|matrix vision newsletter |
Christmas Again Issue
December, 2010 - Vol 3, Issue 12
|Story of the Month|
A little girl climbed onto Santa's lap, and Santa asked his usual question of her:
"And what would you like for Christmas?"
The child stared at him open mouthed and horrified for a minute and then gasped:
"Didn't you get my E-mail?"
"Christmas is a time when everybody wants his past forgotten and his present remembered. What I don't like about office Christmas parties is looking for a job the next day."
"Santa Claus has the right idea. Visit people once a year."
"Anyone who believes that men are the equal of women has never seen a man trying to wrap a Christmas present."
"Many banks have a new kind of Christmas club in operation. The new club helps you save money to pay for last year's gifts."
"There is no ideal Christmas; only the one Christmas you decide to make as a reflection of your values, desires, affections, traditions."
"I wish we could put up some of the Christmas spirit in jars and open a jar of it every month."
"Oh look, yet another Christmas TV special! How touching to have the meaning of Christmas brought to us by cola, fast food, and beer... Who'd have ever guessed that product consumption, popular entertainment, and spirituality would mix so harmoniously?"
Welcome to the matrix vision Christmas 2010 newsletter. This month's newsletter is a little light hearted - after all it is Christmas. We have lots of Christmas information, stories and quotes.
We would like to take the opportunity of wishing clients, colleagues, associates, friends and anybody else who may read this newsletter a very happy Christmas and a successful and prosperous 2011.
|So This is Christmas|
Before settling on the name of Tiny Tim for his character in "A Christmas Carol," three other alliterative names were considered by Charles Dickens. They were Little Larry, Puny Pete, and Small Sam.
After "A Christmas Carol," Charles Dickens wrote several other Christmas stories, one each year, but none was as successful as the original.
In 1752, 11 days were dropped from the year when the switch from the Julian calendar to the Gregorian calendar was made. The December 25, date was effectively moved 11 days backwards. Some Christian church sects, called old calendarists, still celebrate Christmas on January 7 (previously December 25 of the Julian calendar).
In 1937, the first postage stamp to commemorate Christmas was issued in Austria.
In Armenia, the traditional Christmas Eve meal consists of fried fish, lettuce, and spinach. The meal is traditionally eaten after the Christmas Eve service, in commemoration of the supper eaten by Mary on the evening before Christ's birth.
In the British armed forces it is traditional that officers wait on the men and serve them their Christmas dinner. This dates back to a custom from the Middle Ages.
The abbreviation of Xmas for Christmas is not irreligious. The first letter of the word Christ in Greek is chi, which is identical to our X. Xmas was originally an ecclesiastical abbreviation that was used in tables and charts.
One notable medieval English Christmas celebration featured a giant 165-pound pie. The giant pie was nine feet in diameter. Its ingredients included 2 bushels of flour, 20 pounds of butter, 4 geese, 2 rabbits, 4 wild ducks, 2 woodcocks, 6 snipes, 4 partridges, 2 neats' tongues, 2 curlews, 6 pigeons, and 7 blackbirds.
The first British monarch to broadcast a Christmas message to his people was King George V.
Christmas is great because it is the one time of the year that you get to listen to some of the songs that would not make sense listening to at other times of the year.
Some of my favourites include John Lennon's "And So This Is Christmas", The Eagles' "Please Come Home For Christmas", Michael Ball's "Driving Home For Christmas" and Macy Gray's wonderful version of "Santa Baby".
However last Christmas I discovered (they have been around for years) a great male "a cappella" group originally formed by students of Indiana University called Straight No Chaser. They make great music with a lot of fun. Check out their version of "The Twelve Days of Christmas" and "The Christmas Can-Can". By the way, I was introduced only recently (thanks Archie) to a very clever clip showing what would happen if the Nativity Story was actually to occur in today's high tech world - "The Digital Story of the Nativity".
|Plausible News Stories|
In a move to combat shoppers' complaints of stores selling Christmas related products in October and November, the heads of the major shopping centre chains have petitioned the governments of developed nations to change the holiday to November 25th.
The Union for Shopping All the Time - or USATT - have forwarded on their petition to 42 nations, claiming that this new proposal does have its benefits.
Frank Harris, CEO of Gifts R Us, heads the petition. "As CEO of Gifts R Us, I get increasingly frustrated over the number of complaints I get at this time of year for selling seasonal products." he said. "What are we meant to do between Halloween and Christmas? Sell nothing? Ha!"
Company director of Half Price Goods Incorporated, David Miller, assures that there will be no adverse shock to the average consumer. "It's only a month early" he said "no one will be able to tell the difference...except perhaps Santa. Perhaps we should tell him."
Out of the 42 nations who received the letter of complaint, only Madagascar and the small island nation of YeBobaBon agreed to change the date.
According to a research jointly carried out by Oxford and Cambridge Universities the Queen's Christmas speech on TV is watched by 56% of the adult population in the UK but remembered only by 3% after the Boxing Day. The proportion of people giving some credit to what the Queen says in her speech fluctuates around 1% and never exceeds 1.6%.
The Broadcasting Authority is expected to declare the annual Queen Speech a total waste of air-time and possibly an insult to human intelligence as almost everyone knows that she doesn't mean what she says and that it wouldn't matter a bit even if she did mean it.
A spokesman for the Buckingham Palace said that the Queen was reviewing her role as an annual speech-maker on TV and in the light of the findings of the research she might replace her speech next year by a mini whistle concert. She would whistle a well known melody for a few minutes to have a more meaningful impact on the mind of her subjects.
It is known that the Queen is a keen whistler and that she likes whistling to her corgis and to the Duke of Edinburgh when she feels happy for them. A private whistle coach would be called in next September to prepare the Queen for her Christmas address.
People who have not enough time for Christmas shopping will be allowed to use a 30 hour day instead of the usual 24 hour day during the festive season next year.
Greenwich Observatory Daylight Committee held meetings with the representatives of major superstores in London and prepared a set of proposals for the Government to consider for a speedy enactment in order to release more time for shoppers next Christmas.
Mandy, 26 of Reading, who works in the City was overjoyed by the news of longer days and said: "Whoever came up with this idea must be a genius. Yes, this is exactly what we need. Give me some more time and I'll be able to do my shopping".
But Ramon, 29 of Hackney, who runs a beauty salon in Ealing Broadway was not so supportive of longer days:"This would mean only one thing. I will have to work longer and yet again I won't have enough time for a decent shopping. Pity they couldn't come up with a better idea like a few days when the shops will remain open and everything else will be shut. This would have solved the problem."
A spokesman for the Church of England said that they received the news with caution. They also said that they were in touch with Greenwich Observatory requesting a change of wording in their proposal. The Church would like to see "hoping" inserted in the phrase "to make more time for shopping". The spokesman, Reverend Thomas, the Vicar of Knightsbridge said:"Our stance would be on the side of "hoping" as opposed to "shopping". But we realise also that the modern approach to life is favouring shopping over hoping. We are therefore asking the Daylight Committee to alter their phrase to "to make more time for shopping and hoping".
Leroy, 25 of Lewisham, said that it would be absurd to make time for hoping:"We want shopping, mate, not hoping. We gave up hoping long time ago. Tell this to your Church people. They can hope if they like. But we are for shopping, full stop. My thanks to Greenwich."
The longer days will start on 19 December and the daytime will go back to normal on 26 December.
We can help you improve your organisation by helping you to engage your employees, communicate more effectively, manage change and develop leaders. Now is a great time to plan for next year. Give us a call.
Matrix Vision is a value added reseller and a user of the most powerful and versatile feedback software tool available today.
People need an efficient, confidential and anonymous vehicle for giving feedback to each other. State-of-the-art software can simplify the process of collecting multi-source (360) feedback for anyone in your organisation.
20/20 Insight GOLD is the world's most versatile feedback tool. With this system, we can set up surveys to collect virtually any type of feedback-ideas, opinions, impressions, ratings-from any number of people about the performance of an individual, a team or even your organisation as a whole.organisation. Look at this case study to see how powerful feedback can be.
Case Study: How ADP Uses 20/20 Insight for Internal Quality Surveys*
Automatic Data Processing, Inc. (ADP) is one of the largest providers of a broad range of mission-critical, cost-effective transaction processing and information-based business solutions. Since purchasing 20/20 Insight GOLD in 2000, ADP has assessed more than 16,000 individuals.
The software is used on an almost daily basis for the Ohio Valley Region of ADP's Major Accounts Division. The 20/20 Insight administrator sets up projects for a variety of applications, including: 360-degree feedback, internal and external customer feedback, and training evaluation.
ASP has had excellent success using the program for annual internal quality surveys requested by the region Management Team. In this application, other departments provide feedback to a specific department whose services they receive. Since they all need to work together for the benefit of the client, it's important for each department to learn about its strengths and areas for improvement from its internal customers.
First, the manager of a given department identifies the departments that will give feedback, along with the specific individuals who will complete the questionnaires. The manager provides that information to the administrator, who creates the survey. The survey is brief, typically no more than 10 scaled items, plus one open-ended question for general comments. Respondent relationships are the names of each department giving feedback, such as Client Services, Implementation, Finance and Sales. That way, the data can be displayed in reports according to different customer groups.
Once all the responses have been collected, a PDF file of the report is sent to the department managers, who then discuss the results with their upline manager. Afterwards, managers share the report with their peers in their department. Together they identify problem areas to target and create an action plan for improvement.
Because ADP has conducted these surveys over multiple years, they're able to compare the current year to the previous year to check progress towards completion of goals. These internal quality surveys have significantly improved the level of service that ADP's departments provide to each other.
*Information provided by ADP
To learn more about the power of 20/20 Insight Gold click on the image.
To talk with us about how you can use feedback to help improve your organisation get stronger, please contact us
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