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Philosophy: Exercise in Assumption Scenarios

The Solution is a guide in helping the student put together a Powerpoint presentation tackling the tasks & arguments presented below:
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Prepare a 4 slide PowerPoint Presentation (1 for each scenario)focusing on the questions given in the introduction for each of the scenarios.

For the remaining four scenarios, answer the following questions:
- What are the assumptions underlying this scenario? (List at least five)
- What should the individuals in the scenarios do to validate their assumptions?
- What are some other alternatives available to the individuals in this scenario?
- How would you check the assumptions you believe are being made? (Discuss alternatives)

Scenario One:
Celeste is a wife and mother of two young children. She is in her mid-30s and has decided to go back to work. Her husband, a college professor, works an extra job, and so is tired all the time and does not spend enough time with the family. Celeste wants things to slow down for him. She will put the children in daycare. She'll have a 45-minute commute. The extra money will help Jim give up extra commitments. Economically, they will remain about the same but the burden will now be shared more fairly. She expects these changes will make the family happier.

Scenario Two:
Maria, an instructor of interpersonal skills for managers, has had three sessions with a particular organization. She was told that Neil has not been able to keep a team together for more than three months at a time. She notices that, in her workshops, he lounges with a bored expression and reads the sports pages while she is speaking. She concludes his arrogance and hostility are hurting his performance. She writes him a memo about his behaviors (reading, looking bored, not bothering to contribute and the negative effect it has on the group). She asks him to eliminate these behaviors because she believes his power and prestige will grow.

Scenario Three:
Jeffrey, a manager in his 40s, works for a medium-sized organization in Chicago, and is fed up with work. The problem is not financial, it is that he is not being recognized. The boss recently brought in an outsider to help him at his own expertise. He has applied for other jobs and has been offered one in California. The interviewer flattered him. He felt his qualifications were being highly regarded. He feels that if he takes this new job, he'll clearly be recognized and rewarded.

Scenario Four:
Rod is a single father of three children. He takes his parenting responsibilities very seriously. He is also an independent contractor working out of his home office. He takes his work responsibilities seriously, as well. Although the aspect of having an office at home gives him many opportunities to be involved in his children's lives, the fact of having the job there all the time also causes him to keep working when he should stop--when the kids expect him to be available. The kids continually remind him of the latter case. He believes moving his office out of the house will allow him to balance his efforts between work and family better.

Solution Preview

Here are my suggestions to help you out. Some definitely required a little thought, so I understand your seeking help. I would suggest reading my answers, re-reading the scenarios, and thinking about any other possible answers to these scenarios.

As regards your PowerPoint, this is something you should make easily from my suggestions below. As a helpful pointer, do not become overly indulged in colors, style, and so forth of your presentation. The more colors, effects, and so forth you put in, the more the mind is distracted, and the observers may not retain the information you are giving. Change colors and styles between scenarios only. This serves to transition between scenarios and it makes the mind more attentive. If you need extra help, please let me know.

Scenario One:
Celeste is a wife and mother of two young children. She is in her mid-30s and has decided to go back to work. Her husband, a college professor, works an extra job, and so is tired all the time and does not spend enough time with the family. Celeste wants things to slow down for him. She will put the children in daycare. She'll have a 45-minute commute. The extra money will help Jim give up extra commitments. Economically, they will remain about the same but the burden will now be shared more fairly. She expects these changes will make the family happier.
1. The general assumptions here are; 1. The family is not happy. 2. Celeste needs to work to bring her husband more peace. 3. Her extra commitments and time away from home will not affect the family. 4. Having the children in daycare will help the family. 5. Although no economic benefit occurs, for some reason the family will be better.
2. In order to validate the assumptions, the family will have to measure two things. First, that the essence of the problem is really Jim's absence from family life. Second, that removing Celeste and the children from the house will create a better family ...

Solution Summary

The solution explains different scenarios in assumptions.

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