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Can you give negative feedback to your boss?

career booster

The chain of command is perhaps one of the first attributes that come to be associated with the much dreaded corporate environment. All of us are guided or instructed at work by corporate managers who have the required tools, expertise and experience to do their job (read guiding us). However, there are times when even bosses may end up looking for feedback from employees just as employees would expect from their bosses. Learning how to give feedback at office is definitely a career booster.

Why Upward Flow of Feedback is Desired

However, giving feedback to your employer turns out to be a scary proposition quite simply because of the fact that your boss – seemingly – would only appreciate what he wants to hear from you. It’s a tad difficult for you to offer your honest opinion because of the position (of power) enjoyed by your boss. As many trade gurus suggest that it’s not your job to tell your bosses what they should do. Instead you should try to find out what they do the best and align your ways of working accordingly and bolster your own performance.

However, it is also true that upward management is at times desirable for the well-being of the business itself. No employee or trainee is actually asked to pour their feedback in incessantly – that’s not appreciated. However, the job of your managers is to help you complete your task successfully. The occasional exchange of views (regarding work) only shores up the collaborative environment—thereby fostering a more productive ambience.

Should you be scared of giving negative feedback?

So, as an employee if you are asked to give your feedback don’t be flabbergasted since you have a few suggestions to offer. Acquaint yourself with the correct ways of communicating your suggestions so that you don’t up insulting your boss unwittingly.

Make sure you are not correcting your manager in front of everyone else. That goes true even for managers who are making an effort to correct their employees. Even if you don’t have any other option but to offer your feedback along with every one else you would definitely want to “mould” your expression to make it sound more polite. For instance, instead of saying “What if it was done this way..” say “I really think it would have helped if …”.

It is also very important to understand and acknowledge the fact that there are certain attributes of the company that your boss doesn’t have control over. It would help if you put forward these suggestions after acquainting yourself with these constraints are.

Global Education: Are International Schools the only option?

global education

International schools have actually surpassed public schools or national schools in terms of number of student enrollment – and of course parental preference. The world “student” community – at large- is primarily driven by this belief. However, today what you’re going to read here might as well lead you to think otherwise. Read on to unravel what exactly we mean here.

Enrolling in Malaysian Schools: The Preferences and Views of Parents Discussed

When it comes to Malaysia, as per a report, it is absolutely clear that different people have very different thoughts or rather preferences as far as the schooling options are concerned. For some, enrolling their children in national schools seems an absolutely satisfactory option because that gives them a chance to save up for tertiary school. On the other hand, there are parents who are consistently endorsing international institutions quite simply because of the reputation enjoyed by them. The details have been offered below.

There are a few sets of parents who have enrolled their children in private schools following the national syllabus- and mind you, the choice is not driven by financial constraints. They have stuck to these schools in spite of having sufficient funds to sponsor international school education– and that’s simply because they are saving up for tertiary education. They are of opinion that private schools have way fewer students than that of the public ones and as such their children are getting the required attention from teachers. They are also of opinion that some schools follow strictly textbook oriented learning which does not encourage students to appreciate subjects critically.

What is the need for SPM Qualification?

Then there are parents who in spite of enrolling their children in international schools have paid due attention to the need for SPM qualification. According to them, it is difficult for students to obtain scholarships without Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia qualification.

Notably, some students whose parents have only recently settled in Malaysia, are finding it quite difficult to deal with Bahasa.

What exactly should you know about the medium of instruction?

Similarly, there are students who have been taught in Bahasa Malaysia (medium of instruction) but today are finding it difficult to cope with the lessons at the tertiary level because they are imparted in English. So, the medium of instruction has actually remained a very important factor considered by parents while they are in the process of enrolling their children in the respective academic institutions.

Will Colleges see Fewer Students in Future?

higher education

It has been predicted that in 20 years time, the number of school leavers joining college will actually go down by a significant margin. The rise of the internet – a way cheaper option than conventional classroom has been viewed as one of the major reasons behind this shift. It has further been opined that learning as such will be primarily dominated by e-based concepts, distance learning, work-based learning and of course the increased number of apprenticeships. Here are further details of the same.

Education: How has Information Technology Caught On?

It has been pointed out that future employers will increasingly become less interested in degrees and focus on candidates’ on-the-job-learning capabilities. Though many are still against distance-based learning because that (according to them) leaves no room for personal interactions between teachers and students, online learning or distance learning is not going to lose momentum anytime soon. Employers, in fact, have often argued that full-time students are not really prepared to be “a part of the workforce”. Those who learn while at work – they think- are more suited to meet the demands of the IT industry. They can prepare more efficiently and are more prepared for the corporate world.

Why should you go on to consider the role of Information Technology in reducing Higher Education Costs?

The impact of Information Technology on information and communication businesses has been all-pervading to say the least. It can well be imagined that it will have similar impact on education as well. The scope is clearly huge and this is substantiated by opportunities.

Right now, you can find out about the accredited (4 years) degree in computer science from the University of the People. It stands as the world’s first non-profit online university which is offering this degree for $4,000. So, one can actually gauge the extent to which online learning has gone on to shape education today.

Experts also view the rise of IT in education as a definite means of reducing costs in higher education. Though there very few people that have thought about this but there is actually no room to dismiss the same. It has also been opined that reports not mentioning ways in technology can actually reduce costs of higher education are nothing but flawed. Students can be offered access to free online learning modules. These modules can be created in a cheaper fashion and eventually be shared by several colleges or campuses.

Higher Education in 2040: Predictions!

higher education 2040

For an academician, the estimated future of higher education, should be nothing less than intriguing. The growth of the Chinese and Indian universities and the waning dominance of the West are the two most striking speculations documented so far. 2040! Yes we’re talking 2040! Considering the sea-changes that are likely to shape the future of Higher Education, it won’t really be wrong to claim that 2040 is way too near – i.e. too early for so many changes to take place.

What the book says about education in 2040

Bert Van der Zwaan, the rector magnificus of Utrecht University and Chairman of European Research Universities has come up with a string of predictions regarding Higher education in 2040. Titled, “Higher Education in 2040: A Global Approach”, his book takes a look at the exhilarating future of higher education marked by increased Asian prominence and declining Western influence. Let us take a look at details.

It has been estimated that the Chinese and Indian Universities will actually expand by one-hundred folds in future – thanks to the unprecedented rise of knowledge hubs. The growth of knowledge hubs will definitely be associated with improved focus on top-level scholars, research institutions and universities. Advanced research infrastructures with dynamic interface would be the future as well.

Zwaan, in his book, has also told us about the drastic changes in degree structures and curriculum in the coming years. The relationship between teaching and research will witness notable changes as well.

The growth of knowledge hubs – he says- will be directly influenced by the size of regions. According to him, there will be two knowledge hubs in North America – one in the Boston area and one in North America. London, according to him, however, will actually go on to maintain the status of a knowledge hub with marked ease.

More about these predictions

Zwaan’s views have received support from luminaries like Jouke de Vries. Vries is the professor of governance and public policy at the University of Groningen in the Netherlands. He opined that Zwaan’s predictions are partially right and very strong in their comparative perspective. It has been opined that the Western world is clearly in decline while universities in Asia are growing.

It has also been pointed out by others that in countries like Netherlands the state is becoming less important than the religion. Needless to say, this is viewed as a potential reason behind the expected decline in standards of education.

Why up-skilling is important for women?


A lot of working women around the world often quit their jobs just so that they are able to spend more time with their near and dear ones or even do things that they have always wanted to do. However, after they are done taking a break they wish to return to their professional lives as well. The biggest issue for most women at this stage is whether they would be able to get back into the professional world just as easily as they came out of it. The major problem with them is that they lose touch with the industry that they were working in.

Losing touch

Normally, they do not know anything about the latest trends in the industry that they had been working in for so long. This happens even more so in cases where they are forced to work just to earn – where there is no love or interest involved. This is why with the first chance that they get these women leave their jobs faster than a rat would escape from a sinking ship. In the years that they are away a lot of technological developments happen in the field that they were working. Having not kept pace with the same they find themselves bereft of the necessary experience in such regards.

Achieving the perfect balance

This is why it is very important that women try and achieve that perfect balance between their personal and professional lives. Otherwise they can find serious challenges when they try and be employable following a lengthy hiatus from work. It is very important that a break from work be utilized by increasing one’s professional skills – a process that is also referred to as up-skilling or re-skilling. It can significantly help them with their careers. One of the unwritten but well-understood laws of the professional world is that you have to be always relevant.

Taking responsibility

As a professional the onus always rests on you to make sure that you can stay at par with the expectations of your employers. With up-skilling and re-skilling a professional is able to gain or regain the capabilities and knowledge needed to work in the industry that she had been working before. Now, technology is getting better at a rate that is much quicker than what we can even imagine. There is always a chance that when she was on a break a lot has changed. This is where proper planning can be of so much help.

Career Success: A Few Myths Debunked

career myths

The first myth that we have regarding our careers is that we need to follow a certain path, one that has been followed earlier by other successful people. It is true that it is always better to follow a proven path for a successful career. However, this does not mean that you cannot be prosperous if you follow an untested and uncharted path.  The face of the marketplace is changing each and every day with the influence of globalization. This means that you are always going to come across newer ideas as well as paths that have not been taken before.

Charting a unique course

While trying to choose a career you should not be afraid of the fact that you may be breaking the rules. In fact, your route to being prosperous can be as unique as you are. You should also remember the fact that your bank balance does not define how successful you are.  Quite often it so happens that people take up certain careers just so that they can earn lots of money. The problem is that most often they are not comfortable with what is happening. They are either not made for it or they have no interest in the same.

Pursue your passion

This is why it is very important that you pursue an area that you are passionate about. If you love what you are doing you can be sure that all the wealth, fame, and power that come with it will soon be yours. Quite often when people determine their or others’ worth on the basis of the money that they have in their bank accounts they tend to fall short when it comes to the big moments. It is also important to know that you have an idea of what is best for you.

You know what is best for you

It is true that when you were a child your parents knew what was going to be good for you. But that does not apply anymore now. At that time, it was the duty of your parents to make sure that all that was necessary for you was taken care of by them. You are grown up now and it is time you took charge of your own life.  It is better that you properly understand what you want from your life. When you know that you will be able to determine what career would help you reach your goals.

What kind of career myths do you believe in?

Top tips to get into pharmacy school

pharmacy school

There are certain tips that you can follow if you want to receive education at a pharmacy school. The first thing that you need to do is generate awareness regarding the issue. First of all get all the information that you need to get regarding admission process itself. In case you are planning to apply to more than one pharmacy schools you should get the information straight from the horse’s mouth. At the official website of the said programme you can get all the data you need about the procedures of admission as well as the deadlines by when the work needs to be done.

Getting in touch with the academic advisors

After you have done your initial research you should definitely get in touch with the academic advisor of the said programme and clarify from him all the questions that you may have. Never believe any rumour that you hear. Do not make decisions based on hearsay. Also, be careful when it comes to getting advice from the other students. Before you take any decision as such make sure that you confirm all the facts at your disposal. You should also do enough research on colleges where you want to go to.

How to go about research?

When you are trying to research on a pharmacy school you should ask for catalogs and brochures from the same. In any case, most of the information would be there on the school’s website itself. Before you apply to any institution it is important that you are familiar with its history and curriculum in general. You should also have a fair idea regarding its tests and the various materials that you need in order to be prepared for the same. When you are getting ready for the admission you should fulfill each and every academic requirement.

Getting ready

When you are trying to get ready for one of these examinations it is better that you make sure that you already have enough exposure to preparation materials for different tests. It is better that you take as many tests as you can before you sit for the big one. It is very important that you take this phase as seriously as possible and start getting ready as early as you can. Ideally, you should only take a test when you are absolutely ready for one. At least, you should have such confidence in yourself.

Should We be Concerned regarding the Quality of Academic Papers?

thesis paper

As far as higher education in Kenya is concerned you should be bothered about the quality of the academic papers that you are writing. These are normally supposed to be presented before you graduate.  All this has been indicated in its recent findings -revealed in an audit report done by the Commission for University Education (CUE). However, the said audit has also revealed that there are some serious issues regarding compliance as far as research projects and thesis are concerned. In Kenya only around 50 universities among ones that offer postgraduate education have the necessary framework for supervising errant practices and activities. There are five universities that do not have any quality check setup at all.

Where are these five universities?

These five universities are located in Nyanza, greater Nairobi, and Coast. The report also says that even in cases of universities with necessary frameworks there are problems regarding access to important documents. This is especially applicable with regards to supervisors as well as students. The report has also found out that in some instances the universities themselves are contravening the supervisory framework that they have built up. It cited a couple of universities in Mount Kenya where masters’ degree holders are supervising masters’ thesis presentations.

Misallocation of supervisors

In some cases, it was also seen that the supervisors had been misallocated. One was assigned to supervise a thesis that did not fall within his or her field. The report also stated that some universities did not follow the guidelines laid down by the Commission for University Education with respect to the workload to be borne by supervisors. This is why a lot of supervisors had much more work on their plate than they could manage. In some cases, the report also found that graduation lists were not approved by Senates but by other organs that presumably are not supposed to take any such step.

Issues with graduation lists

A Christian university in Nairobi and a public one at Nyanza were found to have two separate graduation lists. In one case, it was seen that the Senate had approved one list and the final list was much different from the same. Students were added later on in the graduation booklet as per the report. The report also cited the examples of a public university in North Rift and a private university at Nairobi where the supervisors and departments respectively did not give their approval to the graduation lists.

Should you get too involved in your child’s homework?


There are lots of problems that your children can face at different stages of their education. It all varies and depends on the basis of their age. The issues of a first grader are always going to be different from that of a third or a seventh grader. Now, the question that needs to be asked is what you are going to do about this situation as a parent. At times, you may want to give just a few pointers to your child but then you may have to take a greater part in the same. In fact, it has also been seen that parents have often done the homework that their children have found to be difficult.

Been there done that

This is one experience that almost any and every parent has gone through at some or the other point of their lives. So, if you are facing that situation as well do not consider it to be a unique one. Do not think that you are the only one in such a predicament. It is really very tough to maintain that line between getting too involved with your child’s homework and just helping them a little bit with their work.

You need to be careful

As parents you might balk at the suggestion that you may be too much involved with your child’s homework. However, experts say that it is always better to let children figure out how they can solve the challenging assignments by themselves, without taking any help from anyone else – even you, their parents. This is an important part of their education. They argue that school should not only be about grades.  They should be able to write papers by themselves and also ask questions to their teachers in school.

Accepting failure

It is not important or possible that your child will score well in each and every test and assignment that he takes. Failure is a part of life and the earlier they experience it the better. This is because any failure and ensuing disappointment will have your child looking for answers. The precise intention in such a case would be to make sure that such disappointment never comes back in their lives ever again.  This is something that will help them face the tougher challenges of life later on. They should learn from the mistakes they are making so that they never make them again.

Food Styling: Exploring its Prospect as a Career

food styling

Food styling. The words do not really ring a bell when we’re talking about lucrative career opportunities. Who are food stylists? The ones who’re responsible for arranging food for food photography. So, the photograph of the sundae which you came across a magazine looks so good because a culinary professional has taken the trouble to ensure that hot-fudge sundae doesn’t end up looking like a helpless chunk of sugar laced with corn syrup. The sundae looks delicious because of the food stylist. And, if you’re eager to jump to conclusions regarding the “insignificance” of food styling as a profession, then do ensure that you are going through the next segment of the post.

Food Styling: Can it be treated as a profitable career?

How do we adjudge the profitability of a job? Numbers are definitely the way to go. Professionals who are associated with the special food services are closest to being called “food stylists.” These professionals, as per Bureau of Labor Statistics earned an average salary of $ 40,890 in the year 2010. So, you can well imagine that to claim that food styling is not a financially rewarding career option would be to undermine its scope.

What more? Food styling is as nuanced a profession as food photography is. Even if someone is looking at food styling as a side hustle, he/she must have the following skills or qualifications:

  • Passion for food
  • Eye for details
  • A degree in culinary arts

If you are interested in food styling you should understand that there is no actual degree for food styling but most of the aspirants start off with culinary arts degree.

Job Responsibilities of a Food Stylist: Basics and Beyond

As far as food styling is concerned, there are more responsibilities than just arranging the food artfully. The stylist is also responsible for making the food taste good as well. There are commercials or cooking shows where the models have to actually eat the food. Under such circumstances, the food stylist has to be careful about the garnishing added by him/her. For instance, it wouldn’t really be prudent to add Pennzoil on pancakes. Plus there are laws that necessitate parity between the food thus advertised and the actual food to be sold.

It is important for food stylists to be duly aware of the nuances of food photography as well. Let us tell you that food stylists have to take care of nuances of things that other artists don’t even have to bother about.

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