service industry, service certainly being a very broad term that covers a lot of ground, would have also served to round the study out in a fuller, richer way. It appears to this author that the researchers of this study may have been seeking to paint broad strokes to begin with, that is to say, to attempt to find some common, overarching, universal themes when it comes to culture, and so expanding their study to include additional organizations would have certainly achieved this aim, if this is what the researchers were really looking to do.

In any case, as noted prior, this author still certainly finds some value in this study for his own research on the subject of culture in business. Until recently, he had been heavily considering a quantitative approach to his dissertation, or, at the very least, weighing a mixed methods study, as he certainly sees and understands the value in qualitative research, as well. After reviewing this article and completing a course on qualitative research methods, however, the pendulum has swung the other way, and he is now giving serious consideration to a purely qualitative study. For this author, the subject of culture involves too many emotional, psychological, and other elements that a quantitative approach, in his view, would have too difficult a time attempting to get to the root of and do the study true justice.

Conclusion

In closing, this author has some concerns with validity in regards to how Mihalache and Albu (2016) conducted their study on culture in business by examining the organizational cultures of two companies in Romania utilizing the qualitative research approach of conducting interviews. However, this author also acknowledges that he still has a lot to learn about research methods, as well, and it is certainly important to point this out. In the end, he has still found this study to hold value for his own work on culture in business.

Bibliography

Denison, D.R. & Neal, W.S. (2000). Denison organizational culture survey: Facilitator guide. Ann Arbor, MI: Denison Consulting LLC.

Mihalache, R., & Albu, R. (2016). Organizational culture - a factor of potential positive influence on the collectivities of any organization. Bulletin of the Transilvania University of Brasov, Series I: Engineering Sciences, 9(1), 149-156.

Nicolescu, O., Androniceanu, A., & Nastase, M. (2000). Sisteme, metode si tehnici managerialeale organizatiei. Bucuresti: Editura Economica.

Schein, E. (1992). Organizational culture and leadership. San Franciso: Jossey-Bass.

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Donald Trump Rally Wisconsin State Fair Park West Allis

By Aaron S. Robertson

I thought to myself, "What the hell? Why not?", when I clicked on the link on now president-elect Donald J. Trump's campaign Web site to request a media credential for his rally last night at Wisconsin State Fair Park in West Allis. I knew I had a 50/50 chance. And I ended up getting approved. For a small, independent blog like mine, whose latest illustrious posts include talking up a local storage unit vendor, me buying a nearly 30-year-old luxury car because of a childhood fascination with the mob, and some dude installing E-15 fuel pumps at his chain of convenience centers in the area, this was really the jackpot! And we are very grateful for it.

In addition to myself, I was also able to get in at the last minute two good friends of mine who served as my assistants for the evening. It was a blast with Noah Stovich and Eddie Bettinger, and we did not hide the fact that this little, independent media outlet is staunchly pro-Trump, as evidenced by this video and photo:

video
Trump Rally West Allis

Now, we weren't quite as cool as Milo and gang in the following video, but we still thought we were sort of cool. Milo (Milo Yiannopoulos, of Breitbart), by the way, was also in town last night by coincidence (or was it?), appearing at UW-Milwaukee as part of his Dangerous Faggot Tour (he is openly gay). His speech last night for UW-Milwaukee was entitled, "Master Baiters: The Liberals Keeping America’s Race War Alive."



UPDATE: Here is Milo's talk at UW-Milwaukee last night:



What follows in bold here are a number of Facebook posts I was able to fire off during the rally:

Crowd getting fired up and ready to go. Sheriff Clarke just spoke. Congressman Sean Duffy speaking now. From the press stand. MilwaukeeBusinessOpportunities.com . December 13 at 6:13pm.

Trump Rally Wisconsin State Fair Park

Crowdgoers angry at CNN. December 13 at 6:56pm.

Trump Crowd Hates CNN

The man of the hour is on. December 13 at 7:21pm.

"We are going to say, 'Merry Christmas' again." Donald J. Trump. December 13 at 7:23pm.

Ryan getting mixed reactions. Cheering and booing. But Trump calls him "a fine wine." Everyday, he says, "I appreciate his genius more and more." December 13 at 7:27pm.

Crowd turning on media, looking up at us on the platform. Little do they know my humble media outlet, MilwaukeeBusinessOpportunities.com, is with them! We are filling the void of Breitbart on the platform. I am an uglier version of Milo. December 13 at 7:54pm.

[Aaron's note since posting this one: I should have noted here, in case any females decide to finally take notice of me, that I'm also a straighter version of Milo.]

Crowd still turning on media. These wholesome, hardworking crowd goers don't know that we are with them. As one of my assistants tonight, Noah Stovich, told me just now, good thing there is security standing all around us. December 13 at 8:04pm.

Tools of the trade. December 13 at 8:20pm.


This one was just a stand-alone photo without a caption by me. December 13 at 8:50pm.

Chinese-Americans Love Trump

And then somewhere in between posting all of this on my personal Facebook profile, I found the time to post this gem from Classical Art Memes. December 13 at 6:44pm.


Here are a couple of Tweets I did after I got home. Mr. Trump managed to get the crowd fired up against the media (hence a couple of my Facebook posts above) when he said that 70,000 factories had been closed across the country - a number, he said, that must be true, because no one has corrected him on it (meaning, of course, the media). The crowd turned toward the media platform and began booing and heckling all of us on it, as Noah, Eddie, and myself just stood there laughing our asses off. Little did they know...

: Little did u know, 1 media outlet *ardently* in ur corner tonight on that platform in :


: Our *ardently* pro-Trump outlet on platform tonight at the rally. We're with .

Trump Rally Wisconsin State Fair Park

After the rally, as folks started heading out and we were packing up our stuff, a gentleman approached the three of us to tell us, "You know the media thing was all in fun, right?" We talked with him briefly, shared a couple of laughs, and told him we're strongly pro-Trump. I don't think he was quite convinced when he walked away.

Stay tuned for more as we compile a collection of some of our best photos of the evening, along with additional thoughts and material...

UPDATE: Here is video footage of the entire program:



Did you attend the Donald Trump rally at the Wisconsin State Fair grounds on December 13? If so, what are your thoughts? Share your observations and opinions in the Comments section below.

Sunday, November 27, 2016

AAA Tess Corners Storage

A customer review of AAA Tess Corners Storage

By Aaron S. Robertson

I never rented a storage unit before, but all of that changed when I just purchased my 1988 Lincoln Tow Car from Holz Motors up the road in Hales Corners, and suddenly, I found myself needing a storage unit for the winter.

After looking and asking around a bit, I ultimately turned to AAA Tess Corners Storage, located in the Tess Corners neighborhood of the city of Muskego, and I'm glad I did. AAA Tess Corners is one of the area's few independent (non-big chain) storage places around, and its owner, Steve, is a true gentleman.

Steve went over in fine detail his pricing structure, his overall process, payment deadlines and potential penalties, etc. He gave me a tour of the facility. I could tell he wanted me to fully understand everything and feel comfortable before agreeing to sign a contract. He wanted me to be able to make an informed decision, even if that meant going somewhere else in the end. I didn't have anyone else available at the moment to come along with me to park the car for the winter, so Steve helped me park it, and even gave me a ride home. Now that's customer service!

If you have a storage need, look into AAA Tess Corners Storage, of Muskego. They come highly-recommended by me.

AAA Tess Corners Storage
W145 S6550 Tess Corners Drive
Muskego, WI 53150
(414) 213-3240
http://www.muskegostorage.com