WEB503 Blog Post 4

Stage 13

Contact form issue fixed, contact form now fully functional.  Text and image content being implemented on Eggs page and Sheep page. Text is using bold and strong tags for visual and SEO.  Images are appropriately sized and thumb nailed with Alt text.  Images are organized into separate folders   Underlines implemented to help define content.

 

 

Stage 14

More text and image content added to website.  Produce page, Sheep page, Poultry page, About page and Eggs page all completed.  Slideshow removed as not fully functional.  Some in text hyperlinks implemented.

 

 

Stage 15

More text and image content added to website.  Home page and News page finished.  More in text hyperlink calls to action added.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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WEB503 Blog Post 3

Stage 10

I have had a general tidy up and down sizing of code and classes. Images are now displayed in gallery sections on the Poultry, Eggs, Sheep and Produce pages and all images have a fine black border and gallery images now link to full size images and have a caption for the thumbnail images.  More classes have been added for text and I have started to identify a few problems to resolve before or after going live.

 

Stage 11

Changes made to the page headers to fix the placement issues on Firefox, new ID created and applied on all screen sizes through Media Queries.  Text resized and active contact links added.

 

Stage 12

Site uploaded and tested, generally functioning but a few issues have been identified for fixing, such as some placement issues where px was used rather % for spacing, and the contact form does not seem to be fully functioning.  Google Analytics added and tested, performing well.

WEB503 Blog Post 2

Stage 6

I have removed any place holder borders to assist in fine tuning the page layouts.  Css has been tidied up and reformatted to avoid any confusion, and a few new class’s have been added and implemented.  I have started to apply responsiveness to the website for use on mobile devices.  More place holder images have been implemented and some content is starting to be implemented.  Some changes to padding and spacing applied and I am making some decisions about spacing and content (less on “EGG” page, etc).

 

Stage 7

I have added content to the Header and Footer (images, text, links and icons), applied Media Queries to the header and implemented the responsive header into all pages.  The Media Queries css has been structured for improved efficiency.  The links in the header and footer (email, social media, other websites) are active and link correctly.  Naming Conventions are being refined as more Media Queries are implemented to avoid any confusion.

 

Stage 8

Media Queries have been created and applied for the page heading and page text, these new classes have been implemented into the Media Queries css in the same structure as previous Media Queries.  The Website HTML has been updated so that all columns have will responsive sizing.  An issues with inheritance between the Style css and the Breakpoint css has been identified and fixed.

 

Stage 9

Media Queries created and applied to images and the  page footer, these new classes have been implemented into the Media Queries css in the same structure as previous Media Queries.  Responsive page footer has been implemented on all pages.

WEB503 Blog Post 1

Stage One

Stage One Client Brief has been completed, unfortunately my client was unable to supply me with their existing logo before this was due in so it was a bit light on color choices and font choices as I was waiting on their content before making those decisions.

 

Stage Two

A basic website has been constructed with Bootstrap, Style.css, reset.css implemented for all pages, meta tags implemented for each page, java script for bootstrap in place for all pages, etc.

 

Stage 3

Class’s are starting to be implemented along the design plan using repeatable class’s for text, headings, images, etc

Stage 4

More class’s created and applied and a few design changes made (galleries changed).

 

Stage 5

More class’s created and implemented for text and spacing.  New container type used for improved responsiveness.  New header color choice (black) and header color (brown) and a page background (gray).  Sub footer added for continuity and design.  Nav bar color changed to dark charcoal.

Blog Post 4 – “I.T.’s a Deal” Case Study

  1. Your Goals for the Meeting.

I believe that much of the company’s internal conflict comes from poor communication.  For example, rather than reasoning with Barry that there are other factors involved in the company’s reluctance to use new supplies that aren’t related to the lowest price, Mike has been avoiding the issue which has frustrated Barry.  Also, while Kahu and Brair’s use of social media hasn’t been very successful, they were never told to not pursue it and believed that they were showing initiative by setting up the Facebook page and using Twitter.

Mike and Maria’s goals for the meeting should be re-establishing clear and effective communication within the company and to clarify some of the company’s values and policies and the staff’s roles and responsibilities.  It would be pointless to approach this meeting aggressively with the intention of casting blame as this would further erode the morale of staff trying to improve company with little guidance from Mike and Maria.

Mike and Maria either need to be more available to provide leadership or they need to delegate an amount of the leadership responsibilities to someone else (perhaps Pat).  A system of open communication (regular meetings, open door, etc) needs to be set into place to help dispel the lowered staff morale and to avoid any further conflict in the future.

The meeting would also be a good time to clarify the company’s stance on social media, the use of the company’s social media. To voice concerns about sourcing stock for the lowest price over loyalty to current suppliers. This is also a good time to get feedback from staff as to their views and concerns to cover in future meetings.

 

  1. The Relevant Issues to Cover.

Morale is low amongst several of the staff due to frustration at what appears to be missed opportunities.

There is poor communication between the staff and Mike and Maria which has led to confusion and unprofessional conduct.

There has been a lack of leadership and guidance from Mike and Maria that is at the root of the current conflict.

A lack of clarity on the role and use of social media in the company has reflected poorly on the company.

Staff have over stepped their roles and responsibilities due to the lack of guidance and defined leadership hierarchy.

Barry’s aggressive behavior needs to be examined, discussed and resolved, it should not be allowed to make other staff, including Mike, uncomfortable.

 

  1. Identify the Needs and Wants of the Main Parties.

Mike and Maira Geekly

  • To be less involved in the day to day running of the company.
  • To treat long term customers with respect.
  • To treat long term suppliers with respect.

 

Kahu

  • To be able to contribute to the company’s success and to have his ideas recognized.
  • To bring a more youthful approach to the business’s marketing by using social media promotion.

 

Brair

  • To be able to contribute to the company’s success and to have his ideas recognized.
  • To bring a more youthful approach to the business’s marketing by using social media promotion.

 

Barry

  • To be able to contribute to the company and to have his ideas recognized.
  • To improve the company’s profitability by sourcing cheaper stock.

 

Pat

  • A pleasant work environment.
  • Recognition of other staffs wants and needs.
  • Faster response from upper management.

 

  1. How to Approach the Meeting.

First make sure everyone is aware of the meetings time and date and of the meeting’s agenda. This is to give everyone a chance to think about the relevant issues they might like to speak about.  Then start the meeting with a recap of the facts of the current issues being faced by the company.

Then clarify the company’s stance on social media, the use of the company’s social media, and the concerns around the sourcing of stock for the lowest price over loyalty to the current suppliers.  It should be suggested to Kahu and Brair that they could have a meeting in a few days to speak more about the social media issues but in the meantime the offending twitter post should be removed. A similar meeting should be suggested to Barry regarding his thoughts on sourcing stock.  This should help keep the meeting moving.

At this point staff should be commend for using their intuitive to improve the company and reminded that everyone is working towards the same goals.  At no point should blame be cast at staff for some of the poor decisions that have been made.

Suggestions should be invited as to how communication could be improved in the future with the intention of putting a regular meeting system into place and staff should be given a chance to provide feedback on any other areas of concern with an opportunity to discuss these issues at the next meeting.

The further meetings with Kahu, Brair and Barry would provide the opportunity to clarify the roles and responsibilities of these staff within the company and to speak with Barry privately about controlling his temper.

 

  1. Things to Remember About Communication Skills While Conducting the Meeting

Mike and Maria need to keep firm control of their emotions at this meeting, while they will be understandably upset, directing blame at staff will only cause more ill will as the staff are in their way only trying to improve the company that they potentially hold shares in.  They need to focus on the actual problems and not on who might be responsible.  Mike and Maria should use I statements not you statements when addressing the staff and they should acknowledge the hard work that staff have put in and the initiative that they have tried to show.  It’s important that they give the staff a chance to speak and that they listen actively to them and show a willingness to open communication in the future.

  1. How will you manage Barry, who is adept to become angry.

Barry’s anger tends to come from frustration that others are not being rational or listening, so he needs to have the opportunity to have his ideas and arguments listened to actively and any disagreements or alternative ideas need to be calmly discussed until Barry can see the logic of the decision.  Showing recognition and appreciation of the work Barry has put in trying to source cheaper stock would also help Barry to feel valued and not unappreciated.

If Barry does become angry then it is important that Mike and Maria don’t allow themselves to respond in the same way.  If it becomes necessary, they should try to take a break or to change the environment.

For the future some staff guidelines on appropriate behavior could be a useful standard of conduct to refer to If Barry or anyone else has a temper.

 

  1. How will you achieve an effective close to the meeting.

At the end of the meeting Mike and Maria should take the time to check that everybody understands what has been discussed in the meeting and are agreeable about the actions being taken.  This enables any confusion or conflict around the meeting to be resolved immediately.  Mike and Maria should also set a time for a next meeting and ask for input from staff as to the next meetings agenda.  They should then briefly recap the meetings topics and outcomes.  Double check the actions being taken and reiterate the responsibilities being assigned before thanking the staff for their time and input and adjourning the meeting.

 

Blog Post 3 – “Teams Teams Teams”

Part One

How can a team overcome ineffective members?

What makes a great team?

How can a team stay effective and efficient?

The answer to these questions is quite simple, good communication!  Effective communication within a team or amongst people in general will always help to improve and maintain efficiency and morale.  Even quite serious interpersonal issues can usually be resolved through good communication techniques.

Fortunately, we haven’t had any problems of that nature within our COMs team “the Oracles”, quite the opposite.  Our team has interacted well from our very first meeting and that has only gotten better as we have gotten to know each other.  I think that in general we are quite an effective team and that we have been able to work together well.  Everyone in our team makes an effort to participate in meetings and to complete any designated work.  There are no big egos, so ideas can be examined and discussed freely and it has been a supportive team environment for all of us.  I feel that our communication has improved as everybody has grown more confidant in the group project.

Part Two

I believe that the team you study or work with is incredibly important.  Humans are highly social and are very attuned to the verbal and non-verbal signals from the people around them even without the added pressure of shared goals.  For example, I’ve had terrible jobs working with a good people and I had a great time, but I’ve also had good jobs with a bad team and I had an awful time. So clearly the impact that your team can have on your morale and productivity is huge as you cannot help being affected by the environment you are working/studying in.

I think that effective and efficient team work will be invaluable to me in my studies over the next 3 years at NMIT.  I’m sure I’ll be involved in many group projects during study and it will always be a good opportunity to learn new skills in communication, IT and design.  In future employment these skills will be very valuable as most jobs involve working with and around other people whether it’s working in a team, interacting with co-workers, meeting with clients or handling customer support.

 

Blog Post 2 – “Reflections on the Team Activities”

Today we participated in several different team activities to help us examine how we communicated in a group environment.  It was hilarious as well as insightful.

The Blindfold – This game involved two people from our group of five putting on blindfolds and the rest of the group guiding the blindfolded members outside to the Student Center lawn.  Initially no one seemed to be very keen to be blindfolded (myself included) but to speed things along I volunteered, another member of our group put his hand up and we were ready to go.  I suggested that we buddy up, a blindfolded person with a non-blindfolded person to guide them and we headed off.  My buddy was excellent, he provided a guiding hand and clear concise directions that were easy to follow and without any mishaps we made our way out to the Student Center lawn.  I think that activity went very smoothly.

The Rope – Once we at the Student Center lawn, Belma gave us a new activity to complete.  Again, two group members would be blindfolded, and the rest of the group would verbally direct them to move around a rope on the ground to make a pattern.  I volunteered to wear the blindfold again as I felt no one else was very keen to wear it and after a little bit of confusion a second group member volunteered.  I found this activity a little bit more frustrating as I spent a lot of time standing still with no direction as the rest of the group spoke amongst themselves as they tried to work out how to make the pattern.  When I did receive directions, they were often not very specific, so it was very hard to know what to do and I had to ask a lot of questions.  It was still a good exercise to get people communicating but I felt that some my group needed to be more confident to participate in the activity and not be hesitant to voice their thoughts and opinions.

The Balloon – In this activity we moved into smaller groups and had to blow up and tie a balloon.  One person could blow up the balloon using only their mouth and the other two could only use one hand each to tie the balloon.  I found this activity much easier as my group members were more willing to get involved and weren’t shy to put themselves into the activity. We had a good laugh and while it was surprisingly tricky we got the balloon tied off eventually.

In conclusion I had fun (I usually do) and got to know some of my classmates better through the activities.  I did feel that as the term continues some of my classmates will have to step out of their comfort zone a bit more.  I hope that their confidence builds as we progress, as it seems to me that their communication skills are actually pretty good and the only thing holding them back is a lack of confidence.