Never blame customize your leaders….a HR message

In a small group discussion, someone has asked why most people in corporate focus largely on own survival, benefits and self-gratifications than being ambassadors of change and attempts to change the system?

Even the owners of some small companies also engage in self praising, self proving and having sycophants around them than being visionaries and leaders of change. Paradoxically most of those people despite knowing the management essentials exhibits only narrow minded and selfish leadership style. Why they demonstrate paradoxical or self contradicting leadership style in corporate?

Instead of blaming or complaining people, we have to look at the situation truly from the perspective of evolution and adaptation of different species of plants and animals. If we read and learn more about nature and biology, such questions itself we can avoid and can accommodate all such differences and contradictions gracefully.

Look at the diverse species of flora and fauna in nature. Some of them become choosy and niche specific, some of them become ubiquitous and while some have adapted uniquely.

Based on the above description, we can classify these species under 4 categories viz.,

  1. The species that have not chosen any specific habitat – example mosquito
  2. The predatory species like lion that live as pride to suite to open country while tiger live a solitary life for ambush hunting.       Cheetah, contrary to most predators, hunt during hot day to avoid other predators snatching away its hunt and the leopard has developed capability to drag its prey double its body weight to tree top.
  3. Strong adaptation shown by some plants to live either in aquatic habitat – example lotus or in dessert like cactus.
  4. Symbiotic species, engaged in mutual give and take or win-win relationship example pollinators and flowering plants.

If we elaborate the above further, we can understand clearly the role of evolution and the prevailing leadership qualities shown by people in corporate.

Certain species like mosquito have not appeared to have cared much about their habitat and have focused only on their survival. Some people in corporate do display such leadership. They will not bother much about the corporate culture, HR policies etc., and will focus mostly on their own survival and success.

The second group of people either forms team or like to work in isolation depending upon their end goal they are looking for like pride of lion in an open country or like a solitary tiger for ambush hunting.  Some people also look for appropriate time to do certain things. Such people like to showcase their work usually when others are busy with their work so that their work would look unique and will also receive complete attention. They are like Cheetah.

While the third group of people would show strong adaptation like either an aquatic or a dessert plant. They would amaze many in corporate by proving that none can perform ‘certain specialized job’ like them. It is like only certain plants can survive in aquatic habitat and dessert. By developing such strong adaptability (specialist style), they find their success in corporate.

The fourth group of people develops symbiotic relationship by giving and receiving between them. But these symbiotic species too show strong adaptation and hence without such association, they cannot survive.

If we reflect the nature and species diversity, we can understand that most (may be all) of the species of animals and plants primarily focus on own survival and success than anything. This is how most people in corporate functions.

Why no one attempt to change the corporate culture is because all of them have own reasons and goals to fulfill. If own survival and success of people are linked directly with the growth of the corporate many might contribute to the growth of the organization.

Leadership style is evolution linked trait to suite a given habitat. The habitat may be same, but the role can be different and hence different species do behave differently. Besides role, the inter species interaction also determine the leadership style.

It is better to customize the leadership style of people to your corporate rather than expect them to display what you wish and assume as the best leadership style/trait.

Blaming or complaining about people will never answer your problems.

Dr S Ranganathan, ClinRise Derma Pvt., Ltd., Chennai

Desire, Dream and Destination – Social Entrepreneur Forum

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Success to remain lazy…a HR message

Can we ever say the success of man in this biome is nothing but the mere outcome of his intelligence? Man has discovered many things, invented machines and drugs to improve the quality of his life, its comfort and longevity etc. Should we recognize all the above outcomes as products of intelligence of the man than anything else?

If we seriously introspect mans’ success in totality, we can understand a startling revelation that it is not just intelligence to achieve, the instinct of man to do everything possible to enhance his ‘laziness’ only achieved him all the successes he has on date. But the question is how happy and peaceful he is in spite of having all success/achievements that he has today?

Because of his tryst to be lazy, he has made several achievements and accomplishments but still he could not become happy and comfortable at the being level. Because, more he innovates and discovers things to live comfortably and be as lazy as he can, he becomes more busy and noisy at feeling and being level.

His endless pursuit to be lazy makes him permanently and continuously busy. He is also compelled by the above situation to pay huge price to remain lazy and comfortable. To generate price to offer to his lazy and comfortable status, he become busy again, busier he becomes, he become lazier and due to such addiction and its consequence keeps revolving around his life.

In animal world such jigsaw does not seem to exist. Animals never go lazy at the ‘mind level’. The phrase ‘lazy’ used in this article is only in the context of ‘people uninterested in doing anything due to complacency’. Taking rest has to be well differentiated from laziness. Animals like lion, tiger, leopard etc., do rest for short or long hours. They rest at physical level for longer hours mainly because they don’t get their food easily. Further, they also live under several threats. Conserving energy until they find their next meal, and conserving strength to deal their enemies even in the absence of food justifies them to rest for long hours.

But man wants to rest at ‘mind’ level. Only for the above, man goes on investing and discovering several things. To shorten and to make it easier the communication system, mobile phones are invented. But today, the same devise is causing several confusions instead of any worthwhile facilitation of his communication. People have become busy with the device even when they cross the road and invite accidents.

The point is different. Do not measure your success based on how effectively you could enhance your laziness because such success will not reward you happiness. Therefore never go for such success. Success without happiness is gruesome, tumultuous and torturous. Despite having achieved success or after having made an achievement, still one can remain utterly miserable. Because, instead they could remain lazy, their laziness makes them busy.

The corporate leaders must understand the following important aspects viz.,

  1. Do not endeavour success to remain lazy
  2. Never allow your laziness to make you busy as that will not have any direction or dimension
  3. Ensure success with happiness as complete form and discount either of the two (success or happiness) if comes to you in ‘single’ and never go after such mission

Dr S Ranganathan, ClinRise Derma Pvt., Ltd., Chennai

Desire, Dream and Destination – Social Entrepreneur Forum

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Know the meaning of fear, necessity, care and caution…a HR message

Fear or necessity makes people to exhibit the signs of innovation, creativity, bizarre traits etc? Which element of the above emotion makes one really an achiever?

Fear and necessity always co-exist as they are two sides of a same coin. The lion hunts huge buffalo not because of ‘just necessity’ i.e., they need to eat. Lion does hunt huge buffaloes only because it does not fear hunting buffaloes. When lions have decided to hut a huge buffalo, they employs different strategies and necessary care and caution. The necessary care and caution should not be defined as ‘fear’ as ‘fear’ and ‘care and caution’ are totally different.

Fear is something born much before a mission whereas care and caution exists throughout the mission, i.e., from beginning to an end. Many would give importance to necessity and then decide either to fight or flee. The achievements during such occasion are accidental in nature and not intentional or well designed.

But see other side of the coin – the fear. Understand how negatively you are influenced by the emotion – fear at the beginning of the mission? Also understand carefully whether it is fear or necessary care and caution you should exert in completing the mission. Fear will impede your journey while the necessity will limit your journey.

Never think necessity will ever make you an achiever. Necessity can at most, makes you busy, compromise/agree and accept the outcomes. In this premises, if you could achieve something, that is it. Such achievements are accidental in nature. Do not go after such achievements. Your success will be grandeur if you come out of your necessity and fear, convert them into necessary care and caution.

People in corporate often express their fear as caution and care. Fear is something that generally appears in the beginning of a mission. Also the fear would impede the mission and its progress.

When targeting such gigantic buffalo, the lion are cautious and careful but not fearful. If they were fearful they would not have dared such fete. It is also not just the necessity that has compelled the lion to go after such big prey. They could do so only because they could overcome the fear by being careful, cautious and strategic.

Bring your success not out of necessity but by overcoming fear and instead of being fearful, be cautious and careful. Many people in corporate gets trapped inside some unfound fear and would love to perish with meager gains than big achievements. They are otherwise very capable, knowledgeable and talented.   Unknowingly they get stuck between ‘fear and necessity’ and gets lost over there permanently.   The message is that do not be ‘in between’, ‘be outside’ of your ‘fear and necessity’, and be an achiever.

 

Dr S Ranganathan, ClinRise Derma Pvt., Ltd., Chennai

Desire, Dream and Destination – Social Entrepreneur Forum  

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Objective-time-effort…learn from bats, dear corporate

Bats are essentially the nocturnal flying mammals distributed throughout the world. It means, during day, they reside/roost in caves, trees in some lone areas or in some isolated and abandoned old buildings/bungalow etc. The above details are well known to all of us. If we carefully search/study the nocturnal behaviour of bats, we can learn a fantastic management message that the bats are although nocturnal animals, but do choose right time within the night for foraging. They are not busy through out night.

Unless the objective/task and the timing of ones effort are well understood, no amount of efforts would bring success or result. Blaming the effort or fate will never help one to get the objectives achieved.

The Noctule, a species of bat that prevalent in Europe is one such wonderful example. This bat is known to hunt small birds and birds only constitute greater proportion of their feed.

Most of the birds are diurnal i.e., active during the day. So finding and hunting birds during night hours is not possible for Noctule bats. It appears, the Noctule bats have learned the art and science very well. They start searching for prey just before sunset and never wait for the day to retire and night to begin. Towards sunset, birds would generally move towards their roosting site to hide and protect them during night.

The smart Noctule appeared to have learned the art that catching birds before sunset will be far easier than searching them in dead night. Hence they wake up early (during sunset) than extending or prolonging their sleep a little more.

Knowing the timing to invest ones effort is therefore essential to achieve success. Imagine, the whole of night Noctule bats can forage. If they had ever followed the above philosophy, they might go foolish. In true sense, the bats are nocturnal and hence the whole of night they can search their food.

But for Notule, birds are their primary prey. Hence even if the whole of night they search the prey also, they may not get a single bird to hunt as most birds are diurnal. Hence, instead being late to wake up by stretching the sleep longer, the Noctule bats wisely get up early during sunset and become successful.

The message to be learned by people in corporate is that be early than be late. You may have plenty of time to complete the task but still never take advantage of time. Understand the objectives and link it up with right time, only then your effort will grant you success. Every one has to calibrate the ‘objective-time- effort’ to achieve success.

How wisely the Noctule bats have understood the above management principle of ‘objective-time- effort’ and that is how it finds great success as bird hunter bat.

It is not just with effort or having a meaningful objective one can find success, but only by knowing it well and linking it up with right time will make our effort result centric.

Dr S Ranganathan, ClinRise Derma Pvt., Ltd., Chennai

Desire, Dream and Destination – Social Entrepreneur Forum

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HR instincts

All animals, including man involuntarily show the tendency to escape or an extra alert or caution when they hear a sudden sound or sense any small changes in the environment. This is instinct and such response or reaction is greatly involuntary.   Both the deer and lion or in other word, all predatory animals and prey animals exhibit the above instinct more or less in uniform manner.

The instinct of biology or life is mainly based on four tenets/instincts viz.,

  1. First, avoid or move away or exhibit quick reflex at body level
  2. Then be alert
  3. Engage in flight
  4. If not possible, fight

Even in deep jungle and in own well guarded territory, if a pride of lion or herd of elephants see other animals including man or hear any unusual sound, they first tends to exhibit a small shock at body level, then become alert and only then decide what has to be done such as to escape or fight. The biological form of life has never evolved to fight and perish. The cardinal principle of life in strict biological sense is made to co-exist and flourish.

Once the above law of creation and its instinct are understood, much of commotion, the people can easily avoid in corporate world. HR function must recognize the four major instincts of all biological forms.

When there is a problem, the people in corporate in general tends to move away from it. Once they have done so, they instead of being alert to understand the problem, they either resort to flight mode or fight mode.   At any cost, first and foremost, they want to escape from the scene. Even if the problem has nothing to do with them, but still they do not wants to be in the scene.

Instead being alert to understand the problem in order to evolve a meaningful solution, they relay too much on their first, third and fourth instincts. The second instinct more often they neglect or never use. The reason for the failure of most our decisions are not due to the fact that we are not wise and wise enough to take wise decisions, but the problems are not well understood. Without any understanding of the problem, we are taking our decisions either to escape or fight.

The first instinct of ‘avoid’ is set in the biological system, only to understand the issue. Only when we move away from an issue/problem, it can be understood. But most of us miss the second link and jump straight to third or fourth factor viz., from avoid to flight or fight by not being alert to understand the issue.

The message is that one has to be alert and must invest time and patience to understand every issue instead of moving away from it or resist it with tooth and nail. Only then path for success can be created. Even for dealing competition also corporate people requires the above approach.

Learn the management bliss of creation of biology and life so that many issues in corporate can be dealt easily than getting caught like flea in spider net.

Dr S Ranganathan, ClinRise Derma Pvt., Ltd., Chennai

Desire, Dream and Destination – Social Entrepreneur Forum

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Learn your HR message from Skunk

Doing two things at a time or trying to achieve the same objective by two different methods simultaneously is unwise and the same will not reward or profit us is well known to nature. And only with such understanding or management essential, the nature has created the mammal Skunk.

Skunk is one of the most pungent and obnoxious scent producing animals. It uses its scent for defense purpose. The presence of the skunk can be smelt even from a mile. Many large predators like lion, leopard etc., avoid skunk and run away from the scene due to the obnoxious scent of the animal.

Although most predators avoid skunk from attacking, sometime the hunger due to non availability of prey will compel some predators to attack skunk.   During such encounters, skunk usually sprays its bad smelling scent at the predator. If that doesn’t work, then it tends to bite the predator. The most striking point is that the skunk will never throw its scent and bite at the same time. It will first use its scent and if that doesn’t work, only then it would attack the predator.

If the skunk ever tries to throw the scent and bite the predator at the same time, neither of the above, the animal can do properly. Hence it resorts to any one of the options first and later only it employs the other one.

In corporate, most people love to incubate and hatch multiple eggs in different nests thinking that they can profit big. But at the end, they gain nothing. Working with multiple options is equal to one who does not have any options.   The multiple options only would cause confusion and state of no action. The point is not about having multiple options. But while doing a particular job with particular objective in mind, one should not engage in doing another parallel job to meet the same objective. Only when one lacks confidence or has doubts, other option is taken up to meet the same objective at the same time.

Another complex situation also can be seen in some companies. The company owners make their people responsible for multiple tasks which are parallel to each other. They love to engage all people to do all jobs and that would cause only confusion. They assume that when many people are made responsible for all jobs, mistakes will be less. But multiple responsibilities would only cause confusion, they are yet to understand.   At the end of the day, despite having large number of people in the team, not the productivity or profit, only confusion, errors, blame and fights become the byproduct of such mission.

Sufficient space for focus, people need, to do things perfectly. Once the objective is set and methodology is worked out, doubt or curiosity on shorter/alternate methodologies to achieve the above objective should not be entertained as they might not only derail the achievement, but also cause confusion at the end.

Let our management understanding come from the ingenuity of skunk as they never employ both the defense options such as throwing the scent and biting the enemy simultaneously.

Dr S Ranganathan, ClinRise Derma Pvt., Ltd., Chennai

Desire, Dream and Destination – Social Entrepreneur Forum

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To become what you wish…a HR message

You are the product of what you do, want and wish to be and nothing else. In other word, what you think and what you do only determines your identity and personality. What you are is largely controlled and shaped by what you have been continuously doing.  Only what you do determines what you are and what you do is governed by what and how you think.

When one falls into trap of doing the same thing repeatedly and over and over again, then the thinking and doing becomes mechanical, automatic, rhythmic and involuntary. The thinking and doing become tantamount to each other and also they compliment and support the existence of each other and also own existence. Therefore one has to question own thinking and doing style courageously and must change if desires to become something different.

Nature has left an important example for the corporate people to learn. Look at the animal – anteater. Anteater is 6 feet long, huge and heavy animal but its mouth is only an inch wide. It eats ants, termites and other small insects as its exclusive food. To eat such tiny insects, it does not need big mouth or powerful jaw and hence the nature has created it as big as 6 feet long but with a very small mouth.

Knowingly or unknowingly our thinking and actions are supported by the nature to become a product of what we do and how we think and not what we want or wish to become. To become what we want, we must understand and question what we do & how do we think and must do the necessary corrections if required. But most people seldom do such introspection and assume that what they are doing is the right & correct and hence will continue to do what they have been doing.   But ironically they often complain & yell about their world, people around them and ask why things don’t change etc. But they never bother to audit or introspects their actions, its consequences and their contributions to the state of present affairs.

The key dimension of quality leaders demands such introspection. Please check what you do whether it match with what you want. If you keep doing things just to meet the present demand/need, you will be always ends up meeting only what you need at present and not will be doing anything towards what you really want to become in future. If you really want to change the future course of action, you need to change your style of doing things right now.

Look at the beauty of nature. When the 6 feet long animal settle with ants and termites as its food, nature has made its mouth just to suite to its need. Evolution will do based on what one is doing and how thinking and hence one must clearly understand what one need and therefore what one should do, instead what one is doing.

Dr S Ranganathan

ClinRise Derma Pvt., Ltd., Chennai

Desire, Dream and Destination – Social Entrepreneur Forum

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