Ontario’s Anti-Racism Directorate Officially aligns with the United Nations’ Decade for People of African Descent

23 Feb

Recently Ontario’s Anti-Racism Directorate issued a news release, ‘Ontario Recognizing the United Nations’ Decade for People of African Descent‘. I had not heard about this entity or United Nations (UN) initiative before seeing this press release I wanted to learn more. It is a positive step by the provincial government to address a significant issue affecting the black community.

The Anti-Racism Directorate started during Black History month in 2016, and it has the mandate to protect the people of Ontario from racism. It is interesting to note that this directorate starts 20 years after all of Canada first officially celebrated Black History Month. There has been much work done in support of the black community, yet there seems there appears to be a lot still to do. The recent Brexit vote in Europe and the immigration ban in the US provide an indication of the international climate which does not seem favorable for visible minorities. I am grateful to live in a country like Canada and work at a company like TD that appreciates diversity and continues to explore ways to improve how they address diversity-related issues.

About one year after coming into being the directorate is now aligning with the United Nations’ Decade for People of African Descent. The decade spans from 2015 to 2024. A lot is happening in the black community around the time of Black History Month. The International Decade for the People of African Descent has clearly defined objectives and programme of activities. These objectives encourage countries to safeguard people of colour, share their contributions to their societies and build up the legal structures based on previous work done globally against racism. Canada is supportive of this UN initiative as the Directorate collaborated with the United Nations’ Working Group of Experts on People of African Descent last year when this group made a 5-day visit to Canada between October 17 to 21, 2016. I am looking forward to seeing their report when it comes out in September 2017. I am interested in learning their thoughts on some of the things we are doing well and hopefully seeing some recommendations for gaining improvements.

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Assess Subprime Credits with the Thought of Social Obligation and Measure to Prevent Recurrence

20 Jun

Lack of social responsibility led to the subprime loan crisis. If the ‘actors’ were more socially responsible, then they would not be a crisis. It seemed as if each player in the chain only cared for their pocket and not caring for their clients. Gilbert (2011) shared on the example of a home loan representative in Cleveland who was the intermediary of record for 71 contract credits in one neighbourhood somewhere around 2003 and 2006. The borrowers abandoned the loans within less than two years. One of the advantages of subprime home loan loaning is that it makes home possession feasible for some individuals who can’t fit the bill for prime home loan advances however who are sensibly great credit hazards and have a high probability of reimbursing their advances. There are numerous advantages to society of expanding home possession the length of the financing systems is suitable

Paulet, Parnaudeau, and Relano (2015) also shared that some banks approached lending in a more moral manner which was different than a lot of the more conventional banks. These more moral banks put in place a platform providing the depositors with the opportunity to specify the type of project they would like to support, and then propose some mechanism allowing them to give up some or all of their interest. The borrower knows that the money from his loan comes from certain depositors that have actively chosen to finance his project. This fact means that the borrower has more responsibility, both regarding the bank and the investors. Consequently, they are likely to make more of an effort to be successful based on the transparency, is thus created. Not all institutions behaved in a socially responsible and more way. So as a result of the Financial Crisis, an impressive number of alterations were made for managing the financial industry around the world. These changes are as a matter of first importance the consequence of new controls settled upon at a worldwide level, in particular through the Bank for International Settlements. The point of the new controls, as a rule, alluded to as Basle III, was to advance the strength of the saving money industry and enhance its capacity to ingest stuns emerging from monetary or financial emergency. Higher capital prerequisites, expanding bank liquidity, and bringing down bank influence are the absolute most understood measures whose macroeconomic effects

Gavalas (2015) shared that the G20 started the endeavours to build up another structure of managing the money related organisations, alongside the direction and backing of the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision (BCBS) and the Financial Stability Board (Financial Stability Institute, 2010) which eventually lead to the creation of Basel 3. Watkins (2011) commented that Basel 3 tries to restrain the capacity of banks to influence capital. The rationale is that bigger capital necessities will give a more prominent pad to future misfortunes. Whether the prerequisites are adequate to evade future emergencies appears to be farfetched. Numerous have called attention to the issues with Basel 3. Banks have until 2019 to consent to the new necessities. Basel 3 leaves in place the institutional structure that existed before the emergency.

 

References

 

Basel 3 Image. (2016). Basel Compliance Process. [Webpage]. Retrieved from http://www.interfacing.com/ComplianceSOX-ISO-BASEL-Six-Sigma-Risk/Basel-II

 

Gavalas, D. (2015). How do banks perform under Basel III? Tracing lending rates and loan quantity. In Journal of Economics and Business. 81:21-37. Retrieved from http://www.sciencedirect.com.proxy1.ncu.edu/science/article/pii/S0148619515000259

 

Gilbert, J. (2011). Moral duties in business and their societal impacts: The case of the subprime lending mess. Business & Society Review (00453609). Vol. 116 Issue 1, p87-107. 21p. Retrieved from http://proxy1.ncu.edu/login?url=http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=bth&AN=59161773&site=ehost-live

 

Paulet, E., Parnaudeau, M., and Relano, F. (2015). Banking with Ethics: Strategic Moves and Structural Changes of the Banking Industry in the Aftermath of the Subprime Mortgage Crisis. Journal of Business Ethics. 131.1: 199-207. Retrieved from http://search.proquest.com.proxy1.ncu.edu/docview/1714192163?pq-origsite=360link

 

 

 

Scrutinizing the Part of Leadership in the Subprime Credit Money Related Disaster

20 Jun

In all endeavors part of the role of leadership in decision-making is applying their ethics. Yes, these leaders should ensure that the enterprise make money, but not at the expense of their clients. In terms of the financial crisis of 2007, leaders had a responsibility to protect client investors and the client borrowers. Instead they seemed more focused on their fees and lining their own pockets.

Gilbert (2011) believed that the motive behind the subprime loaning chaos can be linked to choices made by individual home loan agents and loaning officers. These people had moral or moral obligations due to their positions. Funds provided to the borrowers are made by an organization, not by a person. However, the power to choose whether or not to provide the funds to the borrower is determined by an officer or advisory group. This means that a number of persons have the make certain key choices related to funds being provided. Each time someone has to make a choice morals come into play, especially about the interpersonal qualities displayed by those decisions when managing others. Leaders who choose that their organizations will make credits to clients who present considerable danger of default may rationalize their choices on the premise of sufficient security and higher interest. However, the destructive results of defaults after both the organization and the defaulting borrower.

Watkins (2011) supposed that lending orgnisations would more inclinded to act immorally if there was a high likelihood of loss of potential gain. Free enterprise strategies encourage a view that people and instituatuions may seek after monetary gains without limitation. For people lacking moral contemplations there is no tradeoff. They found issuing subprime products too enticing to scrutinise the accounts adequately and remove the unncessary risks.

Sternberg (2013) further noted that funds issued to borrowers with deficient credit quality which at a high likelihood of not being repaid. To the degree that money related organisations made such advances, they did in reality act unscrupulously. What was unscrupulous, was that they disregarded the prerequisite to ensure longevity for the borrower’s investment.

 

References

 

FreeDigitalPhotos. (2016). Leadership Stock Photo. Image courtesy of Master isolated images at FreeDigitalPhotos.net. [Website]. Retrieved from http://www.freedigitalphotos.net/images/leadership-photo-p279464

 

Gilbert, J. (2011). Moral duties in business and their societal impacts: The case of the subprime lending mess. Business & Society Review (00453609). Vol. 116 Issue 1, p87-107. 21p. Retrieved from http://proxy1.ncu.edu/login?url=http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=bth&AN=59161773&site=ehost-live

 

Sternberg, E. (2013). Ethical Misconduct and the Global Financial Crisis. Economic Affairs. Vol. 33 Issue 1, p18-33. 16p. Retrieved from http://eds.b.ebscohost.com.proxy1.ncu.edu/eds/detail/detail?sid=09de7a34-c59f-4686-892f-2c815dae65a3%40sessionmgr105&vid=0&hid=121&bdata=JnNpdGU9ZWRzLWxpdmU%3d#AN=85317472&db=bth

 

Watkins, J. P. (2011). Banking Ethics and the Goldman Rule. Journal of Economic Issues (M.E. Sharpe Inc.). Vol. 45 Issue 2, p363-372. Retrieved from http://eds.b.ebscohost.com.proxy1.ncu.edu/ehost/detail/detail?sid=ee9a82d8-8919-4106-b174-5b1821767295%40sessionmgr104&vid=0&hid=119&bdata=JnNpdGU9ZWhvc3QtbGl2ZQ%3d%3d#AN=60808385&db=bth

 

 

 

Discussion on Subprime Loans and the Dangers They Posture to the Banks and Borrowers

20 Jun

The subprime products seemed specially design for targeting vulnerable persons who could not afford loans in general. This effort to sell bad product seemed driven out of greed and unethical behaviour. The lenders appeared to know what they were doing and only seemed more interested in their fees than the impact to the borrowers. The borrowers seemed unaware of what they are very investing in since they were not very unsophisticated investors.

Gilbert, J. (2011) commented that the subprime contracts represented under 20 percent of all home loans owing, but resulted in the dispossessions which spread to other classes of home loans. Organisations within the home loan business laid off a huge number of workers since the fall of 2007 and lost many billions of dollars related to their subprime business. Where did the dominoes start falling? Many people could be at fault for the financial failure. Firstly, it could have begun with the dishonest borrower. Secondly, it could have been the contract specialists who may not have made the correct inquiries before approving the funds. Thirdly, it could be the venture banks who sold investment packages to speculators. Fourthly, the assessment organisations figured out how to transform subprime contracts into prime speculations instruments. Finally, there are the financial specialists who obtained these products without actually comprehending what they were purchasing.

Sternberg (2013) defined the ‘Subprime home loans’ as a blend of credit to buy land and a home loan as security for the advance. In the case of the subprime, that resulted in the crisis the borrowers did not have enough of the components that would support a decent loan. The borrowers of these loans could not own property of sufficient value to reimburse the bank nor were they gainfully employed to support the payment. Some borrowers have no upfront investment in the home they purchased and obtained loans for 100 percent the value of the properties. The borrowers, therefore, are not committed to the investment and would easily walk away from the properties when the situation becomes challenging. This situation created significant exposure to both the borrowers and lenders.

 

References

 

 

Gilbert, J. (2011). Moral duties in business and their societal impacts: The case of the subprime lending mess. Business & Society Review (00453609). Vol. 116 Issue 1, p87-107. 21p. Retrieved from http://proxy1.ncu.edu/login?url=http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=bth&AN=59161773&site=ehost-live

 

 

Sternberg, E. (2013). Ethical Misconduct and the Global Financial Crisis. Economic Affairs. Vol. 33 Issue 1, p18-33. 16p. Retrieved from http://eds.b.ebscohost.com.proxy1.ncu.edu/eds/detail/detail?sid=09de7a34-c59f-4686-892f-2c815dae65a3%40sessionmgr105&vid=0&hid=121&bdata=JnNpdGU9ZWRzLWxpdmU%3d#AN=85317472&db=bth

Brilliant Visual Instructions the IKEA Way

20 Sep

Would you agree that IKEA provides very effective instructions with their furniture and on their website? What are your thoughts? I would appreciate your comments below.

 

As a project manager and Six Sigma Black Belt, I am always looking for ways to effectively communicating instructions to stakeholders and users. I found that instructions using pictures and other illustrations have been very effective. You are no doubt familiar with the expression that, “A picture is worth a thousand words” . I believe that IKEA has taken this adage all the way to the bank.

We just completed a small redesigning project at home. We acquired our desired pieces from IKEA on afternoon and took them home for assembly. IKEA’s assembly institutions are very simple and clear. No words required.

Some of the advantages that IKEA gains from using only pictures seem to be:

  1. Less requirements of language translation.
  2. Less version control needed to maintain the information.
  3. Lowed printing cost since they are in black and white.
  4. Easier to post on the Internet such as on the IKEA website.

I was impressed with the quality of their packaging of the pieces and the relative ease of assembly. There seems to be a fair bit of Poka-Yoke in the design of the furniture and tools. Usually, if I make a mistake it was because I did not interpret the drawing correctly.

 

Some of the challenges that some people could experience could be the result of:

 

  1. Incorrect interpretation of the pictures or the orientation of the pieces.
  2. Being uncomfortable with using the required tools.
  3. Lack of patience with executing the task and seeing it through to completion.
  4. Being frustrated with the simplicity of the instructions
  5. or and it is frustrating to appreciate some nuances with

 

If you can overcome these challenges you will feel rewarded at the end of the effort. Looking forward to your thoughts.

The 6th International Plenary – ISO/TC 258 Project, programme and portfolio management

30 Aug
Last week I attended my first ISO plenary (conference). The focus of the plenary was to further develop standards for  ISO/TC 258 Project, programme and portfolio management (http://www.iso.org/iso/iso_technical_committee?commid=624837). I was impressed with the level of engagement as the event opened with messages from the Premier’s office as well as messages from the offices of the Lieutenant Governor and the Governor General of Canada. The messages set the tone for the importance of the work ahead for the 60 delegates representing 19 countries.
Prior to this event I had only participated in our Canadian conference calls (mirror committee). As I engaged in the plenary, I gained a better appreciation of the process and the scope of the work being done. It was very rewarding knowing that you are contributing to an international standard that will improve the way our world executes projects.