Category Archives: Ethics

2nd Chances

As an African American male I understand the stigma that society can place on you without a record.  I can only imagine how it views you once you have one.  Most people say once  man has gone to jail it’s likely he will end back up there.  One of the main reasons is that he can’t find a job because he’s a ex-convict.  So what is a guy to do.  Well there is one group out there that is giving ex-cons (please tell me if that’s politically incorrect) a second chance.  And their aptly named Second Chance Enterprises.  They hire ex-cons to run their businesses.  I have heard a lot of people don’t like the idea, but I think it’s great.  What do you guys think?

Here is a story on their Restaurant Business….

http://www.todaysthv.com/news/local/story.aspx?storyid=120080&catid=2

http://2ndchanceenterprises.com/

You are Rude and Selfish…

Today is a repost from gregsavage.com.au.  I will have to admit this didn’t offend me, but it did make me think about myself and how rude I have been.  I apologize to any of you who have had to deal with my rudeness.  😉

http://gregsavage.com.au/2010/06/07/no-you-are-not-%E2%80%98running-late%E2%80%99-you-are-rude-and-selfish/

This post may offend some readers, recruiters or not. But only because it’s going to cut close to the bone for many.

And I don’t care if I sound old-fashioned, because actually it’s nothing to do with ‘fashion’ or ‘generation’. It’s got everything to do with basic good manners and respect for other people.

So here goes… How did it get to be “OK” for people to be late for everything?

Because as far as I am concerned, it’s not OK.

In recent years it seems that a meeting set to start at 9 am, for some people means in the general vicinity of any time which starts with the numeral ‘9’. Like 9.30 for example.

People drift in at 9.10 or 9.20, or even later. And they smile warmly at the waiting group, as they unwrap their bacon sandwich, apparently totally unconcerned that others have been there since five to nine, prepared and ready to start.

10 people kept waiting in a meeting for 20 minutes, while some selfish pratt who idles his way via the coffee shop, is actually 20 minutes times 10, which is 200 minutes wasted – while you keep us waiting because you did not catch the earlier bus. That is over 3 hours wasted. By you! How much has that cost the business? Shall I send you an invoice?

And an arrangement to meet someone for a business meeting at a coffee shop at 3 pm, more often than not means at 3.10 you get a text saying ‘I am five minutes away’ which inevitably means 10 minutes, and so you wait for 15 or 20 minutes, kicking your heels in frustration.

And often these ‘latecomers’ are people who have requested the meeting in the first place, are asking for your help, or are selling something. Fat chance mate!

And of course this has massive application to the recruitment industry, where lateness is both commonplace and hugely damaging to your personal and corporate brand.

And it’s not only business.

Why do people, invited for a dinner party at 7.30, think its cool to arrive at 8.30? It’s rude. It’s inconsiderate. And it’s selfish, as I witnessed in a coffee shop near my home one weekend. Three “ladies who lunch” (a species not confined to, but heavily represented on, the lower North Shore of Sydney) were chatting loudly at the table next to me. One inquired what time the ‘drinks do’ was that night. The reply for all the world to hear was ‘Oh 7.30, but we won’t get there till 9 because by then it will have warmed up and all the interesting people will have arrived’. Nice. Imagine if everyone took that view. Cocktail parties would start at 3 am eventually.

Or a dinner at a restaurant where I was meeting two other couples. My wife was away, so I was flying solo. I arrived at two minutes to eight for an eight o’clock booking. At 8.20, I was into my second glass of Pinot and at half-past I got a text saying ‘on the way’. We finally were all seated at 8.45. There were not even attempted excuses from either of the two couples, who seemed oblivious to the fact I might actually have got there at the agreed time. Meanwhile I had put a huge dent in the bottle of Pinot, and was ready to go home.

And it is not that we lead ‘busy lives’. That’s a given, we all do, and it’s a cop out to use that as an excuse. It’s simply that some people no longer even pretend that they think your time is as important as theirs. And technology makes it worse. It seems texting or emailing that you are late somehow means you are no longer late.

Rubbish.

You are rude. And inconsiderate.

And I act on it to. My dentist kept me waiting 50 minutes not long ago. I walked out, past a literally open-mouthed receptionist who had never seen a patient act on their frustration, only to get a frantic call from the dentist herself as I got into my car.

Sure she was “busy”, another patient took longer than she expected, blah blah.

But hold on, I am busy too! I would not keep her waiting 45 minutes if she came to see me as a candidate. And yet I am HER customer. I told her I have been coming to you for 15 years but don’t take me for granted. See fewer patients in a day if you have to, but see me on time or close to it. She has never kept me waiting again.

Me? Am I ever late? Sure, sometimes. That’s inevitable even with the best intentions. But I never plan to be late. I never ‘let time slide’ because my stuff is more important than yours.

I am not talking about the odd occasion of lateness. I am talking about people who are routinely late. In fact, never on time. You know who I am talking about!

And certainly I consider serial lateness a character flaw which I take into account when working out who to promote, who to hire and who to count amongst my real friends.

It’s that important.

My fellow nerds are you guilty of being rude and selfish?  Is it really being rude and selfish?

Growing Out of the Club

Night At The Roxbury 225x300 Growing Out of the Club

You know… at some point, in life, you have to grow up.  There are certain people you have to disassociate with, and certain places, where said people congregate, that you have to stop going to.  One of these places is the club.

I’m not talking about being uppity.  It’s not that you went and got that certificate from ITT, and now you wanna go acting all brand new.  No, you simply have to grow up.  As you continue to grow, mature, and move up in life, your future gets brighter.  You have goals.  You have aspirations.  Some people have families to take care of.  It’s not that you’re too good to certain places.  You just have a future, and don’t want to throw it away by putting yourself in certain situations that can be avoided.

One of these situations is the club.

But what constitutes an establishment as “the club?”  Glad you asked…

1) You can wear Jordans and get in.

2) When you leave at 3:00 A.M., you smell like kush, Newports, and malt liquor.

3) “Down For My N***as,” by C-Murdah, is still in regular rotation there.

4) C-Murdah himself, and his look-a-likes, are still in regular rotation there.

5) The women have tattoos… on their faces.

These types of places may have been fun when you were younger.  They’re cheap to get in.  The drinks are cheap.  You can still pick up a woman wearing FUBU Platinum.  But as you continue to grow, then chances are you want to be around and socialize with like-minded people.  Chances are you would want to talk to a woman with standards higher than clean Air Force One’s and Coogi.  You also wouldn’t want to put yourself in situations where you end up getting robbed or going to jail (because you got in a fight stepping on some random dude’s Pumas) on some bull.

What do you think?  What are some other characteristics of “the club?”

What Have You Learned?

As we grow older, a lot of things we once valued aren’t as valuable to us as they once were.  The way we thought the world works isn’t exactly how the world works. Is it that we have lost faith, or do we just see things for how they really are?

Being popular is more important than being smart… how silly of me.

Having things is more important than having assets… how silly of me.

Not realizing every mistake or sin is fear-based… how silly of me.

Trying to change people rather than being the change I want to see… how silly of me.

What have you realized that you have been silly of?  How do you see the world now compared to when you were 18?  21?

*The soundtrack for today’s post is, “How Silly of Me,” by artist 607 (one half of the duo, earFear).  You can hear more here.

Ethics Questions: Volume 1

Soooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo…

You’re at the club…

Okay, maybe clubs aren’t your thing.

But, for the sake of argument, let’s just say you’re at the club.

You walk around.  You’re having a good time.  You decide to hit the dance floor… upon which you witness the following (WARNING:  Turn your speakers down.  This video contains profanity):

What do you do?  How do you react?

Drop a comment…

– SouthernCharm

The South Shall Rise Again!

image5518423g The South Shall Rise Again!

When I was in college, there was a dorm at my school called Confederate Memorial Hall.   Most of the time it was just called Confederate Hall, which I don’t need to tell you caused many a black people to look like the way Three Six Mafia described Chinese women’s vaginas.  It’s just something about the word “Confederate” that brings in thoughts of Kunta Kinte, and him being whipped into the name Toby. The reason for the name, Confederate Memorial Hall, was it was funded by the Daughters of the the Confederacy (DOC) as a memorial to the fallen soldiers of the Confederacy.

Well because of public outcry, the dorm’s name was changed to Memorial Hall. This was done without the DOC’s knowledge, and they sued (rightfully so).  Well Vandy was a little smart.  The university changed the name in all publications, but left the name on the building facade.  They didn’t want to have to give UDC back  the $50, 000 that was given to fund the dorm 72 years ago… Which in today’s dollars converts to about $2.2 million… or about a year’s tuition for one student …J/K…only a little.  🙁

While I was in college, I followed the crowd on this one which was, “Screw them!  They made us slaves!”  Well now I have to go back on that previous idea.  Although slavery was a huge part of the Confederacy, I understand there were numerous other issues that caused that war.  And those men, at the time, died for their country fighting for what they believed in.   And if their people want to pay for a memorial for that, then I have to say that is all good to me… BUT…We have to see both sides of that:  The dark and the light.  Sadly, in most wars that are fought, only the winner gets to decide who was right.  I’m sure if the South had won, the North would have the same problems with memorials.

“Treason is all a matter of dates ” – From the Movie the Count of Monte Cristo.

I’ll add to that it’s a matter of outcome as well.

But I say all that to keep my topic in perspective.

VA Gov.  Bob McDonnell made the declaration that April will be “Confederate History Month”.  Now I can see where people would have a problem with this.  But let’s be clear (In my Obama voice)…  I think it is just as wrong not to have a Confederate History month as it is to not to have Black History Month.  He did it for a clear reason.  He wanted to honor the past and boost tourism for the state.  I don’t have a problem with that.  But here is my problem Bob…

How dare you not cite the roll of slavery?  Now Bob I don’t have a problem with you honoring your people, but don’t you dare not tell the whole truth.  Keep it real son!

I think Martin Luther King was one of the greatest men to walk the Earth.  We honor him as well as all black pioneers during Black History month.  But let’s be honest.  MLK smoked, and he messed around with other women.  That’s the truth, and we would do ourselves a disservice not to tell the whole truth no matter how ugly it is.

I’m probably thinking too much on this one when I think about Bob’s merits.  (Which I tend to do)  But to me that is very careless and mildly racist.

So I don’t have any problem with what you do.  I say leave the name Confederate Memorial Hall.  I say have your Confederate Month.  But don’t forget my heritage in the process.

Wood has Spoken.

-Trillionaire Wood

Haiti Earthquake = God’s Will?

 

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, or your George  W. Bush circa 2005 Hurricane Katrina your life has been enveloped in the crisis in Haiti…

Well of course you’re getting hit from all sides on this tragedy. 

Some people say don’t give because we are already giving money through income tax.

Some people say give because it’s right the right thing to do.

If there is an opinion on this issue, it has been voiced.  And you have had a chance to weigh in on it.

But I must say their are two opinions that seems to pull me in every time.

 One made by Pat Robertson of the 700 Club.  Mr. Robertson has said on his show…

“Something happened a long time ago in Haiti and people might not want to talk about it,” the televangelist said. “And they got together and swore a pact to the Devil. They said, ‘We will serve you if you’ll get us free from the French.’ True story. And so the Devil said, ‘Okay, it’s a deal.’ . . . But ever since they have been cursed by one thing after another.”

So basically he’s saying they are cursed for what they did.  I’m not a fan of this comment because it’s based on speculative history.

But this is the one that really got me.

Rev. Eric Toussaint while addressing his congregation is quoted as saying…

“Why give thanks to God? Because we are here,” “What happened is the will of God.”

Now I could be totally misreading his  quotes and he may be saying that them surviving was the will of God, but it seems like he is saying the earthquake was the will of God.  That is about as believable as the plot for the movie Legion.

I have to say I’m totally in disagreement with both men.  I don’t believe that God goes around handing out punishment like water.  God loves us.  You can’t tell me in one breath God would give his only son so that the world be saved then go around killing people because he was angry with you or you made a pack with the devil.

What do you guys think?  Was the earthquake the will of God? 

-Trillionaire Wood

Attraction-Harassment Scale

nice guy bad guy Attraction Harassment Scale

 So you are at work, and Jimmy the office “nice guy” comes over to say good morning.  This is probably the hardest part of your day.  Now Jimmy’s a good guy, but you’re just not attracted to him.  And he usually lingers a little too long when he hugs you.  Well one day Jimmy takes your kind hug as his entry into trying something a little further.  Maybe he decides to tell you, “you look really nice” or “he wants to take you on a date”.  Now if you are a rational creature you will tell him politely no and hopefully it doesn’t ruin the office place acquaintance.  Or you could be crazy as a loon and call sexual harassment on him. 

 Then you have Kent.  Kent is the office Brad Pitt/Hottie/Slut.  Well one night you and Kent are working late and he decides he’s going to try to have his way with you.  Next thing you know, the copy machine is taking full color photos of your neither region.

 Now how is it that possible that two of your co-workers can approach in two different ways and get inexplicable results?  One guy almost gets a face full of pepper spray while being respectful and the other gets a chance to make a fond memory at the copy machine by treating you like dirt. 

 Well it’s a little thing I like to call the Attraction-Harassment scale. 

 Note: Don’t try to take it.  It’s already copyrighted.

  Attraction Harassment Scale

  

 There is basically an inverse relationship between how attracted you are to a person and how you gauge their actions towards you. 

 In other words… The uglier a person is to you, the less you will let them get away with. 

 It is derived from the Crazy-Hot scale from the show How I Met Your Mother?.  I love that show.  Barney Stinson for President!

 You see it all the time in your daily life…

1. Regular dude sends a drink.  Girl takes it and pays him no mind.  Rich guy sends a bottle.  Girl goes home with rich guy.

2. Girl attracted to a guy plays hard to get, and guy engages her in said game.  Girl not attracted to guy “pursuing” claims he’s a bug-a-boo/stalker.

 So give me an example of your Attraction-Harassment episodes.  Do you think the scale is right?

“Spare the Rod, Spoil the Child”?

spanking Spare the Rod, Spoil the Child?

In black culture it is a widely accepted practice to spank children.  Heck it’s a cornerstone of rearing. (rearing and spanking…lol…get it…Ba dum Ching.  Thank you ladies and gentlemen I’ll be here all week.)

There is always the quote…

“Spare the rod, Spoil the child.”

Now I’m not here to say that spanking children is wrong, but I do wonder sometime do we use that as a first resort or a last when disciplining our children. 

I can count the number of times I’ve been spanked in my life, and none of them were really bad.  I was just acting up, and it was time to lay down the law.  My mother got me early in life so that I would know better later on.  Later on, all she had to do was make a little threat and I was back to Angelic Wood.  

I can vividly remember going on a church trip to Dallas.  As the bus was about to leave Dallas, we decided (me and some other kids) to go exploring around the hotel.  Well needless to say when our moms found us it wasn’t pretty.  It was like watching Leonidas and the Spartans beat on the Immortals…lol  But I didn’t get spanked with them.  I thought I had gotten away.  Then… I felt this sharp pain in my back.  It almost felt like my back had caved in.  Well my mother had took her right hand, reached down into the pit of “The Hot Gates”, and brought back a hit that would knock a full grown gorilla to the ground.  Needless to say, lesson learned.  When it was time to go, it was time to go…lol

On the other side, I have cousins and friends that I feel got spanked daily and they didn’t fair so well in life. 

I really liked the show “My Wife and Kids”.  You never saw Michael Kyle raise his hands to any of the children, but he got his point across.  He used creative strategies to not only punish, but to make his kids understand why he did the things he did.  He would get carried away sometimes, but I thought it was an ingenious way to not physically harm his kids. 

Here is an interesting article on spanking and how people try reference the bible to say it’s okay.

So my fellow nerds what say you?  Is spanking okay?  Is it a last resort?  Is it a first resort?

BTW if you have never seen Sinbad’s HBO special at morehouse, I implore you to find it.  His routine on spanking is one of the funniest things I’ve ever seen in my life…lol

-Trillionaire Wood aka Wood the Great

N!gga, You Ain’t Gangsta!!!

02493ahiqs7n7jzv6dd N!gga, You Aint Gangsta!!!

My partner in business, Southern Charm, wrote a post a couple of weeks back about Birdman and Lil’ Wayne and their affiliation with the Suu Woo nation.

Read it here 

In a nut shell he was saying that Birdman may be a gangsta, but at the end of the day it’s all about money.

Which brings me to my picture of the line up.  It’s safe to say that it represents a fair sampling of the most popular rappers out there.  And it’s also safe to say that these guys generally have very violent lyrics and talk about a life that is probably not true.

Rick Ross: Former Correctional Officer and College Graduate

Lil Wayne:  Was in College.  Now instead of Penn State he’s headed to the State Pen. And rumor has it that he never started cussing until he was 18.

Plies:  Have you heard the interview.  OMG!  This negro has better grammar that Cornell West…lol

T.I.:  Owns a construction company with his uncle.

Young Jeezy:  This cat may actually be gangsta.  I’ve never heard anything to the contrary.

But 1 out of 5 is not a good %. 

So why do they act that way?  Well duh!!!  It’s for the money.  I get that.  But my question becomes does life imitate art or does art imitate life?  And I really think it’s a cyclical thing.

I’m a grown man.  And in the past I have watched BET and have become desensitized to reality.  So for an impressionable youth, it is possible for them to watch a video, listen to a song, and believe that the song is actually real life.

So this is how I see rise of the Hip Hop Gangsta:  Groups like NWA come out.  They make money.  People listen to them and get desensitized to violence.  Now the record company sees it makes money and they have 100 new acts working the formula.  More people become desensitized.  Then people like Lil Wayne come along that don’t even rap like that.  But they want to work the formula.  So now Lil Wayne and the whole lot are gangsta.  Then I think what happens is these people begin to believe the bull they are peddling.  Birth to a Hip Hop gangsta.  Next thing you know he is being busted for having drugs and weapons. Which I’m almost convinced is a ploy by they higher ups to continue to paint the image. 

N!gga you not gangsta!

So the questions I pose to you…  Should these guys be censored?  Should they be allowed to rap and keep spreading the nonsense?  Is it the parents fault when kids act out the songs and videos? Is it cool to be gansta?

 

-Trillionaire Wood