CINQ Blog #3 Case 2

Step 1: Determine the facts in the situation – obtain all of the unbiased facts possible

  1. Jack is in Kenya for 5 months
  2. Center for former street youth
  3. Jack was the gift distributor because he was a guest
  4. Gifts were from a separate donor
  5. The kids thought that Jack got the kids the gifts
  6. 4 kids didn’t get gifts and blamed Jack
  7. The 4 kids without gifts were unhappy
  8. The 4 kids got a black hat at the end
  9. Jack wants a good relationship with the kids and the center
  10. The people at the community center don’t care that the kids didn’t get gifts
  11. (Jack is Steve Suffian)

Step 2: Define the problem and the stakeholders

– those with a vested interest in the outcome
The problem is that 4 kids did not get gifts during a ceremony, and were given black hats afterward (unceremoniously)


  1. Jack
  2. Kids
    1. with and without gifts
  3. The Center and employees
  4. Funders of the gifts
  5. Funders of Jack’s venture

Step 3: Determine and distinguish between the personal and professional motivations of the stakeholders.

  1. Jack
    1. Personal: He wants to be liked
    2. Professional, wants to have a good long term relationship with the children while he is in Kenya.
  2. Kids who didn’t get the gifts: Everyone wants to be recognized in the ceremony and receive the same gifts
    1. Personal: No one wants to be left out,
    2. Professional: NA
  3. Kids who did receive gifts
    1. Personal: Feel superior to other kids who didn’t get gifts, might make fun of other children
    2. Professional: NA
  4. The center
    1. Personal: think Jack is dramatic and they just want to stop being bothered, might be offended if Jack comes in and criticizes them.
    2. Professional: They don’t want Jack to become a children’s rights activist → criticism for things that they are doing because they are working with what they have, they want to focus on bigger problems in the center and don’t want Jack to get in the way of their larger goal
  5. Funders of gifts
    1. Professional: Want to maintain a good reputation and a good relationship with the center for future gift-giving which is really just a form of publicity.
  6. Funders of Jack’s venture
    1. Professional: don’t want him to get sent home or be unable to do his work and lose their investment

Step 4: Formulate (at least three) alternative solutions – based on information available, to have a win-win situation for your relationship and your venture.

  1. Solution one: Jack can approach the children separately and give them real gifts by themselves – privately don’t involve the center
  • How does it solve the problem?
    o Pros: kids have the gifts
    o Cons: this will not improve their standing with the other children because it is not in the ceremony
  • How does it save face of those involved: Jack saves face with the children they will like him now
  • Implications on relationships
    o Short-term: kids will be happy and have a good relationship with Jack
    o Long-term: they might still feel awkward that they were left out and have strained relationships with the other kids
  • Implications on the venture
    o Short-term: kids more willing to take part in his study and may give better anecdotal evidence
    o Long-term: would need to get to the root of the problem – why did they withhold info from him?
  1. Solution two: Hold another non-related party but have Jack present those 4 kids gifts
  • How does it solve the problem?
    o Pros: kids will get the gifts ceremoniously and be recognized in front of their friends
    o Cons: kids might be embarrassed
  • How does it save face of those involved: children are saved face because they are given gifts in front of their friends, Jack saves face with the children
  • Implications on relationships
    o Short-term: Kids will be happy
    o Long-term: center might feel overlooked and resentful Jack worked around them
  • Implications on the venture
    o Short-term: it will be costly to buy new gifts and throw a new party
  • o Long-term: could harm the professional relationship between Jack and the children and Jack might have trouble continuing the work
  1. Solution Three: Do not give the children gifts
  • How does it solve the problem?
    o Pros: no cost and the center is left unbothered.
    o Cons: kids are sad and don’t get gifts   (aka it doesn’t solve the problem)
  • How does it save face of those involved – the center does not have to deal with Jack. There is no awkwardness of receiving gifts later
  • Implications on relationships
    o Short-term: kids may not like Jack or the center
    o Long-term: kids might be less willing to work with Jack and help him accomplish his goals
  • Implications on the venture
    o Short-term 4 kids are upset still but other kids probably don’t care
    o Long-term the center will be happy you obeyed them, con- might be more confident in rolling over Jack in the future

Step 5: Seek additional assistance, as appropriate – previous cases, peers, reliance on personal experience, inner reflection

Some of us have met “Jack” at Mountaintop and know that he is a nice person, and think that he would want the children to receive gifts.

Personall experience with day care or nanny-ing kids get over stuff pretty quickly but in the short term irritating younger children can make them incredibly hard to work with.

Step 6: Select the best course of action – that solves the problem, saves face and has the best short- term and long-term implications for your relationship and venture. Explain reasoning and discuss your solution vis-a-vis other approaches discussed in class.

Solution 1: it won’t harm Jack’s relationship with the center like solution 2 would. The kids will like Jack and be willing to work with him over the next 5 months and the other children who did receive gifts will be indifferent. He needs to have good relations with both the center and the kids and this solution makes that possible. Solutions 2 and 3 each only saved face for Jack in the eyes of the kids or the center but not both. However, in this scenario the kids wouldn’t save face in front of the other kids while this was part of the problem kids should quickly get over this and still treat each other well, it is more important that the kids don’t resent Jack. Though Jack risks annoying the center or causing further complications if he is careful he won’t do this and additionally, he won’t continue to feel guilty which is how he would feel if he did nothing.

Step 7: List the sequence of actions you will take to implement your solution. 

  1. Jack will buy the gifts
  2. The gifts cannot be of greater value than the gifts the other children revised or this would cause further problems
  3. Jack will give the children gift without the center being involved or seeing
  4. Jack will explain to the children he was not responsible for them not getting gifts in the first place
  5. Jack will tell the children that the center also paid for the kids gifts and jack was giving them out regardless of whether or not this is true.

This scenario allows for the center and Jack to save face. The kids will feel less slighted by both Jack and the shelter and improve their professional relationships. Jack will have to buy the gifts with his own money which is a con considering economics but knowing Jack he is in a position where that won’t be a huge problem for him. The gifts also should not be expensive or worth anything, they are just symbolic. If the gifts were nicer and useful this would make the other children jealous and set the wrong precedent for Jack and his professional relationship with the children. Here the 4 children will be less upset with j=Jack and additionally not blame the center. The center won’t know Jack intervened as it will now be a non-issue if Jack is laid back and casual while tactful about his approach to the situation. This solution won’t impact the funders of jacks venture or the funders of the origonal gifts. Jack and the kids will be impacted and hopefully if all goes to plan the center will not be.

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