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Everything posted by Red

  1. I would ask her to tell her story. I love hearing sucessfull people tell the story of their road to sucess. Their thoughts and all the obstacels they fought through. And who would be more fascinating than Ayn Rand?
  2. I'm far from an expert on relationships but I have always found it better to start from the other side of that coin. Find out what your wants and needs are, and communicate that to the other person. Then you can listen to the other persons wants and needs, and see if you match. Or put in a different way: Don't start by looking at others, start by making yourself visible first. I've found this to be very powerfull in all kinds of relationships. An interesting thing psychologically is that people will also want to reciprocate, because it gives them a chance to be valued. In the same way that you may take great pleasure in helping a friend, because it means you have something valuable to offer.
  3. I'm not sure about the specifics on my colleagues position (I was just trying to challenge her to see how she would respond). Part of the risk the creditor takes that the debtor may never be able to pay back. So the creditor takes a calculated risk, which may or may not have been reckless. When it backfires, should the creditor be able to bind the debtor to the contract for the rest of the debtors life? Analogies can be made to regular contract law where in many legal systems binding someone to a contract for a liftetime is not allowed (in swedish contract law such terms could probably be adjusted for being unreasonable). I must add that so far i'm undecided on the issue. I haven't finished thinking about it yet.
  4. Pay back the debt as quickly as possible while minimizing your losses. If you fail to make the creditors happy they can take legal action where the priorities are made according to law. I'd like to flip the coin a little bit here. A while ago I was discussion my issues with debt sanitation laws (similar to personal bankruptcy law in the US) with a collegue (I work in debt enforcement). I find it unfair that the creditors can lose their right to enforce the debts, However, she made good point that I find difficult to answer. What about the creditors responsibilities? Would it be responsible to borrow money to someone who runs a high risk of defaulting on the loan? By accepting that risk, would it be unfair if the creditor lost the money?
  5. Happy Birthday to Red

    Thank you!
  6. In Sweden we have a type of national test that can be taken as a means to get into college. The test has two parts, one math and one language/reading comprehension. I took the test once last year, and another attempt yesterday. I think I got a full score on the language part, but both times i've struggled with the math. Although math isn't my strongest ability i've never been bad at it before. Last year I got a decent score, and I came unprepared to the test with a high fever. This time I expected it to go a lot better, but I actually managed to get a significantly lower score. Thought it went better when I took the test, but no... I've found two main problems. Number one is that i'm just too slow. Working things through in my own pace meant I ran out of time half way through. On top of that I haven't done this type of math in 14 years. That means some quite signifcant gaps in my knowledge. Unfortunately the disaster on the math part probably puts me just below the minimum score (with 0.5 points!) to get into law school. That's quite annoying. The next test is this fall, and i'm going to get a full score. The math part is fairly simple high school math. There's some geometry, quadtratic equations, equation systems and problem solving. Not really that complex. Anyhow, I have two questions relating to this: Do you know of any good books and resources that can be usefull to learn this? And, do you know anything of a more general nature? I'd like to read up more on math just for the fun of it. Maybe a better understanding of math could be usefull some day, and it's a fun way to exercise the little grey cells.
  7. Practicing math

    That's a good idea, however there's only been three tests since they introduced the new one. The old ones still offer some practice, but the math was a lot easier. Atleast for grumpy old men like me, who practiced high school math a hundred years ago. The math on the old test was much easier to solve using simple logic. I agree about timed tests. I want to do a thorough job and produce something good if i'm going to put my name on it. Like the last test I did in law. I'd like to burn it and destroy any evidence that it existed, even though I got a high score. I don't take classes to become good at taking tests. I take classes to become good at the subject. Returning tests with simplistic answers is a waste of time, and there's no pride in passing a test when you know the standards are set so low. In this case the math itself is fairly simple, you just need to know it. Then the time factor makes it so that you need to know it with minimum thought involved. Even the time on the verbal test was a challenge, and I dare say i'm very good at that. Anyway, this isn't to say I didn't mess up. I should have done better. The good thing is that it makes me pissed enough to aim for a full score on the whole test next time (there are nine people who have managed that, so it's possible).
  8. Practicing math

    There's one book that I know of, and it's underwhelming. The examples are good but there's not much more than that. Running a fever is a risky tactic. You need to develop the kind of fever where you get into this creative state, and then figure out your own mathematical rules. When I did that test they had just changed the math part of it. On previous tests there wasn't much to prepare for. I figured i'd brush up on my math and then i'd be fine, but I got sick. My first look at the test was a "oh bleep!" moment, when I realized I had forgotten all of the math. That's when you need to get creative. I have no idea how I managed to get such a good result (one standard deviation above the mean must be good under those circumstances). I'm even more surprised how I got a worse result after making preparations.
  9. That's a good idea. Talking to the professors. I wish I could manage three hours of sleep a night, but i'd completely lose my marbles. I'm looking at how to manage law school and a full time job, not wanting to compromise any of them. The biggest problem is the lectures and seminars where you have to attend. The school board tells me you can't skip that, but the professors may be easier to negotiate with. Speaking of wich, perhaps I can offer a little advice or reassurance to Olivier. If you can manage the practical details like attending enough classes, then it's a matter of "just do it". Being two places at once is impossible, but making time to study is not. I've been studying and working full time, with lots of overtime, for the last 6 months. Because I don't have to attend any classes it's actually quite easy. Of course there has been a few all nighters and times where i've had to lug books around everywhere I go, so I have enough time to read, but most of the time it's not a problem at all. The most important thing is being able to manage your time. For example when you work during the day and study on weekends and evenings, that's easy. It's a lot harder if you need to attend two classes at once. Find a way around that problem, if you can, and go for it!
  10. Wow! That's impressive! How did you manage all those things at once? Have you found a cure for sleep?
  11. Thank you! This is so exciting - I can't wait to start!
  12. My employer has just posted and opening for a new job. I've been preparing for this oppurtunity for almost three years now, and the last couple of months have been sleepless knowing this would come up. I'm fervent about it, and I would be exceptionally good for the position. Now it's just a matter of getting there... The CV just needs to be updated - not much to do there. I'm not really worried about an interview; just show up on time, be well dressed, and the rest will take care of itself. To get there though, I need a good personal letter to present myself with. That's something I always struggle with. I think a good letter should be brief, show what value you bring, why you want the job and sell you to the employer(while being authentic, of course). Avoid the typical clich├ęs and back up every claim with concrete examples. Usually when I write it either looks like something straight out of kindergarten("Hi, my name is Red. I'm sixteen and a half and I like pancakes...") or a small novel. Any tips would be greatly appreciated, especially if you have tips on structure and process.
  13. I had an interview a couple of weeks ago. Thought it went well. Then I got a call today.... NAILED IT! Got the job!
  14. Thanks again! I sent the application on wednesday, following the suggested format. I think it turned out really well. I had lots of things I could have written, but this focused only on the essentials: Showing them that I understand what the job is about and what they want, that I have the skills/ability they value (without going into any details) and that I really want it. Simple, brief and focused, and enough to get their interest. I like that. My boss also adviced against trying to tell them just how good I am. Told me they're going to give him a call anyway, so he'll take care of that. Plus it adds more credibility coming from him. Having good credibility is very important here. Every decision must be right and mistakes can really make the stuff hit the fan. Selling myself too hard could be taken as over-confidence or lack of judgement. I figured those things will show through anyway when I get to talk to them. I designed the CV the same way. Just one page, two collumns, and a clean layout. Wrote a short "profile", only mentioned relevant work experience, education and skills that apply for the job. For the references though, I did put my bosses there. The reason was just simple convenience. I know they're going to call them, so now they don't have to search through the very annyoing company phone book. Yesterday I had a brief chat with one of the team managers, and a longer conversation with the section manager(the process basically works so that the team managers decide on who they want, and then suggests those to the section manager). The team manager already knows me a little bit and seemed very positive. Then I spent about 45 minutes getting to know the section manager. It went really well. Very easy to talk to and seemed like on of those guys who's really competent and loves his job. I think my chances are looking good and I have high hopes.
  15. I should have it in writing next week. I like the thought of money in the bank... better start collecting more written references. I've seen claims from experts that you should avoid putting more than three references in you resume. Is that true? My references so far are: Four of my bosses, that i've worked directly with. Two of them current and the other two used to be team managers for the same position. The three ladies mentioned above. One of our lawyers. She works as a legal back up for us, among other things. Since we work at different offices our communication has mostly been phone and email, but we've met and worked together on a few occasions(and talked each others ears off ) My college teacher whom i've asked vouch for my performance on her course. Since this position requires one year of training, with some college courses, I think it's good to have someone vouch for that ability. I could put more names on the list, but they don't know me that well.
  16. Hehe, and I here I wanted to make the exact opposite impression - that I do want to stay and not just pass through. I understand though that I need to stay focused on the present. And while having future ambitions within the same organization, the hiring managers interest is to have me on that position. I've just learned how very important that is to them as well. They're trying to solve their recruiting problems by focusing on people who really want that job(and not just something nice to put in their resume). By the way, today I had such a great confidence boost that I just have to tell you about it. A few weeks ago we had a couple of days education, because we're taking over - or helping with - some new tasks. This is part of the work i'll be doing when I get that new position. The tutors were three charming ladies, showing us the ropes and making sure there are no legal issues. I might add that their position carries a lot of authority. Anyhow, I ran into them in the cafeteria today. They'd just come for a quick visit, immediately recognized me and we started chatting. Apparently i've made a very good impression. They offered to give a letter of recommendation and told me I could put their names as references in my application. Oh, and they also suggested I should move to another city so I could work at their office. I had no idea I made such an impression on them. From what I recall I was just there being me; listening, asking questions and engaging them in interesting conversations when we had breaks. Talk about a positive surprise! I'm thrilled to get such endorsement.
  17. I think i'm going to borrow that and show it to our chief executive next time I see her. She will be impressed. Seriously though, that was very interesting. It gives me few ideas i'll have to ponder(and no, I will not mention bombs and mortars in my resume ).
  18. Oh yes! Spelling, grammar and punctuation will be perfect. I'm also taking great care to have a good page layout, perfect margins, line spacing and font(which will be formal, with a subtle elagance, and read well on both print and display). Details are important.
  19. By the way, what do you think about mentioning future ambitions? My goal is to work there for a few years, probably advancing to some management position, while going through law school. When i'm done I want to work there as a lawyer.
  20. Not sure if people are getting dumber, but they can sure be pretty stupid sometimes. I encounter it several times daily at work: Me: "Hello, this is Red. What can I help you with?" Caller: "I just got this letter from you..." Me: "Yes...?" Caller: "Well, why have you sent this to me!?" Me: "I don't know. What does it say?" Caller: "I haven't opened it yet!" -- "Hi Red, i'm trying to fill out this form - order to pay. Can you help me?" "Sure, what do you need help with?" "It says here 'applicant(creditor)', what do I put there?" "So, you're the one sending the application/order?" "Yes..." "Then you should put your name and details there..." "Oh... A while later... "What's capital amount and interest?" A long while later... "Oh, bottom of the page now. It asks for name and signature. Do I put my name there?" --- Last week a solicitor called to ask how the court could have issued a default decision on a case we sent over to them only a few days ago. Even more confusing was how the default decision had a completely different plaintiff. It took over 10 minutes to explain that it was two completely different cases. Sometimes I don't know wether to laugh or cry. Simple stupidity I can deal with though. The worst thing is the refusal to think in other than basic concretes. For example when some co-workers come to me with complex questions, I start to explain it until there's a blank stare followed by a; "can't you just tell me yes or no?". Perhaps it's the schools fault. For some people thinking seems to have become a terrible burden. It's like they have never experienced the joy of learning, understanding and solving difficult problems. Instead they regard it as useless and cumbersome, and make every effort to supress their conciousness.
  21. I love that format - thank you! I have a couple of questions here: The first is, what's the best way to point out performance/results that are not so easily measurable? I know they're looking for someone who can make independent decisions and produce good results. The biggest value i've brought to my current position is by supervising and tutoring new employees, generally getting others to perform better(I have a great knowledge and i'm a good leader), solving problems and helping to develop the organization. My days are usually spent being in a million places at once. None of that is measured though, so it's difficult to point to any statistics(there are of course some statistics that I can show, but they'll just give you a little bit of the whole picture). So aside from doing my own things well i've also managed to lift everyone else up. (Regarding that part it's one of the things I look forward to in the new position. Currently it's a bit like doing those things with your hands tied behind your back, because that part of the organization is very inflexible. The new position is the opposite, with a lot more freedom and responsibility) The other question is regarding the reference to my CV. What about changing that to "talk to my boss", or something along those lines? I think my best qualification is my work. Looking at the CV's i'm sure they can find someone who's worked there longer and have better academic merits. But I doubt there's anyone who's built a "stronger brand", and i've done that by being good at exactly the things i'll work with in the new position. Jeez, I might just have written a small essay. Anyway, thank you so much for your tips!
  22. What's GOOD in your life?

    Thanks! I think that's the best one too. If there's one shot i'd put my name and reputation on, it's that one. My other two favorites are the horse and the drawing. Gosh, I really need to free up some time so I can produce some new stuff....
  23. What's GOOD in your life?

    Thank you, and yes I do! I have a page on flickr that I try to update whenever I have something new(the last one is the model shoot which was in september, I think, so there's some time between updates). You need to register an account on flickr(it's free) to see all photos. There's some nudity so a few of them are tagged as not safe for work, and only visible for members. I hope there's something you like.
  24. How would you judge this?

    I can see how that makes sense in certain situations. For example: Let's say I hire you for a position in Red Ltd. A few days after our interview I call you over to my office to sign some papers. I present you with a contract. Standard procedure, but sit down, have a cup of coffee, and read it through carefully to make sure everything is as we agreed upon. You sign it, everything seems fine, but later you notice an ambiguity... In such a case I would say the mistake is on me. I drafted and presented you with the contract. It's reasonable to expect me to be very familiar with it, while you may have carefully read it a few times. However, other types of contracts may have been built through negotiations. They are passed back and forth, and get carefully reviewed by both parties. In such cases the party that drafted the contract could be just a formality. They were the last ones to "touch it" before it got signed.
  25. How would you judge this?

    I found this case when I started this new course in law. A big part of the course is to delve deeper into contracts and agreements. The case is interesting in regerads to certain problems in judging contracts and what actual agreements have been made. Swedish contract law is a hodgepodge of old legislature, precedent cases, trade customs and analogous judgements from trade and international law. It's been likened to a black box where you put in a contract and through some kind of process inside the box, which no one understands, it spits out a result. This case outlines the problem between judging based on what's specifically written in the contract, or the actual will or intention of the parties. I would personally be inclined towards judging it withing "the four sides of the paper". Meaning, you have specific and written statement that both parties have agreed upon. However, there are atleast a couple of problems with that approach. Context can change the actual meaning of the words, and the specific words used can change the actual meaning of the contract. Now, contrast that against trying to determine the intent of the parties, and you have the risk of a subjective ruling. Here's an example of how a small change of words can effect the meaning of a contract. Let's say you sign up for a loan to buy a house. One contract states that "late payments on interest and amortization gives the bank the right to demand full payment of the loan". Change that to "late payments on interest OR amortization...". Those statements have quite a different meaning. In this case there's a question between the context and what's actually written in the contract. This is a simplified summary of a real case. I'll give you the courts decision later: CMR has received a consultant assignment from Flextronics. The assignment is to create network traffic sales within Flextronics enterprise area. CMR gets paid a flat monthly fee plus a bonus: * Bonus is paid after reaching a sales volume of 10Mkr. * The bonus is calculated on 3% on products and services * The maximum bonus is 1Mkr. * Bonus entitled volumes are all sales The flat fee and the percentage of the bonus was later re-negotiated, giving the consultant a higher percentage in order to incite him more. CMR sued Flextronics for not paying enough bonus. They claimed that according to contract the bonus should be calculated on a percentage of all of Flextronics sales. Flextronics total sales volume amounting to some 50BKr. Should the court dislike that, they claimed a percentage of all of Flextronics enterprise sales - again an amount that would far exceed the maximum bonus of 1Mkr. Flextronics claimed that "all sales" referred to all the sales that CMR created within the enterprise market - an amount that did not reach the bonus limit of 1Mkr. How would you have judged this case, and why?