Fari Ebrahimi and Verizon

Verizon already has had large success in the telecommunications industry. With the merger in 2000, they have become a powerhouse. But they ran into a problem when they decided to accelerate their timeline to having the project of the merger completed in less than two years. Fari Ebrahimi, at the time senior vice president and CIO of Verizon Services Operations (VSO), had a tough challenge on his hands convincing them to do accelerate the time frame though. Ebrahimi knew that he had to persuade the company that he would provide them with the best technology and personell available to him. Using his position, Ebrahimi convinced the board to do exactly what he wanted. But how?

Ebrahimi used his ethos efficiently here. As CIO of Verizon Services Operations, which takes care of all of the services needed by Verizon, he used his position to convince the company that he knew what he was talking about when he said that the merger could be completed within two years. He knew all of the best technology to use and knew who the best people were to get the job done. But Ebrahimi didn’t just use his pathos to accomplish his goal. His pathos was also able to persuade the company into shortening the timeline. Ebrahimi used the customers’ ability to access the services when desired as an example. He appeals to their emotional side, the one that actually does want to see the customer happy.

Both of these characteristics seemed to work well with Ebrahimi’s personality. He seems to be a person that is extremely professional in their dealings with others, as he shows when he is trying to convince Verizon to accelerate their timeline, a dangerous move considering the potential customer dissatisfaction if they didn’t meet the deadline. From the article on the Oracle, Ebrahimi does seem to be a pleasant person who isn’t extravagant, but rather a simplistic person.

Ebrahimi’s simplicity and business-like style makes him more credible. Everything from his position in the company to the way he acted in accomplishing his goal makes him a credible source of information. Luckily for Verizon, the move caused the company to have a major profit from the savings that the merger brought about. By 2009, VSO had saved Verizon more than $1.6 billion across every area of the merger. A rather large profit from a risky move. Ebrahimi got his wish though and Verizon has thrived because of his persuasion.


Indra Nooyi


Merrill Mosimann


Blog Post #2


Indra Nooyi


            It is a great challenge to strategically operate one of the largest food and beverage businesses in the world. That is the task assigned to Indra Nooyi, Chairperson and CEO of PepsiCo. Since becoming president and CFO of PepsiCo in 2001, she has been the main leader and director of the company’s global strategy, giving her the responsibility of making the right executive decisions to promote the success of the business for many years past and hopefully many years to come. She has been the primary administrator of PepsiCo’s restructuring and its various large scale business procedures, including the 1997 disinvestment of PepsiCo’s restaurants into Tricon restaurants, the acquisition of Tropicana in 1998, and the merger with Quaker Oats Company, which brought Gatorade along board with PepsiCo. All of these proceedings have been important towards the prosperity of the business and they are much in part thanks to Nooyi.


            The decisions to sell PepsiCo’s fast food restaurants and to acquire Tropicana and merge with Quaker Oats were pivotal ones, and Nooyi had to convince her colleagues and associates that these were the right moves to make. Major transactions like these are often tough to promote to others and it can be difficult to persuade people to agree with ideas such as these. Nooyi saw less of a future in fast food than in beverages and packaged foods, so she advocated and formulated the dropping of KFC, Taco Bell, and Pizza Hut in 1997 and the subsequent acquiring of Tropicana in 1998 and merging with Quaker Oats (which included Gatorade) in 2001. These actions proved to be worthwhile, as PepsiCo’s revenue greatly increased after these business affairs occurred. Nooyi’s idea to move towards a more wholesome product approach paid off. She is able to connect with people and she has been described as a deeply caring person. This means that she has a very strong ability to appeal to pathos in people to get them to agree with her. Nooyi also shows her ethos, or credibility, with all of the business experience that she has. Her conscientious personality along with her business credentials allow her to be a very effective persuader.






Jim Keady and Team Sweat

Jim Keady is the founder and head of the non-profit organization Team Sweat. Team Sweat is an organization that is focused on ending the Nike exploitation of sweat shops in southeast Asia. Jim started the organization after a long dispute with Nike as an assistant soccer coach at St. John’s University in which Nike signed a contract with St. John’s to provide Nike-produced athletic uniforms. The uniforms included coaches apparel, and everything had the iconic Nike swoosh on it. Jim refused and ultimately resigned his post in protest, and committed his life to ending injustice in sweat shops. He focused on Nike because it is the biggest brand.Image

Keady and Team Sweat have been moderately successful in ending the social injustice Nike is involved with. Many factory workers have seen their wages and living conditions increase, but unfortunately not all of the exploitation has been stopped. Keady utilizes several elements of ethos and pathos that benefit his persuasiveness when talking with Nike and college and high school students. Keady also goes to schools as a representative for Team Sweat to spread the word of Nike’s exploitations.

First and foremost, during his presentations Keady shows a video telling a story of how he went over to Indonesia and experience how people employed by the Nike factory lived. Through his story, Keady is able to capture the attention of the audience and control their emotions. Keady also made his audience feel powerful. I remember him telling me that each person could make a difference, meaning I could make a difference. Most importantly, Keady kept it simple. He was able to explain the seriousness of the situation and not get too emotional when talking. Audiences understand what he’s talking about and don’t get the impression he’s trying too hard to impress them. As more and more people get involved and buy into Team Sweat’s message by buying less Nike products, the more pressure it puts on Nike to give workers fair wages and decent working conditions which is ultimately Keady’s goal.

For most people, Keady is a credible person because he associates with the Catholic Church. Getting a graduate degree in theology, it is clear Keady is a devout person who cares about morals.  When taking into account the fact that Keady was involved with a high-level collegiate soccer team at St. John’s, it also boosts his credibility. Theology and athletics means he has two fields of expertise and can speak knowledgeably about both subjects. It means that Keady is not an outsider who doesn’t understand the logistics of collegiate athletic departments. Keady knows what he is talking about and that makes it extremely tough to discredit what he says, which is why he has been successful in convincing Nike to provide workers with better benefits and improve working conditions for them as well.

Facebook buys Instagram


Founded in 2004 by Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook has revolutionized the social networking experience. Based off the principles of photo sharing and marketing, Facebook has always been on the move to improve their network through the acquisition of opposing companies. One such company is the photo sharing app Instagram.

Mark Zuckerberg displayed his ethos in many different ways when dealing with the intake of the Instagram app. During 2011 Zuckerberg approached the creator of Instagram Kevin Systrom with the intentions of acquiring the merely one year old app. When negotiations fell through with the board on Facebooks side, Zuckerberg took matters into his own hands. Using his credibility as the founder of the largest social networking site, in early 2012 he bypassed the board of directors and used himself for negotiations. By discussing the matters of the offer face to face Zuckerberg was able to make his one billion dollar offer seem like a reasonable price for the app appraised at two billion. Another way Mark was able to use his ethos was after the deal was nearly finalized. When he approached the board with the second proposal they were told they were buying it not consulted, (Davies). This shows Zuckerberg’s authority over his employees as CEO. The board members feel persuaded because they are told it is the correct thing to do by their superior. Although many good ethos traits were shown during the buyout some pathos was also used.

During the negotiation process two of the key pieces of the puzzle were hidden in pathos. Mark told COO Sheryl Sandberg that one benefit of the deal was that Instagram would still be run by itself, management wise, from Facebook. This shows pathos because emotionally it would be hard to sell a company you have worked so hard to establish, but this way it allows Instagram employees to benefit from the income and keep their positions within the company. Another use of pathos was the decision by Mark to not cut the opposition, namely Twitter, from using the service. By doing this he showed the Instagram owners he was in their best interest because he would not limit the user base to just Facebook members.

Facebook made one of the largest online buyouts in history with the help from Mark Zuckerberg. His ability to negotiate using ethos and pathos showed his determination to expand his company to further benefit his customers. Without the use of his rhetorical skills Facebook would not be where it is today.

Works Cited

Davies, Chris. “SlashGear.” SlashGear Instagram Wanted 2bn in Zuckerbergs Secret Facebook Negotiations Comments. N.p., 18 Apr. 2012. Web. 24 Sept. 2013.
Rusli, Evelyn M. “Facebook Buys Instagram for $1 Billion.” The New York Times. N.p., 9 Apr. 2012. Web. 23 Sept. 2013.

Steve Jobs and iTunes

Steve Jobs was known to be very persuasive.  He has persuaded people to buy Apple products and consistently wows the world with new products.  When Steve Jobs began to plan the iTunes music store, he faced the difficult task of persuading record labels and recording artists to put their music on iTunes.  He was motivated by his passion for music which led him to want to create iTunes.  He sought to create something where it was easy to legally purchase and download music.

Previously, labels released music on their own and piracy was very common.  Many labels sued fans who were illegally downloading music and placed many restrictions on downloading as a result.  Downloading music legally became very difficult.  Jobs was determined to create iTunes which would make downloading music easier and get the labels on board.  He knew that he had to create something that was easy to use but at the same time seem appealing to the record labels.

Steve Jobs used ethos and pathos when persuading the labels.  Jobs used ethos as he was a trustworthy person and was also reliable.  Jobs himself and Apple are credible and both have a good reputation.  He also had a sense of fairness as he wanted the labels, artists, and fans to all be satisfied and did not play to one side or the other completely.  Jobs remained very stubborn about the price of the music to be sold as he wanted it to be affordable to consumers but have the artists and labels make a profit at the same time.  Steve Jobs also used pathos when persuading the labels and artists.  He personally demonstrated iTunes to Bono of U2 and Jimmy Iovine, who is the chairman of Interscope Records, and both were wowed by it and supported it after seeing it demonstrated.  By having the two of them enjoy it and like it, he got them on his side.  He demonstrated it to get people to like it and want it.  Jobs belief in fairness led him to keep the prices affordable which made iTunes more appealing.

Jobs use of ethos and pathos were a big part what got iTunes created.  Jobs had a clear idea for what he wanted and his plan was reasonable.  He handled things personally like meeting with the heads of the labels.  Jobs was driven and intelligent and this helped him to be more persuasive as he wouldn’t give up and wouldn’t see his plans changed without his say.  He was fair in the process and managed to convince the labels to trust him that this was the right idea.  He was a credible source and many people trusted him.  He made the labels see that they were getting a good deal and that iTunes would work.  These things led to the labels and artists agreeing to put music on iTunes and people using it because it was easy and efficient.  Now, over 10 years later, iTunes has millions of songs and it is the best place to find new music.

Works Cited

Knopper, Steve. “Steve Jobs’ Music Vision.” Rollingstone.com. N.p., 07 Oct. 2011. Web. 23 Sept. 2013.

Sisario, Ben. “He Pushed a Reluctant Industry Toward Digital Music.” Media Decoder He Pushed a Reluctant Industry Toward Digital Music Comments. N.p., 05 Oct. 2011. Web. 24 Sept. 2013.

Twitter’s 500 Million dollar Turndown

Could you ever imagine that an offer of 500 million dollars to buy out your start-up website would be sitting right in front of you and they only thing needed to finalize the deal was you signature? That is exactly what Biz Stone, the co-founder and creative director of Twitter, was faced with deciding how the future of Twitter would turn out. Twitter at the time of the offer was operating at a loss for many years. Stone had to persuade his board members that it wasn’t time to abandon ship just yet.

Stone saw the value and great potential for future profits that Twitter could make, but all he needed was a little time to develop a plan to make his dream a successful story. Stone said, “We’ve created something that people are finding value in, but we haven’t yet created a business out of this and we really want to do that.” His next step was to convince his board not to sell. Why did he do this while his company was staring down a large buyout offer? He used ethos, pathos and logos like any good persuader would do.

Biz Stone knew that Twitter would grow into something huge that people would use multiple times a day. Stone used ethos very effectively by showing data from cellphone companies and building credibility in meetings saying, “We want to go on growing globally and make Twitter widely available on SMS, (short messaging service) there are five billion phones in the world that can handle SMS.” Making Twitter on a mobile platform would revolutionize his company in gaining followers and income. He just had to make his board see the future potential and not letting the limitations of technology at the time keep the company held back. Stone built this website and couldn’t just walk away from it, he had to make the board love the company just as much as he does using pathos. When asked if Stone has an exit strategy his response was, “Exit is a weird word, we are not taking that path. Our path is following our passion.” He finally got through to the board.

Twitter now is worth 15 billion dollars. They adjusted their strategy to making profits in greater numbers than ever before and corporate sponsors are lining up at the door to pay Twitter to advertise their name on their social media.

Work Cited

Bennett, Shea. “Why Twitter Turned Down A $500m Buyout Offer From Facebook (And Why Twitter SMS Is Here To Stay).”– AllTwitter. N.p., 02 Jan. 2011. Web. 23 Sept. 2013.

Garside, Juliette. “How Much Twitter Is Really Worth.” Business Insider. N.p., 13 Sept. 2013. Web. 23 Sept. 2013.

Reilly, Brett. “Twitter Turned Down $500 Million Buyout Offer From Facebook in 2008.” Social Media SEO. N.p., 04 Jan. 2011. Web 23 Sept. 2013.

Werbach Changing Wal-Mart

Adam Werbach was given the chance to change the face of a powerhouse company, but had to ruin his reputation to do so. Wal-Mart and Werbach were brought together after the VP of sustainability at Wal-Mart read Werbach’s controversial speech about how environmentalists are attacking sustainability all wrong. Werbach lost many of his collegues, friends, and even his job after the speech but in doing so he built a new one. The VP of sustainability saw Werbach’s speech and new that he was the person they needed to adjust Wal-Mart’s strategy. Werbach was the perfect man for the job because of all his knowledge about sustainability. He always knew what to do when it came to the environment. When he was 7 years old he created a checking account to become a “rainbow warrior” for Greenpeace. He continued his passion into high school and college where he created the Sierra Student Coalition, the first student run environmental organization in the nation. Werbach has his motives set and knows what needs to be done to not just talk about sustainability, but also how to act upon it. He’s quoted saying, “I helped create the largest desert park in the country, Death Valley, and I’ll proudly take my daughter there. Meanwhile global warming is going to turn the entire country into a desert”. What he means by this is yes he created a natural wonder, but it did nothing to stop the downhill slide of the environment. Lastly, Werbach makes a selfless decision in taking on Wal-Mart’s travesty they call sustainability. Adam Werbach shows all the qualities of pathos and ethos by showing his experience and also showing he has virtue, practical wisdom, and selflessness to save Wal-Marts sustainability.

Adam Werbach thought his career had hit rock bottom when he received a call from Wal-Mart looking for advice on how to be a sustainable company. Wal-Mart has a aura about them that does not scream environmentally sustainable company. Wal-Marts target audience isn’t the environmentalists, they’re the people looking for the lowest prices. Werbach had to figure out a way to convince their customers that sustainability matters. Werbach decided they had to start within the company, their 1.3 million employees. He created the Personal Sustainability Project (PSP) which asks each participant to find something unsustainable in their life, and figure out a way to fix it. Werbach uses the tactic of making small simple changes in your life that will, as he calls it nanopractices, rather than forcing people to make major life changing decisions. This method is different from Wal-Mart’s usual practices because it is 100% voluntary and form free. This just means that it’s on the employee to make the right decision. This small PSP has lead Wal-Mart to start thinking about how to make their company produce zero waste. Werbach’s influence on Wal-mart all started with his persona of being a virtuous man that has practical wisdom and is selfless. Once Wal-Mart contacted him he had already done all his persuading. Werbach had so much experience when he came to sustainability that once he was inside the company he could make the changes necessary. Werbach was able to make a large impact on sustainability by working within one of the largest companies in the US. He was never going to make that large of an impact from creating pettily organizations. He had the self-control to ignore his colleagues and go forth with his passion of making a more sustainable planet. In conclusion, Werbach demonstrated rhetoric qualities in order to gain Wal-Marts trust to make major changes within their company.


AT&T Carries the iPhone

Apple. For a long time this word only triggered the thought of a fruit that grows on trees. Now, Apple is known as one of the largest multinational corporations in the world all thanks to the one and only, Steve Jobs. Apple came out with their first personal computer in 1976 and continued expanding the types for more than two decades. Steve Jobs, one of the original founders of Apple, was ousted from the company in 1985 and soon after they faced rocky sales and a low market share. Jobs was soon brought back into Apple when they bought NeXT and within a year he became the company CEO. Apple then introduced the Ipod in 2001 and iTunes in 2004, establishing themselves as a leader in electronic production and media sales. In 2007, Apple took a huge leap and Jobs revealed the world’s first mobile device boasting “visual voicemail”, an Internet communicator, safari and ios. The iPhone. Steve Jobs was able to convince Apple to make the product, but in order to close the deal he had to persuade a carrier, AT&T, to sell his phone.

Steve Jobs is known as one of the most convincing, intellectual and successful businessman in the world. In order to convince AT&T to carry the iPhone, Jobs had to pull out his gift of persuasion. Steve Jobs was different than other CEO’s when it came to his convincing strategies. He came off as extremely credible through his personal involvement with the iPhone, his ability to build strong relationships with each carrier and his willingness to be daring and make extravagant demands. Jobs was the one who initially started the company so the concept of showing off his experience through ethos was no problem. He had mastered his own craft and in expanding his company to what it was then he displayed a great sense of practical wisdom, intelligence, and the ability to be a true leader. He became deeply involved and passionate about his products and would persist to get his way when making a deal. This emotional involvement in his products displayed his sense of pathos because it proved to the consumer or carrier he had a true desire to share his valuable invention with the world. AT&T, reasonably, had many doubts when making an agreement since it was Apple’s first time producing a phone, not to mention the iPhone was very expensive and over the top. Jobs was so desperate to prove he would keep his word that the phone would be successful that he even claimed he would write AT&T a check for $1 billion dollars and if the deal didn’t work out they could keep all of it. Just by being willing to do so and seeming confident in himself and the company, AT&T was convinced and agreed to sign a contract to carry Apple phones.

Works Cited:

Cohan, Peter S. “How Steve Jobs Convinced AT&T to Share Revenue.” – Worcester Telegram & Gazette. N.p., 26 Aug. 2013. Web. 23 Sept. 2013.

Henry Ford Doubles Wages

Ford Motor Company was established in 1903 by Henry Ford. As the company grew and became more successful, Ford gained much credibility, as he was known for innovation, transforming cars into commodities for the masses and his company into an American icon (The Greatest Business Decisions of All Time). With this credibility came the willingness from others to trust in Ford’s decisions, and ultimately led to Ford making one of the most iconic decisions the business industry had ever faced.

Eleven years after Ford Motor Company was founded, Henry Ford made one of the greatest business decisions of all time that would later impact both the company and the business world. Ford decided to double his employees’ pay which allowed them the ability to purchase the products they were producing. This very decision aided in creating the wealthiest nation in the world (The Greatest Business Decisions of All Time). This decision was proposed due to a mass number of employees quitting the company because the work load became increasingly hard.

As Ford made this proposal, his ethos and loyalty to the company helped put this decision into action. Ford was the founder of Ford Motor Company which allowed his ethos to be more noteworthy since he was a major authority figure in the company. When Ford realized that his employees were leaving the company, he wanted to improve the company by making changes that would ultimately benefit the workers. Ford was looking out for the workers’ best interest and planned to double their pay, as well as lessen their overall work load (The Greatest Business Decisions of All Time). This aided in Ford’s decorum. Keeping the workers’ interests in mind displayed to employees that Ford was trustworthy because he was willing to make his employees his top priority. Ford then met his workers’ expectations, and therefore made him appear to be agreeable with what they wanted. Although it may have seemed as if Ford was merely looking out for his employees, he could have been using the reluctant conclusion tactic all along. Ford most likely knew that if an increasing amount of employees were leaving the company, then sooner or later his Ford Motor Company would be going out of business. With this in mind, he seduced workers into thinking that he solely cared about the employees’ well being, and got his proposal set into action. However, Ford’s overall character pulled workers in and created a less stressful environment, and as a result, made for a more successful company. The market for the Model T expanded, annual labor turnover fell, and productivity was on the rise (The Greatest Business Decisions of All Time).

Along with his ethos, Ford also displayed much pathos, as he was able to sympathize with his employees. Ford realized that his employees were not happy with the working conditions they were being faced with. He was then able to sympathize with them and create a work environment that put less pressure on the employees and allowed them more free time as the workday had decreased from nine hours to eight. A tactic used by Ford which increased his pathos was the advantageous concept. Ford made his proposal based on what would ultimately benefit the employees instead of him. He gave the employees what they wanted so they would be willing to stay with the company.

Ford made one of the biggest business decisions the world had ever faced, and he was able to put it into action due to his ethos and pathos. He not only was an authority figure, but he showed that he could sympathize with his employees and make a proposal that would benefit them in the end.

Works Cited

“The Greatest Business Decisions of All Time.” CNNMoney. Cable News Network, n.d. Web. 23 Sept. 2013.

Vineet Nayar

Current Vice Chairman of HCL Technologies, Vineet Nayar, explains in an article how he  convinced his team of 55,000 employees to go from a undifferentiated service provider, to a long term partner. He explains that he didn’t cause the change in the company, his employees and senior managers did. Vineet only persuaded the company to head in a new direction. By being honest, open, creative, gathering information, asking questions, and dancing, he persuaded his company that this was what the company needed.

Vineet started off by gathering information. He went from office to office, stating facts about their current situation and asking opinions from employees. Some had no real opinion on the matter, some were willing to wait and see what happened, and others believed like Vineet that the company should have made this move a long time ago.

Point A was what Vineet used to describe where the company was at the time, he wanted to aim towards point B. It was when he spoke with HCL’s customers that he discovered what the company needed to do. Customers didn’t talk much about the services provided, the products, or technology. The biggest topic customers seemed concerned about, were the company’s employees. Vineet made sure that this was a big part of the company’s new goal, and strived for a new kind of management culture, Employees First, Customers Second (EFCS).

HCL blossomed into a better company after Vineet’s research and new ideas persuaded his people to work for something more. His idea was to flip the hierarchy of the company on its head and let even the people at the top, interact with and help employees face to face. This new culture lead to the company’s increase in revenue from about $0.7 billion in 2005, to about 2 billion in 2010.

Vineet Nayar used rhetoric to persuade his company to head in a new direction. Because Vineet was president of Delhi-based IT services provider HCL Technologies, he already had some credibility. He gained credibility by talking to his employees and customers. Talking to people and asking their opinions made him seem trustworthy and showed his selflessness and likability. Vineet showed he cared about everyone’s opinions and shaped his company to better need people’s needs. Besides using ethos to persuade people, Vineet also used pathos.

Vineet used pathos by showing people he cared and patriotism to persuade action.  He told stories to change people’s moods, and asked about their desires towards the future of the company. Vineet used patriotism by comparing their companies growing revenues, with their competitors. This made employees strive for a change, possibly even out of anger towards other companies. Vineet used his rhetoric to his advantage in changing the company.

Works Cited

Nayar, Vineet. “About Me.” Vineet Nayar. N.p., n.d. Web. 23 Sept. 2013

Nayar, Vineet. “June 2010.” How I Did It: A Maverick CEO Explains How He Persuaded His Team to Leap into the Future. Harvard Business School Publishing, n.d. Web. 23 Sept. 2013.