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QUESTION 1

MEETING ONE

I just managed to make it to the meeting on time given it had been raining heavily that afternoon.
After a few pleasantries and introductions, we got to discuss the project with the mentor. I told
the mentor I wanted to undertake topic 6 and he asked me to justify my choice. I stated that I felt
it would not be too difficult or involve a lot of work, and his response was that I should evaluate
a lot of issues before selecting a research topic.Those tutor required me will state what my most
loved child units were Furthermore if i comprehended great factors that rouse workers what's
more entryway i might gather the information. Clinched alongside retrospect, i understood i
might have been utilizing the off methodology What's more went In those topics once more. He
offered me a portion the long run should assess those topics What's more a chance to be indeed
for my selection, after seeing the thing that the topics required. I understood i necessary on
decide a theme i might have been verwoerd agreeable with Furthermore which i might return
substantial Furthermore dependable information Also majority of the data. It struck me, then
afterward finishing An examination toward oneself and Comprehension my qualities which
might have been On analytics What's more Comprehension numbers, that the point i needed
decided might have been generally not suiting will my qualities also others i changed should
subject 8. On resuming my meeting with the mentor, I explained why I had changed the topic.
The mentor further told me how to plan and undertake the research, stressing on the need to have
SMART objectives and research questions and focus the research on those. I also learned the
need for choosing suitable and SMART objectives and research questions; previously, I though
setting research objectives was just a formality, rather than the blue print of the entire research.
This was a great eye opener for me and gave me a huge paradigm shift on doing research; the
meeting also taught me valuable research skills.

MEETING 2

In this meeting, I presented my first research draft; i had sent the mentor a copy in advance for
his perusal. He made several notes, including on sentence structure and was particularly
concerned that I had not supported my arguments in the financial and ratio analysis adequately.
Further, I had put more emphasis on explaining trends, which he said was good but ultimately,
not what the project requires. The mentor explained that I needed to describe the trends briefly,
then delve on the ‘why’ and ‘how’; why did the observed trends happen, what were the causes
and cite my sources. From the meeting, I learned the value of researching widely, what analysis
of financial statements really involves, why annual reports are a treasure trove of information,
and the need to cite my sources of information. Previously I made several assumptions, including
on citations and though computing ratios and describing them was enough. I also learned how to
write concise arguments to save on space because the project has strict word limits.

MEETING 3

This meeting required me making a presentation and giving my final document for review. As a
highly social person, making a presentation was never going to be a challenge for me; and I felt
ready for it. I made the presentation to the mentor, four other staff members at their college and
other students doing the research project; it went smoothly and I explicitly explained my main
points; apparently I was so self-absorbed that I lost track of time and was not keenly aware of the
crowd reactions. At the end, I asked the audience to ask any questions, make comments, or seek
clarifications. This presentation improved my skills on how to make PowerPoint presentations,
the value of non-verbal communication, planning and effective time management, and above all,
buttressed my confidence in public speaking.

QUESTION 2

The first meeting gave me a new and completely different outlook on research, especially how to
develop research questions and define my objectives. I took time to study how research aims and
objectives are developed and what kind of questions, when answered, will meet the research
objectives. I went to the ACCA website, based on my mentors’ advice, and printed the
information pack and read through it. I made sure I understood what every part of the project
required and what skills are required. Further, I employed the relevant business techniques and
tools for the research, including the use of ratios to analyze the financial performance of my
chosen organization as well as the SWOT to evaluate the internal and external dynamics that
impacted on the business performance of the organization, and by extension, its financial
performance. With these tools, I researched widely t6o get relevant scholarly content, after
having determined a suitable research approach and research methodology. Using these tools and
approach helped define the scope and depth of my research, and enabled me to focus on
achieving the objectives of my research and the research questions helped me fully answer the
research questions. A systematic approach to my research, using suitable research methods and
approach, as well as relevant business and accounting tools and techniques ensured that I was
able to meet the objectives of my research. In concluding my research, I summarized the entire
research in the form of answering the research questions, demonstrating that I met my objectives
fully. I did my research fully cognizant of the limitations of the research and ethical issues; these
helped me focus on the scope of the research and ultimately, enabled me to answer the research
questions satisfactorily. I also consulted other scholars and works extensively and used the
information so obtained to support my arguments. I believe this systematic approach has enabled
me to fully meet my research objectives and answer the research questions exhaustively, in
addition to the valuable guidance by my mentor.

QUESTION 3

The downside to this character, as I found out during meetings with the mentor and other
colleagues, is that I tend to talk a lot and on many occasions, dominate conversations, something
that adversely affects effective communication. In the first meeting, I spoke a lot and
passionately about why I chose topic six, and on many occasions interrupted the mentor when he
was making a point. He even suggested that I should adjust my communication skills to include
listening, as it was an equally important part of the communication process. This was an eye
opener for me, and subsequently, led me to improve how I communicated with people, showing
patience and giving others time to have their say as well. Despite the downside, I was able to
effectively communicate with the mentor and had very fruitful discussions that helped me
achieve my research objectives and complete the project successfully. I have a penchant for
inquiring and asking questions; this helped me get valuable information during the research,
especially from my mentor. I am a confident person and this was demonstrated in how I got to
build rapport with the mentor and even had fruitful discussions with other students and staff
members at the mentors’ college. During my presentation in the third meeting, I was not fazed by
the prospect of making a presentation to an audience that had people more knowledgeable in
matters accounting than me. For me, it was another opportunity to interact with people and build
relationships. I was able to interact with people of diverse religions, socio-economic
backgrounds, and even gender and political convictions seamlessly and without conflict. I
managed to overcome some barriers through effective communication, greatly helped by my
mentor who advised me on the need for keen listening. Nonverbal communication has been
something new for me in this research project; I am now able to get and give nonverbal cues for
highly effective communication, especially after making my final presentation. I was able to
concisely and explicitly explain myself and my research, as well as my findings, with no one
having any questions or seeking clarifications at the end of it, and even getting appreciated for
the clarity of my presentation.

QUESTION 4

The present work environment is highly competitive and dynamic, requiring knowledge of skills
in analysis and how to apply various tools for analysis and decision making. Undertaking this
research project has improved my skills in research, setting objectives, applying business and
accounting tools, seeking information, especially from the internet, and using these to gain
crucial insights into the business and financial performance of an organization. I now understand
external factors better and know how changes in the external environment and internal factors
(strengths and weaknesses) can impact the business and financial performance of an
organization. Working in the hospitality industry requires constant monitoring of the external
environment and adjusting accordingly to remain competitive. I had for a long time believed that
I only needed soft skills to succeed in this industry but this project has taught me that while soft
people skills are important, having the right technical skills in business and financial analysis and
using various business and accounting tools can greatly aid in making the correct decisions. I
now have a balanced skill set that will no doubt help me in my present job and career and help
me fulfill my career ambitions in senior management and decision making. I am now
comfortable with management accounting principles, and have greatly improved my research
and communication skills, courtesy of this research project