Four weeks over. We started great group work building up bit by bit our own blog.
So, let’s look back! What have we guys learned from each other?

Steffi, what was your personal best moment of group work up to now?

After my first blog post, I got a text message from Susi. Just a few minutes after I published my writing. She had recognized some mistakes and revised my text. In our group, we do not have to be shy with criticism. The atmosphere is very relaxed; everyone can be honest with the others.

Eva, do you have the same perception?

Yes, definitely. We have a good balance between professionalism and a take-it-easy-attitude. Each one of us manages responsibilities his/her way, but in the end, the result is harmonic. I realize how others approach tasks and try to adapt strategies I like.

Niko, is there anything you learned about yourself and your manner of managing your liabilities in the group?

I realized I am working too fast. But I really like working in a team with women, because their writing is very different from mine. I get a lot of inspiration from that.

Susi, how do you see our way forward? How can we improve?

I think, we still have to find our focus. The blog is beautifully illustrated, but we have to match “BerlinCalling” with what we write. This is somehow difficult, as long as you are blogging about business and IT, but I see how slowly by slowly we make our way.

How do I see things as the team’s reviewer?

Well, I agree with Susi. We have to find our focus, but it’s normal that you figure things out only after a while, especially when you are working in a new team with new methodology. We will get there. Within the next weeks, we could try to enforce blog reference to each other. That could make the whole thing more fluent, more interesting, more professional.


Another four weeks over.

We are approaching the end of the course. Let’s take a look at how far we’ve come. Where we started. What we did. How we did it. How we got where we are now.

Nikolay: Education with ease

First, during the first half of semester, he concentrated on writing posts on the case studies, starting on Zara with “Fast Fashion – Advantages and Disadvantages”, going to Southwest Airlines with “Southwest Airline – Innovation and development”, “What is HTML?” to “7 Eleven vs. Quick Check”.

Afterwards, he decided to write on topics he could profit from by writing and doing research as well as others by reading them. He admits he puts a lot of effort in the course, that’s why he wants “to get a maximum benefit from it”.

Favorite post: Breaking the bad reading habits via “effective reading”, How to enhance your memory

Eva: online service applications and finances

Due to case study of Zara, she started with international expansion management focusing on market entry strategies. Inspired by what she found up to then, she continued on international expansion in relation with CSR.

Cut. She decided on a change of focus: Online Service applications. Free phone call service, comparison of peterzahlt and skype where after some time she decided to skip to the financial focus of business operations.

Favorite post: do u want a ride?  (“First time that it was economic, but still light fare due to its conversational style.”)

Stephanie: everyday inspiration and IT applications

Although Fashion. Food. Fun was case study related; she tried to get away from the preset topic of Zara by linking it to her personal experience. The B[u]ild up factor was due to the anniversary of Bild and thus inspired by her environment. Stephanie states that this happened several times “I read interesting articles somewhere in the newspaper and decided to report about those topics in my next blog posts (e.g. women quotas). Sometimes even weekend activities were used as inspirations as it was the case in the article about the carnival of cultures (which was also Berlin related to our blog’s name).

How to edit the author’s page evoked from a hint of our professor, however, she realized that explaining  IT applications which she made use of by plenty  examples in her free time, was fun to her. This is how also Marvelous websites developed.

In the end, she focused on managers‘ points of views on this path she had found for herself: IT applications.

Susi: Startups – Berlin calling!

Her first blog entry which was related to the Dutta Zara Case Study, Susi tried to link to her own interest: New York (opening of a store on 5th avenue).

Also when we got the case study on Southwest, she tried to bring in her intercultural comprehension abilities she acquired due to several stays in the USA by comparing business models and mentalities back there with those in Germany.

However, Susi found her focus pretty soon: The following three weeks she posted introductions on several start ups in Berlin, some of them due to personal connections to their founders.

While in the beginning, she still focused on the customer’s site, after a while she managed to combine this topic with a manager’s point of view.

Favorite post: Interview  “Haus am See”

Merlin: Waka Waka and camel milk entrepreneurship

Starting with some reflection on fast fashion and art due to the Zara case study, I skipped to a totally different topic in the second: Africa.

It is my huge interest and I had as my personal mantra that in my blog posts, I wanted to introduce my class mates to subjects I assumed they had not (that much) heard about before. This is how I came from African Business to the Triumphal March of mobile phones in Kenya to the topic of camel milk.

In between, due to a general reluctance against too much use of technology, I tried myself on publishing some thoughts on information technology, but I soon realized that this was one of those topics you can Google and find a thousand things and thoughts of other nobodies on so that I concluded that this was not what wanted to expose my class mates to when reading my posts.

That is why I finally got back to camel milk which is just the perfect topic to research on as it is a developing field and there are new studies and approaches every day. It has the potential to both be converted into serious business and help the marginalized people in this world to generate income for their communities. Thus, you can even approach it from three perspectives: Managers, Western customers, customers in its home countries…

Favourite posts: Zara: Copy and Paste. Fast Fashion. , African Business

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