Turkey’s New Violent Political Culture

At the heart of the matter is a culture that programs most less-educated masses (and in Turkey average schooling is 6.5 years) into a) converting the ‘other’ and, if that is not possible, b) physically hurting the ‘other.’ A deep societal polarization

Source: Turkey’s New Violent Political Culture

Ask for Help When You Need It

Lolly Daskal

I am not sure how it began, but there is a definite belief among many people that asking for help is a sign of weakness. In my work as a leadership coach, I see it again and again in all kinds of organizations, companies and teams: very smart people need help but don’t ask for it, and their refusal ends up keeping them from being as productive and effective as they could be otherwise.

If you’re reluctant to let anyone know you need assistance—whether it’s because of pride, fear of being judged or just not wanting to draw attention to yourself—it’s time to get over it. Here are some things to keep in mind when you’re learning to ask for help:

Demonstrate you’ve tried. When you encounter a roadblock, try to get around it by yourself before reaching out. People are more inclined to help those who have tried to help themselves first. Explain what you’ve tried on your own and what went wrong before asking for advice.

Seek collaboration. Once you’re ready to ask for help, propose it as a partnership between you and your helper. You don’t want to dump everything on them but to put your heads together to look for solutions as a team. Let them know you’re willing to do your part.

Be specific. Make sure the person you’re asking knows how they can be most valuable to you. Tell them exactly what kind of help you need, and why, to make sure the assistance you get is what you actually need.

Stay engaged. It’s important to stay engaged with the person who’s helping you. Learn from them, watch them, listen to them—ask questions and take notes. If you pay close attention to how your colleague is handling the problem, you should be able to tackle it on your own in the future. You’ll even be able to help the next person who faces the same issue.

Know that most people enjoy helping. If you’re scared to approach someone to ask for help, remember that most people love to help others. In return, make sure you let them know that their assistance will have a meaningful impact. People like to know their actions matter.

Ask privately, praise publicly. The best way to ask for help is do it privately. Pick one or two people you think are best suited to help you. Ask for what you need—don’t forget to be specific—and when you’ve cleared the hurdle, praise them publicly for the help they’ve given you.

Give help to get help. When the time comes to ask for help, you’ll have a big point in your favor if you have a reputation of being someone who’s willing to give help. When your turn comes to ask, you’ll know how good it feels to give. And when your turn comes to help, you’ll know what a relief it is to the person in need.

The next time you find yourself needing help, remember that how you ask is almost as important as what you ask, that people are willing to give much more often than not, and that there’s no better way to reward them than by letting them know, in public, how important their help was.

Lead from within: Asking for help isn’t easy, but it is necessary if you want to be as effective and productive as you know you can be.

Oxfam Great Britain permanently banned from operating in Haiti after sex scandal

Haiti minister Aviol Fleurant discusses the resolution of the Oxfam scandal in Port-au-Prince
Haiti minister Aviol Fleurant discusses the resolution of the Oxfam scandal in Port-au-Prince Credit: Reuters

14 June 2018 • 1:09am

The Haitian government said on Wednesday it had permanently banned international charity Oxfam Great Britain from operating in the country following a scandal over sexual misconduct by some of its workers there.

A government statement said the action – which followed a temporary suspension in February – was taken because of Oxfam’s “violation of Haitian legislation and serious breach of the principle” of human dignity.

“The NGO is therefore declared persona non grata,” Aviol Fleurant, minister of planning and external cooperation, said on Wednesday at a press briefing also attended by the communications and interior ministers.

He said a draft law was being prepared to provide closer control over, and coordination with, the many foreign charities operating in poverty-stricken Haiti.

Oxfam, which had been present in Haiti since 1978, greatly increased its presence there following the catastrophic earthquake of 2010, as did scores of other nongovernmental organisations.

But a 2011 Oxfam report, made public this year, said the group’s then-country director, Roland van Hauwermeiren, had admitted paying for sex and that three staff members had physically threatened a witness.

Four Oxfam employees were fired for “gross misconduct” and three others, including Van Hauwermeiren, were allowed to quit.

Mark Goldring, Oxfam Great Britain chief executive, announced his resignation last month, saying someone else should help “rebuild” the group following the scandal in Haiti.

Oxfam Chief Executive Mark Goldring is to step down at the end of the year
Oxfam Chief Executive Mark Goldring is to step down at the end of the year Credit: Getty

Oxfam Great Britain, part of Oxfam International, saw its funding plummet amid the damaging revelations.

The scandal sparked additional claims about aid workers in Chad, Bangladesh, Nepal and the Philippines, prompting Oxfam to launch a global action plan against sexual harassment and abuse.

The fault in our relationships

Everyone from everywhere

Today’s topic of reflection is relationships. Relationships are basic components of our lives as highly social beings. Probably most of us are part of several relationships at the same time, but it can often be hard to glimpse behind their thick layers. Frequently, relationships are extremely complex and can easily become a source of great pain. I was wondering how people unconsciously cross this invisible bridge between happiness and the point where their relationships are mostly filled with heavy feelings of sadness, anger, frustration and shame. Any kind of relationship, either with family members, friends or with a partner can, at any given moment in life, seem like an inescapable labyrinth that weighs down on you. You can, all of a sudden, find yourself in a relationship that seems absolutely broken, in a lonely place where the person who used to bring the most joy to you is now floating…

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