WHY DOES SUPERMAN WEAR A STUPID RED CAPE?

Dear Readers,

I have struggled to write a post all day but the work load mounts, I stopped by at my favourite blog Ofilispeaks  and as usual I was not disappointed, I am free to share as I have done credit to his brains. Enjoy….

Why Does Superman Wear A Cape? Nobody knows. Not even him. He doesn’t need the cape to fly and unlike Batman he does need it to glide. Maybe he uses it as a head wrap or perhaps a blanket to sleep at night…who knows.

I mean the cape does not give him any super powers or any particular advantages. In fact he can function well without the cape but yet he wears it! That red flowing cape that drives engineers crazy!

Especially when they realize that Superman can actually jump higher and fly faster without all the unnecessary drag caused from his cape flapping around in the wind and colliding with all kinds of air molecules … faster than a speeding bullet? Yeah right … more like dumber than a speeding bullet!

The red flowing cape that his enemies use against him on several occasions to fling, strangle and slam him all around Metropolis. Just check out this 2013 Man Of Steel fight scene where General Zod’s loyalists kick Superman’s behind by using his cape against him.

As you can see from the end, even Disney Incredibles know better! And that is that capes are a no no for any serious super heroes. But yet Superman wears it…

Maybe because he is so freaking strong that he does not realize all the disadvantages of having a cape. I mean he defeated Doomsday see video and even beat the Flash in a race see video so why take off the cape? Maybe it’s because he has always worn one? And that might actually be it, because all fiction aside…a lot of our businesses are like Superman with his useless cape.

We have systems just like he has his red cape, we don’t know why they are there or what purpose they serve, all we know is that it has been there from the start so why change it. Even when the illogicality hits us straight in the face we just stick with the red capes not realizing how much they slow us down. How much they hamper us.

If you have ever been to the Atlanta International Airport (I have been but it was a sad experience I almost missed my flight and my luggage did not make it to Nigeria), you will notice something peculiar. It consists of 7 concourses, concourse A, B, C, D, E, F and … not G. The next concourse is actually T, not only that but concourse T comes before concourse A. Which makes no sense at all, but why the illogicality? Why not make concourse “T” concourse “A” and re-arrange all the others to follow a logical A-B-C-D-E-F-G order?

The answer is as complex as Superman’s Cape. The illogical naming of the Atlanta concourses is a thing of legacy as described by David Zweig in his awesome book Invisibles: The Power Of Anonymous Work In An Age Of Self-Promotion. In the book, David inquired from Jorge Cortes the assistant director of Design Planning and Development at the Atlanta International Airport. Here is a summary of his findings:

“I later emailed … to get an explanation for why ‘T’ was first used and why it still in use now. Alas, the reasoning behind it is so layered and opaque, all I can say is succinctly is that it’s the result of repeated airport redesigns, additions and renaming’s dating back to 1980!”

Notice those words “repeated,” “layered,” “opaque” and “1980.”

All of them relate to that one thing that kills businesses and organizations, red cape systems that have become established simply because they were used repeatedly in the past and are now so enmeshed in layers and layers of opaque bureaucracy that is hard … almost impossible to remove … to change. So the company just flies along with the status quo, too un-bothered to realize or acknowledge the detriments of an illogical legacy systems.

But the red cape phenomenon is not just limited to Atlanta…it affects us here in Nigeria.

One of our many red capes are roundabouts.

We build roundabouts all over the country especially in Lagos. Despite the fact that it has clearly not worked in controlling traffic. I mean just check out Falomo at rush hour or one of the many Lekki roundabouts and you will understand the problem with roundabouts! But who dares get rid of the roundabouts? No one!

It is ingrained in our system, likely from the British who gave it to us in the early 1900′s. And boy have wee held on tight to it. Building roundabouts everywhere even when the evidence shows that it makes no sense to do so. I mean just consider the roundabout at Allen Avenue!

Where do I start?

Growing up Allen Avenue was the hit spot, the Adeola Odeku of the Main Land. But today due to population explosion Allen Avenue is packed … so packed that a permanent concrete barrier has been placed to prevent cars from making u-turns in the middle of Allen Avenue. In fact the only way you can turn is via two roundabouts at either end of Allen.

The more interesting roundabout of the two is the one close to Adeniyi Jones.

But before I start, let me explain that a roundabout is meant to function independent of traffic wardens. But this is Nigeria where the roundabouts get so congested that we need traffic wardens … not 1 but several of them. But what makes this particular roundabout crazily “red cape” unique is the fact that it has traffic lights in it! I have never seen a round about with traffic lights in it. The first time I entered that roundabout I was confused … I thought it was prank or some sort of joke. But it was real!

Why build a round about with traffic lights in it? What’s the point? Why not just remove the roundabout and replace it with a fully functional junction with traffic lights. And why do we still build roundabouts! The answer is simply this…just like superman’s cape, like the concourse “T” at the Atlanta International Airport and like many others things hampering businesses, it happens because of legacy, because that’s the way people have done it in the past.

Great leaders, great entrepreneurs are the ones bold enough, crazy enough to question the red capes and take them out of their organizations … because we like Superman don’t need capes to fly!

 

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IN #NIGERIA ZEBRA CROSSINGS ARE FOR ZEBRAS ONLY

When I was in primary school, they had just completed the painting of several Zebra crossings along Allen Avenue and Opebi areas. Our mum was driving us on that particular day when we approached one of the newly painted Zebra crossings and then she told us … and I can never forget

“If you walk on the Zebra crossing, cars will automatically stop for you.”

Well several months after that, the driver or our parents forgot to pick us up from school (St. Leo Catholic School), so we had to walk all the way from Toyin Street to Adeniyi Jones, needless to say no cars stopped for us at the Zebra crossings. It was like the Zebra crossings were invisible. In fact it seemed like cars moved faster in the Zebra crossing zones. Except that you happen to be a Zebra … then they will stop!

But it is not that we have bad drivers, we just are not trained drivers.

People often say that if you can drive in Nigeria you can drive anywhere in the world … “huh” is my reaction … because, actually if you can drive in Nigeria, chances are that you can’t really drive anywhere else. Because other places have rules, and without an understanding of the rules you can’t drive there.

But it is not all our fault…the government has a hand.

They (the government) wake up one morning and paint lines on the road put up signs left right and center, sometimes the signs vary from local government to local government depending on who got the contract. Its like a hodgepodge of road paint. Some roads have lanes, others don’t have lanes. And soon people are ignoring the rules not because they want to but because the implementation is inconsistent and confusing.

Now back to the Zebra crossings…

The reason Nigerian drivers will only stop for Zebra’s is because there is no adequate training. And the people meant to implement this training (traffic wardens) are clueless most of the time except when there is a financial benefit. If the traffic wardens understand that their role is not to prey on drivers mistakes but rather to educate and teach drivers, we might see some change.

But for now and to be safe … dress like a Zebra before you cross!

OfiliSpeaks

 

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WORD FOR TODAY..

Here are two more stumbling blocks you need to remove in order to win someone to Christ:

1) Boredom. Jesus isn’t boring, but sometimes religion is. The story is told of a lady who fell asleep during the sermon. Pointing at the man sitting next to her, the pastor said, ‘Please wake that woman up!’ The man replied, ‘You put her to sleep, Reverend, you wake her up!’ Jesus is called ‘the Good Shepherd’ (John 10:11), and the Greek word for ‘good’ is ‘kalos’, which means ‘captivating'; that’s the Christ we need to present to those seeking spiritual direction.

2) Money. It’s been said the most sensitive nerve in a person’s body is the one that runs to their wallet. Have there been financial scandals in the church? Yes. They even had them in the New Testament church (Acts 5). But don’t throw the baby out with the bath water! It takes money to build churches, feed and clothe the needy and send out missionaries. When money is in the right hands, it’s a solution, not a problem. Furthermore, if God can trust you to finance His plans, He will show you how to make more money. He said, ‘…I am the Lord your God, Who teaches you to profit…’ (Isaiah 48:17 AMP).

3) Discomfort. People say, ‘I just don’t feel comfortable in church.’ The truth can do that to you! The gospel is designed to comfort the afflicted and afflict the comfortable. When Paul preached, some people trembled, but when trembling leads to trusting in Christ, it’s a good thing.

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ON A LIGHTER NOTE….Vol 17

Humour

Stopped by Jide Salu’s blog and found this, thought I should share with you all.

I thought it was an ingenious poster. In this season of Wars, Boko Haram and What-have-you-atrocities…I thought this pic should bring much needed smile or laughter to readers depending on your humour level.

Feel free to send us photos you think will make us smile or laugh.

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WHO KNOWS WHAT YOU KNOW MATTERS.

From birth we have been wired to believe that the people who know the most, the ones who work the hardest, the ones who are the best in their field are the ones bound for success. But that is rarely the truth, because it is never really about what you know but rather who knows what you know that matters.

You could be the very best at your job, but if your manager is not aware that you are the best at what you do, you will get stuck. And many people get stuck but they don’t know why. They swear they have the best cupcakes in town but nobody is buying, they know they have the most awesome manuscript in the world but no publisher is biting, they know they are the most kick-ass worker at their job but no promotion. So what do they do? They try and be better.

They bake sweeter cupcakes, write better manuscripts, put in extra hours at their job hoping that somebody will notice. But nothing. In fact they watch other people with inferior products and subpar performance surpass them. They curse their luck and try and become even better…they go to culinary school, go to creative writing classes, get a PhD…but nothing really happens. Because it’s never been about what you know…

Steve Wozniak was definitely the best at what he did; he invented the Apple I the first ever computer system to display on a home television. Or so we are told, we don’t really know who was the first ever to design a computer system that displayed on a home television. It could have been another geeky kid in a another geeky garage, but that does not matter. Because Wozniak met Jobs. Without Jobs apple will still probably just be a fruit.

Jobs called investor after investor; telling them about Wozniak’s invention. Despite several rejections he kept at it until they convinced Mike Markkula to see their invention…and the rest is history. They could have decided to build an even better computer system much faster and sexier. But they understood that they needed to find someone who knew what they had invented.

That was 1976…today the ‘who’ has expanded…we don’t have to depend on a few people to know what we can do, we are now in the age of the crowd. Where the crowd decides. Blogs have replaced traditional publishers, youtube has replaced record labels and kickstarter has replaced venture capitalists.

Today we can create products and make noise about it with the web and people will listen if it is good. Today, we can’t afford to sit on the sidelines hoping that someone will notice us. We have to take it to the people that matter, because the more people that know about what you can do the better your chances of success. Make noise about yourself today!

Ofili

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HOW NOT TO BECOME A JOSE MOURINHO AT WORK…..


Hey guys,

I got a piece I would like to share with you from Ofilispeaks. A writer I admire so much, this is sequel to the how not to be a David moyes at work and not that I would like to disown my coach or my club, but the lies from Ofili speaks a lot on reality and how to relate these to your personal life,

Enjoy…….

#1 Recruit From Within Your Organization First Before Recruiting Outside
One of the thing that baffles me about Managers is this addiction to recruit talent from outside when they already have talent in their very own company. And they do so at a much higher price, ignoring the talent within their organization … dismissing them as being too young, too inexperienced and not worthy of that big pay raise. It’s as if there is this magical and might I add false belief that outside organization hiring is better, that why you see time and time again that the people that earn the most are normally the ones that have changed jobs the most. But let’s ignore the money aspect for a second and look at the performance aspect.

According to the independent.ie, on January 29, 2014, Chelsea had 39 goal attempts against West Ham out of that they scored a whooping zero times. This was the most goal attempts by any Premier League club in the last 10 years without scoring! But this is nothing new, Mourinho anticipated that Chelsea needed strikers at the start of the season, but what he did to address this was bizarre and confusing.

He loaned out a proven striker by the name of Romelu Lukaku to Everton despite the fact that he had scored 17 times last season. To replace Lukaku, Mourinho went all the way to Russia to bring in Samuel Eto, who was playing in the less competitive Russian league. But that was just a fragment of the bigger picture …. the number of goals Chelsea players had scored this season was 60, while the number of goals the players they had loaned out to other teams had scored was an impressive 82 as of January 2014!

If Chelsea had held on players like Lukaku that were already in their system and not focused on hiring from outside, who knows where they would be this season. As Managers we need to focus on the talent we have from within before looking outside.

#2 Your Very Own Outside Talent May Come Back To Hurt You
Watching 21 year old Athletico Goal Keeper Thibaut Courtois make save after save against Chelsea in their April 30th Champions League victory over Chelsea was spell binding. In fact the only goal that got past him during the entire 180 minutes of the double leg encounter was a deflection. This was a sharp contrast to the other end, the Chelsea goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer who become the oldest Champions league debutante at the age of 41! Continue reading

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WORLD CUP GROUP F PREVIEW….Nigeria VS Bosnia Herzegovina

Nigeria take on Bosnia-Herzegovina at the Arena Pantanal in Cuiaba on June 22, from 11pm GMT.

Head to head
Nigeria and Bosnia-Herzegovina have never versed each other in international competition.

The game
Both teams will be in need of a victory after being unable to secure maximum points in their respective opening games in Group F.
Bosnia-Herzegovina will be the favourites to take the win when they face the Super Eagles, following an impressive performance against a star-studded Argentina squad on June 16.
Nigeria’s 0-0 draw with Iran did no favours in suggesting that the African side would be capable of mounting a challenge for qualification, however, Bosnia-Herzegovina will need to be disciplined at the back to hold off a Nigeria side that knows this is a must-win match.

The big issue
The main issue facing both teams is their capability to convert chances into goals.

When Bosnia-Herzegovina took on a packed Argentina defence last week, there were very few goal-scoring opportunities. Against Nigeria those chances should come more regularly and must be taken.
One player who will be directly involved in any forward movement of the ball is 21-year-old Muhamed Besic. His distribution from the Bosnia-Herzegovina midfield against the Argentines was effective and if he can have the confidence to do so again, alongside Miralem Pjanic, then a win is on the cards.
Nigeria’s main issue against Iran was breaking through a defence with no recognisable star players, and that same struggle is likely to present itself against Bosnia-Herzegovina. Even with 69% possession against Iran, the Super Eagles showed that they are creatively weak and will need to improve on their movement in the final-third if they stand a chance of making it past the group stage.

The game breaker
Bosnia-Herzegovina’s Edin Dzeko was unable to find the net against Argentina, but the Manchester City striker will fancy his chances on late Saturday/ Sunday. He’ll be the focus of the Nigerian defence so if he can exploit that, chances will open up for his team-mates.
For Nigeria it is Ogenyi Onazi. No Nigerian midfielder had a better passing accuracy than Onazi (82%) against Iran, and the defensive midfielder will be a key player in turning defence into attack for the Super Eagles.

Culled from FourFourTwo.

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ON A LIGHTER NOTE Vol 14….Stories of a 4 year old.

This is extremely hilarious.

…..You gotta see it.

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DONT BE A DAVID MOYES IN THE OFFICE

The David Moyes story, as told by the 2013/2014 football season, this drama rocked the football world and Manchester United as a club, so unless you have been living under a rock or perhaps you hate soccer football so much that you close your ears every time you hear the words GOOALLLL … then you would have probably heard the phrase “The Chosen One” in reference to David Moyes the now ex-Manchester United coach who got fired after just 10 months on the job.

What’s more troubling is the fact that he was handpicked by arguably (from a Liverpool fan’s perspective) the greatest Manager in English Premier League History Bill Shankly Alex Ferguson. Who selected David Moyes specifically to continue his Manchester United legacy of greatness. Who would object to such a recommendation coming from such a prominent figure? Nobody. That’s why Moyes was signed to a staggering £36m six-year deal!
But from tales of arguments on the training ground with players, to fans turning against the new coach and a string of abysmal record breaking defeats … Moyes was fired after less than a year on the job. A firing that occurred against the back drop of a banner draped in the Manchester United stadium that read THE CHOSEN ONE.
Perhaps the plan was for the banner to hang for 6 years but it barely lasted 10 months. In fact the banner was one of many things that went wrong in the whole David Moyes saga and is actually #1 in my list of The 4 Ways To Avoid Becoming A David Moyes At Work…

#1 Do Not Hang A Banner In Your Office Declaring Yourself The Chosen One And Don’t Let Anyone Hang It For You Either

A saying that I love goes
“Understand what is expected of you and exceed those expectations.”
I add my own spin to it and say
“Understand what is expected of you and exceed those expectations except if the expectation is too high in which case you should lower the expectation as much as possible.” Continue reading

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PLEASE BE PATIENT WITH PATIENCE GRAMMAR

This is so hilarious and I had to share it.

When people talk about Patience Faka Jonathan, the first thing that comes to mind is her English.
The fact that she uses pidgin phrases such as “na you waka come” and “diaris God.” People feel that for a first lady in such a high position such language is inexcusable. But I beg to differ…. I will rather have a leader be authentic than hear an amalgamation of British-Indian-American forced accents that have become the norm in our Nigerian society today.

Because the way you talk, the way you pronounce words, the sophistication or the level of complex words you throw together is not a determinant of how intelligent you are, it has never been. That’s why when Patrick Obahiagbon speaks with his big words so complex that Harvard professor’s orgasm it gets lost in translation. Because Nigerians don’t understand him and at the end of the day he makes no sense at all…he sounds stupid.

I mean just flip through your radio dial and you will be hit with a plethora of grammar from American to British to Indian and sometimes ancient Latin, all this while you are still physically in Nigeria. All because we have somehow come to equate big grammar and sophisticated accents with intelligence.

That’s why I really have no issue with Patience grammar, because the first lady represents 170 million Nigerians and not just the so called sophisticated few. So when she speaks in her mixture of pidgin and English plus a strong accent, more Nigerians will understand and connect with her than a Patrick Obiagbon or an OAP’s fabricated accent. And we connect because it comes from a place of authentic understanding. As long as a person knows what they are talking about we would understand … I personally was taught Math’s, English and Science by teachers with strong accents and faulty grammar. We sometimes would laugh and make fun of them when they made grammatical errors but at the end of the day they made us succeed despite the grammar gap. The grammar was not important, it was what they knew in their heads that was important.

Ironically I think the whole pidgin English distracts from the real problem with Patience.
It was never about what she said or did not say at the #diarisGod conference, but rather the timing. It took her 20 plus days to address the issue but only after considerable international pressure. And when she did address it, she made a show of it.

Time and again she has been absent on critical issues that a first lady could help give a voice to…

Where was she when lawmakers were voting to approve under age marriage?
Where was she when students were killed by boko haram in Yobe?
Where was she when the video of the 5 gang rapists went viral?
Where was she when 4 University students aka the ALUU 4 were mobbed?

The answer frankly is nowhere. The criticism of the first lady is not for things she has said but rather for things she has not said! Plus her absence in selfless but important National issues which is a stark contrast to her political activism disruption in states like Rivers.

At the end of the day Nigerians are not looking for a first lady that wears Vera Wang or Calvin Klein, or one that speaks with American-British-Jamaican English and drops big words left right and center. What Nigerians want is a first lady that cares for her people whether the camera is on or off, a first lady that brings issues to the limelight not one that appears after the lime light has been created by others and then tries to hug the lime light. A first lady that is known not for what she says but for what she does, that’s what we need and that’s what we don’t have….yet….

The patience escapades is also a reflection of the standard of education in Nigeria, if the first lady can speak like this, the second citizen of the Nation then I wonder how those underneath would speak. we don’t need to crucify her or nail her, we just need to speak with the presidency to upgrade the standard of education.

Ofili Speaks

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