Category Archives: Articles in English

Once in a lifetime…

Opportunity knocked at my door. Opportunity is not only about money, getting a job or finding an investor. To me, opportunity was this time, the chance to spoil my emotions and  this is what happened.

I am a huge fan of Jeremy Ragsdale. If you don’t know him yet, I will make the introductions. Jeremy is an American voice coach at “Jeremy Ragsdale Voice Studio” located in Annapolis, Maryland. He never tried any musical contest but he definitely loves music. He decided to learn a Latin language and more precisely, Romanian language. He didn’t know anybody in Romania but somehow he felt attracted to it. Not by somebody, not by something…just attracted so, after a few classes of Romanian language he came to visit Romania. Arriving in Bucharest, he found himself lonely in the middle of an unknown place and all he needed to improve his language skills were some friends. Being a music lover, his first thought was to search on Google for a Karaoke club in Bucharest and make some friends with the same interests. The first Google response was “Tunes Pub”, and that, represented the beginning of a new life for Jeremy. He made some friends, all amazed by his voice. They advised Jeremy to try his chance at X Factor. That was not the reason Jeremy came to Romania, but he registered to X Factor and won the contest.  It was the first foreign act to win the X Factor in Romania. This may happen once in a lifetime. Now you know a few things about Jeremy so I can continue my story.

I am a fan X Factor and I could not believe my ears when Jeremy had his first audition. I am the only X Factor’s fun in my family but at that time I was able to scare my son and my husband because while Jeremy was singing I expected them to stop doing whatever they were doing, stop talking, stop walking, stop moving…Maybe they thought: “Crazy mother, crazy wife”…but this is life when your emotions start dancing. From that moment on, they become interested in Jeremy’s acts. My madness amazed them…and Jeremy as well. WHAT A VOICE….

On February 10th, Jeremy had his first solo performance, here in Bucharest (after X Factor), at “Tunes Pub”. My husband and I decided to attend this event and as soon as we entered the pub, I saw Alexandra Crisan. I was so happy. Alexandra was my favorite singer from X Factor contest in 2014. I have never heard anybody singing the way she did (or even closer), “Purple rain” or “Someone like you”. Her voice talks to my soul, face to face…I have no idea how to express the way I feel when Alexandra is singing, in a better way.  I went to Alexandra and I hugged her, like I hug an old friend after a long “no see” time.  She might’ve thought the same: “Crazy mother, crazy wife” :-))

In short time Jeremy started his performance. How was Jeremy’s act??? Awesome, wonderful, magnificent, overwhelming…you already got it. My emotions were running up and down stairs. I had cardio activity, sitting on chair and not even blinking, I laughed, I cried, I pass through all possible emotional stages, just listening to Jeremy’s voice. Ok….I blinked but only when my mascara started to drain on my face. I have no idea what I did with my hands, I wave them above my head and a picture framed on the wall landed on my head. Thank God I did not ruin anything. Jeremy has the ability to take you to another world and it’s not only the voice helping him to do so. It is also Jeremy’s personality. Kind, generous, sincere, sociable, shearing happiness even he is not happy all the time. He has an enormous potential as a singer. This is why I like to call him DIAMONDsdale. A masive diamond. This is his real value. At least this is his value to me and my family. I felt that every sound or word, comes straight from the heart and his heart seems to be as beautiful as his voice. To us, being there at that moment, at Tunes, was nothing but a great opportunity. We are sure that it’s just a matter of time for Jeremy to become worldwide known and not only known but appreciated for what he is. We wish him so. We wish the same to Alexandra. Great voices in a small pub…or how we use to say, strong essences are kept in small bottles.

One of Jeremy’s performance @ Tunes was “I put a spell on you”.  I love this song so on our way home, I put the spell on my husband over and over again. Than, I tried to explain him that “I feel good” and this is the reason I behave this way. I told him he is lucky the weather is nice and is not raining. It could’ve come a purple rain.☺. He said: I think you’re Crazy, just like me, and hugged me. “When a man loves a woman” as my husband does, and he supported her for more than 27 years, one more night of singing on the street, does not mean a thing. “This is a men’s word” but what would it be without a woman or a girl, right?  This is why, he accepted me as I am….a bunch of walking emotions. To offer him some comfort, I went in my room and I started to write this article. I wanted to share with you this wonderful experience.

Something that you can feel once in a lifetime…





CNN Money presents us an interesting way of decreasing a company’s brand equity. Not a difficult way to do it.

In UK the 400 g of Toblerone chocolate bar was reduced to 360 g and the 170 g bar was reduced o 150g. All they change for those bars is weight. Taste, pack, price and all chocolate bar dimensions except weight, are not changed.

So, you, as a chocolate lover, buy with the same amount of money less chocolate but you will be able to find out only after you buy it because everything looks like before. When you open the bar, you will find out that one triangular segment out of two is missing. On Toblerone Facebook page, consumers complain about the way they were cheated. They consider that this reduction of weight with no other changes of the package is designed to fool people into thinking they are buying the same quantity of chocolate as before. Toblerone said that they have announced a weight reduction in Toblerone bars due to rising of production costs. 

With an UK experience of “taking one out” like Reliant did with Robin which produced the 3 wheel car, now Toblerone strikes back to prove its consumers that they can do the same with chocolate.

Consumers understand the “shrinkflation” as a Brexit result but they do not understand why the company was not making clear that they have a situation and share the result of it without giving  the impression of cheating.

One marketing mistake might be responsible for the decrease return in customer loyalty, based on luck of trust.

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Posted by on November 14, 2016 in Articles in English


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Romanians deserve a better BRAND

Fooled by first impression?

“A lot of critics are lazy. They don’t want to look closely and analyze something for what it is. They take a quick first impression and then rush to compare it to something they’ve seen before.”
Willem Dafoe


I was flying back home to Bucharest, Romania, from a short vacation in Sweden. Next to me I saw a lady that seems to be nice, and open to a conversation. I am a sociable person, I love to talk and find out more about other people but I cannot do that every time I fly because not everybody is as sociable as me, but at that time…I had been lucky so I decided to introduce myself to the passenger sitting next to me. That was the beginning of 3 hours conversation I will never forget. I have to thank for this to you Isabell and to you Micke. It was a great pleasure to meet you.

Most of the time when I am telling people that I am Romanian, I can see a mixture of feelings glittering in their eyes. Mercy, hate, disappointment, but I could never feel what I wanted and what I deserve to feel. My brand as a Romanian needs some changes. I am Canadian as well. Telling people I am Canadian their mixture of feelings seems to be different and is all about appreciation, curiosity, enjoyment. I am wondering why.  I am the same person. Considering the time I spent in each country I can say that I am Romanian first and Canadian afterwards.
In this case, most of people judgments comes from the image they have formed about a culture, a nation. And how can people create this image…??? Watching TV, reading newspapers and counting the “Romanian citizens” that use to bag on the streets of their countries. And here we go: a nation of criminals, a bunch of dangerous people, poor, etc.

I am addressing this letter to everybody and mostly to people that work in media. Please turn your TV on and watch the news…Now tell me please did you find in media any story about GOOD RESULTS, about people that make Romanians proud?? I can mostly see “VIP ‘s” or what is now considered to be VIP. I would translate a Romanian VIP as a “siliconated” person, able to attract man’s attention using everything but brain. Dear journalists as long as we keep promoting silicon instead of brain, we will never get the result we deserve as a nation. Our brand as Romanians is not perceived at its real value. You can change this perception better and faster that we can do as citizens. All you have to do is to concentrate on good things as well.  Please try ! I would like to feel great telling people I am Romanian. And only because we worth it. We are a great nation, with valuable people, with wonderful results unfortunately this wonderful people we can use as examples in our life, are less promoted or not promoted at all and in this case unfortunately “what you see is what you get”. While I was in Sweden I saw a few “Romanians” making me feel ashamed. I can tell about them because the others, that make our nation proud, I couldn’t see. They work or study and you cannot find them on the street. So…. You can change what people should see about Romanians and get to know us better. You have this power. Please have a look at this material and you will understand how important is for all of us to change this image created all over the world : Head to Head at Oxford Union, Margot Parker from UKIP is ridiculous !

Well, coming back to my story in the aircraft….I started to tell my “neighbor” what should she expect to find in Romania (it was the first or second time to come but only for business meetings so she has no “contact with Romanian life”). After a few minutes she invited her colleague to have a sit next to us and listen to my stories and bag of “tips. In 3 hours telling only real things about Romania and its inhabitants I felt that I was able to commute a campus from North to South without changing its position, I felt I was able to change their perception with 180 degrees. And that makes me feel so happy and if you wonder why makes me so happy, well…is just because I am proud to be Romanian and I would like everybody to understand the reasons.

romania love

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Posted by on December 21, 2014 in Articles in English


The importance of non formal education in a formal world – Monica Rosu

Published in  “Holistic Marketing Management Journal”, Volume 4, Issue 2, Year 2014



The need for non formal education is becoming intense and more appreciated due to the fact that the formal educational system adapts too slowly in the socio – economic and cultural changes of our world. Non-formal education complements the formal education and only together lead to the reduction of unemployment, to the increase of self-confidence, to a world we can enjoy every day. Non formal education among students brings “motivation” which is not taught in universities, brings the experience of trainers in various fields they worked, acting as a button printed with big capitals letter saying: “Start Now” . In this respect we worked with Romanian – American University in a pilot project, and the results was spectacular . This paper aims to present the importance of non formal education among students / graduates.


Training, non-formal education, personal branding, career, professional, students

JEL Classification:

J23, J24


Non-formal education is a phrase mentioned for the first time in an international discourse about education in the late ’60s and early ’70s. In Romania was first time mentioned by UNICEF in 1997.
Non formal education can be described as an organized educational activity outside the existing formal system in order to meet the educational needs of a particular group / public that seeks clear learning objectives . While formal education uses an obligatory curriculum, non formal education curriculum is negotiated by group of students/ teachers/trainers to meet the targeted groups’ needs . Trainers may be aware about the problems faced by the group from statistical studies as well and create a program that meet the needs for the group guided by those materials. This way the information that students can not achieve at the university can be acquired attending training programs such as seminars , workshops, in order to increase the chances of success in life both personally and professionally. In Romania approaches related to non-formal education (personal branding, professional development, lifelong learning) appear blurred among young people, so their way of thinking has become different than their teachers, parents, employers etc. Non formal education has the capacity to create intergenerational ties and encourage each individual to communicate efficiently, changing him into an active and responsible participant in his group’s social life.


Several studies have formed the basis for needs identification manifested by both students and employers about the level of employability.

• Study No. 1:
According to the study conducted by DOCIS , there are perception differences (in many cases substantial) in regards to importance given by the employers and candidates in the recruitment process to certain skills and competencies. (Fig. 1)




• Study No. 2:
According to studies conducted by Catalyst Solutions, the graduates average wage expectations do not coincide with the average salaries offered to graduates by employers (Source: BBC – online edition)

• Study No. 3:
According to the Youth Strategic Plan presented by Ministry of Youth and Sport for the period 2014-2014, a number of 71614 individuals, younger than 25 years old were registered on welfare in 2012, representing 14% of the unemployed registered person in Romania. In the next age category 25-30 are registered 40793 unemployed people, representing 8% of total unemployed people in Romania. As stated on the plan, one of the system’s weaknesses is the indifference showed over the positive effect the non formal extracurricular activities proves to have on personality development of the youth.


• to enhance students knowledge on subjects related to employment process in order to establish a balance of student’s and recruiter’s perception regarding various skills and competencies
• to clarify the issues related to salary expectations, that students/graduates are not aware of especially if they participate to the their first job interview.
• to accelerate the application process and rate of success based on skills acquired by students through non-formal education and contribute for a better insertion in the labor market facilitating the transition between education, and labor market.
• to increase the awareness among universities, teachers and students about non formal education and its importance for both students and universities.

I. Strategy:
To accomplish our task we decided to approach the students from 2 non formal educational perspectives: Personal Branding and Recruiting and Selection. The reason to choose this approach is that before the students decide what career suits them better they have to know who they really are, what are their values, how is their personal brand perceived, what would they like to do and what are they good at and later on, they will be prepared to answer the question: “What career should I choose?” If the students/graduates/candidates doesn’t know who they really are, how are they going to convince a recruiter to hire them? Through the subjects we decided to discuss with students, they will be surprised to find out so many interesting things about themselves. They will complete different personality tests, value tests, vocational tests. They can recognize the results but in the same time, more new information about themselves pop-up and engage their interest in finding more and build the competitive advantage they never thought of. As soon as they have a definition of themselves, they will be trained to become successful in the recruitment and selection process. They cannot get the best suited job if their personal brand is not well polished. The personal brand covers a lot of areas you have to work on but can be defined as an emotional response to the image or name of a particular person and each of us success depends on it.
So what does a student have to do before applying for a job? Brand himself. That means that he has to create the right kind of emotional response he expected people to have when they hear his name, see him online, or meet him in real life. And this response he is waiting for, will better be good.
II. Establish the curricula:
• based on the results of these studies, we created a seminar and two workshops that were aimed mainly to improve the employability degree among candidates;
• the materials were designed to balance the perceptions, showing the students what a recruiter understand/analyze from each action / gesture / etc manifested by candidate. Inviting participants in the ” recruiter’s backstage ” we aimed to create a reality zoom of what should they expect as soon as they graduate the university and as well to make them aware that are responsible in terms of how they choose and manage their career and life.

We decided to create a group of 4 events to be held in February-March 2014.
• One seminar will be held in 2 different days so the students have a second opportunity to participate. The presentation was build in an attractive way, and will be held in a friendly, familiar atmosphere, with participants interaction. The seminar contains general information, statistics, issues, solutions and new methods used by “Human Resources” and methods used by successful candidates, to identify the proper, best suited job/candidate.
• First workshop’s objective was to support students in finding more about themselves in order to find the best career path. (Test, role play, examples, discussions)
• Second workshop’s objective was to support students in attending a job interview in a professional manner. (Case study and interview simulation based on the “learn by doing” method)
• Total hours of training = 10 hours
III. Assure the trainers are prepared to offer higher standards of information.
Trainers educational background and work experience comes to cover in the most professional ways the established curricula. Their educational background:
Trainer 1:
a) Bachelor degree – Marketing & Management
b) Master degree – Marketing
c) Certified trainer
Training subjects: Marketing, Personal Branding, Human Resources
Trainer 2:
a) Bachelor degree – Psychology
b) Master degree – Organizational and Human Resources Management
c) Certified trainer
Training subjects: Human Resource Management, Personal Branding
IV. Set the details with Romanian – American University
(date, time, duration, and all the presentation assets needed)
Expected outcomes:

• Students will be able to find a career path that suits them, useful to them and to society, to fulfill them professionally and personally. The result is desired by both: students/graduates and employers, and – not least by universities that prepare students for the present and future labor market.

• It was really rewarding to get the feedback and find out that participants were satisfied with the quality of the information, with the way it was transmitted, the degree of interactivity, and so on, which makes us believe that the assessment of needs that we developed at the beginning of this project was right and the information addressed to students were the ones they expected most. Analyzing the feedback from participants we realized that the collection of information we shared was very welcomed by students. The rate of employment was a reward of their participation will and our work. In first 2 weeks after the session of seminars and workshops, 10% of the participating students contacted us to announce that they went to interviews and are now employed based mostly on the information they received on seminars and workshops.

• We often describe the type of business we run using terms like B2B or B2C.(formal terms with no emotional impact) Whichever you choose, the business works because of people. Products, services provided by your company may not be sold if they are not accompanied by the emotion conveyed by the staff. This is why we are happy to present an approach agreed by those who deal in general with non formal education, and this is called H2H. (Bryan Kramer, 2014). Human 2 Human is a new concept showing the importance of people in any activities and mostly in the tertiary sector, today when the social network become our ID and non formal education has a strong effect on our way to progress next to formal education. What will we do with all the theory and practice if we are not aware of who we are and how we are, if we do not know what we like to do and what we can really do. How can an individual without a developed personal brand and professional identity be a part of your business? This is where our main desire comes from. It refers to train individuals to become better person with strong and better professional skills using different methods than universities does, using interactive classes, freedom of thoughts, empathy, etc. Heaving well trained people we will get a better turnover and a better place to live.
• We would like to underline, that there is a real need for such seminars and workshops. Non formal education is supporting students differently than what they get through formal education in the university and students appreciate this approach. It comes to complete them as people and professionals as well.




• Bryan Kramer, There is No B2B or B2C: It’s Human to Human: #H2H [Kindle Edition with Audio/Video], 2014

• Erik Deckers, Kyle Lacy – Branding Yourself – second edition, 2013, p6-8
• Octavia Costea (coord.), Matei Cerkez, Ligia Sarivan – Educatia nonformala si informala: realitati şi perspective in scoala romaneasca / Bucuresti: Editura Didactica şi Pedagogica, 2009 ISBN 978-973-30-2605-1, p9

• Ministry of Youth and Sport –Strategia in domeniul tineretului 2014-2020- draft, p4-17



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