Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Post #3 - Interpersonal conflict scenario

Ah Lim, Ah Quah, and Alamak are 3 very close friends who knew each other since they were young. Being very close friends, they co-owned a Pokémon farm. (

Go! Pokémon!

Ever since the farm was built, they had worked hard together to bring the farm to what it was today.

Ah Quah is sort of the leader of the trio; he displays good leadership skills, is very good at what he is doing, but is a bit too direct with his words. Alamak on the other hand, although he is a hard worker, he tends to make minor mistakes from time to time. Ah Quah has the tendency to criticize Alamak for every mistake he makes, but Alamak regards the criticism as ‘positive feedback’. Ah Lim is sort of the character created for mediating purposes.

One day, it was business as usual at the farm. A representative from a company that supplies Pokémilk had paid the farm a visit. He was supposed to collect a cheque worth 500000 PokéCash, directed to his company. Such matters are usually handled by Ah Quah, but Ah Quah was out on a delivery. Alamak took the initiative to write the cheque on Ah Quah’s behalf.
During the evening, the Pokémilk Company called Ah Quah and notified him about some mistakes on the cheque. The cheque had the wrong account number, wrong amount, and wrong name written on it. The company expressed anger over the matter as they had to make another trip to the farm. Feeling annoyed, Ah Quah took it out on Alamak.

“What did you think you were doing? Only babies make stupid mistakes like this...”

For some reason, the usually passive Alamak snapped. He began to hurl several unspeakable words towards Ah Quah. Ah Quah was shocked and left speechless.
Two weeks has passed, and the tension between the two has yet to subside. Ah Lim, being witness to these events, recently found out that Alamak was on a bad mood that day due to the death of his pet goldfish. What should Ah Lim do to salvage the situation?
 Knock it off! You two!

**Off topic
This is obviously a hypothetical scenario; it is totally fiction. Any resemblance of any real life scenarios is purely coincidental.

For those who are wondering what Ah Quah and Alamak means:

Alamak- An Malay expression of dismay, surprise or alarm.
Ah Quah- An offensive term for an effeminate man. The Singlish equivalent of “faggot”.

Thank you for reading this post!


  1. Hello Zhen Yong!

    Once again I must commend you on yet another humorous post! While I was reading it, I could not help but to laugh at various parts such as the reference to pokemon and the characters' names. It was very amusing!

    Back to the topic, I feel that the fictitious farm would not be what it is today if it wasn't for all 3 of their contributions. Each of them must have been doing their job well. In context, each group has to have a good leader and several hard workers.

    For this case, Ah Lim needs to mediate the situation as quickly as possible. He has to talk to Ah Quah and Alamak separately and sort out each others' conflict in order for the farm to function properly again.

    What I feel is that Alamak has been taking all the scolding inside. It started to pile up from the start even if he did not show it. However, when he could not contain it anymore, he let loose all that feeling inside of him which resulted in the outburst. I feel that the death of his goldfish was just a mere spark to finally let out his anger.

    A conflict should not interfere with the progress of the job/task and should be resolved as soon as possible. The group should sort it out and move on!

    In conclusion, this is another nice post you have, added with the tinge of humour. I'll definitely be awaiting your next post.


  2. Hi Zhen Yong,

    If I were Alamak, I will take this knowledge of the death of the pet goldfish as an opportunity for everyone to gather and clear things up. It could be difficult, thus, I will first talk with Alamak and Ah Quah individually and convince them that we all meet together.

    As the witness to everything, I will be their counselor and mediator for the meeting. I will not put down anyone, but I will try to reconcile them both. This can be done by gently letting them understand the situation and their own shortcomings from a neutral perspective (without taking sides). If all of us can learn from it, similar events can also be avoided in the future. After all, these people are close friends and are doing business together. Peace, unity and harmony should be recaptured once again for everything not to fall apart. I will try to direct Alamak and Ah Quah’s focus to the future: good friendship, good business.

    Hopefully, they will accept taking this path to reconciliation which, I believe, is the best for everyone.


  3. Hi Zhen Yong,

    The way you have presented your post is nice. If I were Ah Lim, I would definitely do something to unite them (Ah Quah and Alamak). After all Ah Quah and Alamak are good friends and conflicts usually occur in one’s life.

    Through the post we come to know that Alamak is a hardworking person and whenever his leaders Ah Quah criticizes him he takes it as a positive feedback and try to rectify the mistakes. He is a kind of person who is passionate about his work. Because his goldfish had died, he was unable to accept that and as a result of it he was unable to concentrate on his work and eventually made a mistake in the cheque. I personally feel that he shouldn’t have snapped his leader as his leader was not aware of what actually happened. By snapping his leader he has eventually fell into a conflict and has affected the relationship.

    Considering myself as Ah Lim, I will first talk to Ah Quah of what actually made Alamak to behave in such a manner and narrate the success they had brought and then talk to Alamak and would try to make them to resolve the conflict immediately as it is not good for them as well as the team and would make sure that such an instance never happens in future.

    Your post is fascinating and it is a pleasure to read your blog.


  4. Hi Zhen Yong,

    Hats off to your sense of humor! I really admire the way you write your posts. A fictitious story with a Pokémon farm, Pokémon milk and cash is hilarious!

    Back to the story, I feel Ah Lim should quickly take the initiative to resolve the differences between the two. The farm stands cause of the combined efforts of the two. Ah Quah, being the team leader, at the first place should not have scolded Alamak on petty matters. What I feel is that Alamak got used to the scolding and hence didn’t show his angry, though it had all piled up inside him. The death of his pet goldfish just acted as a stimulus and Alamak just blurted out everything that had piled up.

    If I were in Ah Lim’s shows I would look upon the death of the pet goldfish as an opportunity to get the two of them together and make them talk over the issue. I would ask Ah Quah to apologize to Alamak for shouting at him on trivial matters, while on the other hand I would Alamak to apologize to Ah Quah for blurting out his anger of him. I would also try to make them realize that the farm is successful because of their combined efforts and they shouldn’t throw it away.

    It was a pleasure reading your post!

    Saurabh Arora