Understand the ‘intelligence’ of ‘intelligent’ people….a HR message

Intelligence can have two separate dimensions. Hence before concluding someone as intelligent, please understand the dimensions clearly is the message, nature conveys to the corporate world through its creation of Green heron, woodpecker finch and cuckoo.

Once the dimensions of intelligence of people in corporate are understood, assigning the right task become easy and so is achieving success.

Look at the green heron. It is an aquatic bird, found largely in marshy areas and near water bodies. The interesting aspect of this bird is its short legs. Since green heron has short legs, it can catch fishes only in the shallow regions. Fishes does not come to the shallow regions often.

The bird green heron is known to gather earthworms and other small insects or crustaceans and place them in water to attract fishes. When the fishes come near the bait, the green heron catches the fish. Its inherent limitation i.e., short legs, the green heron has learned to overcome by using baits to attract the fishes in the shallow region. It means, it attract the fishes to come to shallow regions.

The second example is wood pecker finch. It lives in dry land where cactus grows predominantly. During dry season, the bird is known to collect thorns from cactus plant and or small twigs, to dig out worms from tree holes. The woodpecker finch uses its beak only to break open the surface skin of trees. Since its beak is small, it cannot collect the worms from the tree holes. To overcome its limitation, the finch has learned the science of using the thorn of cactus to catch worms.

In the case of cuckoo, it knows that crow and many other birds cannot differentiate the eggs of cuckoo from its own. Hence it would wait for the crow and other birds to build their nest. Then the cuckoo would lay its eggs in the nest of other birds and make the crow and other birds to incubate and rear the young cuckoo without their knowledge.

In corporate, people with all the above three types of intelligence can be seen.

The example of green heron and woodpecker finch denotes how one should use the intelligence to overcome the inborn limitations or to enhance ones capability.

If leaders display the intelligence of green heron or woodpecker finch, such leaders will have high level of task orientation and such leaders also would devise different methods to overcome the limitations. Limitations never limit them from achieving nor would make them to sit and grieve or complain.

The people with cuckoo intelligence although might achieve results, but make such achievements only because of the inherent innocence of others. If people around them become alert and smart, that would limit their success as the leaders with cuckoo intelligence only know how to outsmart others and never know how to perform.

Nature conveys a strong management message through the above three birds.   When you declare someone as intelligent, do not define people based on the result they produce but also understand how they overcome limitations, how creative they are in dealing different situations. Only such people can build the organization.

Dr S Ranganathan

ClinRise Derma Pvt., Ltd., Chennai

Desire, Dream and Destination – Social Entrepreneur Forum


Own importance and importance from others…a HR message

Why the human life is filled with so much of sorrow, excitement, suffering, jealous, treachery etc., and seemingly these conflicting emotions are less likely to be present in animal world, in equal proportion to that of human world.

One of the fundamental reasons for the above is that man always tends to evolve within whereas, animals are evolving in response to the changes in the world outside of them.  In simple sense, man tries to change the world for him because he think of he is special, important, the most intelligent and the strongest.

If we look at the simple example of why animals seldom seems to use mirror to see own face or visit any spiritual Guru for counseling or motivation or do prayers to get any divine blessings? Because animals in general, seems to give importance to their ‘life’ with reference to the ‘present’ and are not bothered about the time yet to be born (future). They are not worried much about tomorrow.

Some people are very complex and complicating in nature. Either they think of themselves as very silly or as extraordinarily great and uniquely capable. Sometime they would voluntarily go to people to showcase their utmost humility and simplicity while some other time would expect the world around them to come to them and shower flowers at their altar.

It means, they want people around should motivate and energize them and simultaneously the people around them also must tell them that they are also getting motivated by them.

Imagine, if such person were your boss? Such people are always worried, complaining in nature, expecting something from others but God alone know what they expect, always dissatisfied, God alone know what would satisfy them etc.

The simple reason for the above is people giving ‘too much of self importance’. There are two kinds of people we can find viz.,

  1. People who give too much of self importance
  2. People who expect too much of self importance from others

Employees in general fall into the first category and the employers in general would fall under the second category.

Managing either of the above or both kinds of people are not that difficult. But some people fall between the above two. Such people not only would expect other to speak high about them, others also must tell them that they are very simple and down to earth etc. It means, they expect others recognition both to their emotion and to their intelligence (working style).

Many owners of small organization do fall in such category. Although they are the owners but have very primitive leadership qualities. Such owners not only destroy own happiness but also would affect the happiness of people who are working in their organization.

Such people must simply reflect certain facts in nature. Many beautiful animals like bird of paradise, macaw, peacock, lion, tiger, deer etc., are extraordinarily beautiful. But none of them are very serious about their beauty. All of them tune themselves to the external world. They do not seems to think too much about them or what others think of them or what others ought to think about them etc.

All animals seem to lead a simple life. Believe fully in innate beauty and bliss. They neither known to complicate their life by giving too much of self importance or would expect other animals to show the same gesture to them. They neither seem to fall between the two.

Dr S Ranganathan

ClinRise Derma Pvt., Ltd., Chennai

Desire, Dream and Destination – Social Entrepreneur Forum


Let the task give strenght and force to people…HR insight from physics

According to physics, only when the force acts upon an object and that causes its displacement, the work is done.   The perfect example is a restaurant waiter carrying a tray full of dishes, to the guest. Since the waiter carrying the tray, it certainly creates force but that does not cause displacement of him and hence it is not the perfect example for work done.

Similarly if one pushes a wall very hard and gets exhausted, it amounts to no work done because the force has not caused displacement of the wall/object.

The simple definition of ‘work’ according to physics, the corporate leaders must know. While setting KRA’s and assigning various tasks to people, they should remember that it is not engaging people with some task and make them busy, the accomplishment of task and its definite usefulness to the growth of the organization should be the primary focus.

It means, the task should act like force and that must cause displacement. In management perspective, the task should make people responsible and committed (offer force and strength) and the resultant force and strength should make people to accomplish the task.

But unfortunately the owners of most organizations want to see their people always busy, doing something or other.   Unfortunately none of those busy people may be contributing to the organization and more often they will be doing some menial and routine jobs. Interestingly the owners and bosses would feel proud about such people and even declare them to be the most contributing lot, in the organization.

It is not the ignorance of people to be blamed and only the ignorance of the team head/owners of the organization are directly responsible for the above confusion.

The task should exert ‘force’, it must have direction and utility value for the organization, not in just meeting the routine but also in shaping and setting the future of the organization, as well.

Physics clearly explains that if we keep a load on donkey, certainly the load exert downward force on the animal. When the animal moves forward, it is not the load that causes its displacement only the whiplash of the master makes the donkey to move.

Unlike the above situation, the task (load) assigned to the people should make people to accomplish the task and not their survival instinct or fear of action by the organization. Only when the scientific understanding is applied in managing the organization and fair culture and value systems are created in the organization, people become contributors due to their commitment, passion and responsibilities.

Most of the organization while setting KRA’s and assign task, they would like to putt heavy load on donkey and whip it from behind. The heavy load can only impede its speed and can never offer any force or strength to move.

The task assigned by the organization should provide force and strength to people and not overburden them.

Make your people always successful and with such successful people, carve the success of your organization.

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

Desire, Dream and Destination – Social Entrepreneur Forum


HR messsage from Wrasse fish

If you are useful, even your most dangerous enemies also would spare you. Similarly, if you learn to make use of ‘you being useful to others’, you can be successful. Reason for the grief of most people in corporate is only due to their inability to find any use out of ‘them being useful to others’.   Hence they always sink into the bottomless pit of sorrow for being useful to others and not being useful to self. Sometime their agony can be due to they are simply ‘used’ by others.

Look at the example of Wrasse fishes that live near coral reef. Wrasse fishes play an important role in keeping many other fishes healthy. The Wrasse fishes would remove and eat the dead scales from other fishes and also would peck insects from the fin and tail of other fishes.

Because of the specialist job of removing the dead scales and parasites from other fishes and freeing/alleviating them from the problem of insect infestation, even the predatory fishes seldom attack Wrasse fishes and instead they would seek their service/help.   Interestingly the Wrasse fishes also find their meal without any problem.  

The Wrasse fishes are extremely useful to many fishes and at the same time they also know how to make use of them by being useful to others and become successful.

Most people in corporate often complain that others always use them and never reward them. Most of them are of the view that if they help others, others should reciprocate. Instead of expecting for such gesture from others for the help you had offered, see how you can extrapolate your ‘use/help’ for own success.

The Wrasse fishes are not just useful to others but are also finding use from being useful to others. If such an approach is not followed by people in corporate, only grief becomes the end product.

In corporate, every employee has to be useful to the growth of the organization. Only the usefulness makes ones existence safe and secured in corporate. When one is useful to others, also might know how to make use of such ‘usefulness’ for own success. The Wrasse fishes have learned the above management fundamental. They are indeed successful in own way and are also helpful to other fishes including their likely predators.

Instead of blaming others or engage in self pity or constant complaining, one can follow the finest management approach of the Wrasse fishes. Do not get stuck in how useful you are to others, but remember how you should find ‘use’ of being useful to others.   That is the real blue print of success. Then you will never find any impediment or obstacles in your way and nor do you will have any complain or grief about people or your fate or destiny.

Look at the marvel of nature. Every species of fauna and flora conveys a strong management message to corporate. It can be understood only when people show willingness and openness to learn from nature.

Be a Wrasse fish and be successful by being useful to others and self. One should find help from help and not reciprocation to help.

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

Desire, Dream and Destination – Social Entrepreneur Forum    


Be a snail or hermit crab…choice is yours…a HR message

Naturally the expectations of people in most corporate would be quite high during appraisal time. One group of people (employees) would claim that they have contributed greatly to the growth of the organization and while other group of people (the seniors, bosses, owners) would philosophize to people not to have high expectations as expectation is the root cause of sorrow, suffering and disappointment etc.

In this see-saw game, who is right and who is wrong? Nature has three examples for the corporate to reflect.


  1. Learning from snail:       Employees must reflect the biology of snail so that they can wisely manage their expectation while hammering their contributions. Look at the growth of snail. The snail and many members of Molluscans follow a finest management principle.       First and foremost, the outer shell of the snail and other molluscans would grow and enlarge through a process of annular calcification. Only after the extended growth of the hard shell is attained, the growth of the soft snail occurs. Snails know that only the hard shell or conch offers protection to the soft snail and other molluscans. Hence the shell has to grow first and only after the snail can grow. The employees must remember this fundamental.       They have to work first for the growth of the organization and only then, the own growth is possible.
  1. Learning from hermit crab: Hermit crabs always use the shell of other molluscans to hide and live. They often carry the shell with them.       When they grow, they search for another bigger shell. If they fail to find a bigger shell, they will have to remain in the same size.   In any case, they cannot grow in the same shell as the size of the shell it uses will not grow. The same way, if people think they have grown and if the same organization cannot provide further growth prospects to them and if they still aspires to grow, they will have to move to another organization like hermit crab how it searches another shell when it wants to grow.
  1. Learn to learn people: This for employers. The employers, bosses and leaders those who philosophize the gospels of Buddha that desire/expectation is the root cause of all suffering/ disappointment etc., to people during appraisal time must show the same level of temperament while assigning task to people and people fail to deliver. People might pay the same coin back to them at times.   People would quickly learn to learn you, boss.

The message is that appraisal should not be limited to an occasion of either expressing ones expectations or philosophizing or denying such expectations. The organization must set clear vision, growth plan and accordingly the people have to be included and involved in the task.

Unfortunately such delighting and exciting way, the process of appraisal would not happen in most organization. It is purely because of poor HR culture and leadership imbalance. Interestingly both the primordial HR culture and leadership imbalance would hand in hand in organizations that at family centric or owner centric.

For the growth of any organization, it is not about owning every responsibility, empowering people is inevitable.   Therefore the owners should leave the task to professionals than becoming philosophers.  Invisibly the people become philosophers in their performance too.

Dr S Ranganathan

ClinRise Derma Pvt., Ltd., Chennai

Desire, Dream and Destination – Social Entrepreneur Forum


The risk of safe…a HR message

Too much of safety measures you like to employ in your responsibilities can certainly cause too much of risk to others is the management message, both the wood duck and Barnacle geese conveys to corporate.

Both these birds build their nest in holes in tall trees or on the slope of high mountains which are inaccessible to most of the predatory animals. They lay eggs in such nests and fully feathered chicks would hatch out from eggs. Unlike most of the nestling chicks that are reared by the parents in the nest until they grow fully, the nestlings of Barnacle geese and Wood duck has to leave the nest and follow the parents soon after they hatch out.

The parent birds invite and encourage the chicks from the nest to jump several feet down within minutes after they hatch out. The height from which the chicks have to jump down is not only scary but also dangerous/fatal. The chicks that fail to jump down or that makes mistake while jumping has to pay their life as price as several predatory animals would be waiting for such chicks. Many chicks do die when they jump down.

The parent barnacle geese and wood duck have done their best by building the nest in most inaccessible site where the predators cannot reach and eat the eggs.   Certainly they have ensured the safety of the eggs and the process of hatching.   But the same safety measures do not give flexibility or advantage to the parents to rear the chicks in the nest. Hence the chicks have to take the risk of jumping down from great height.

The management message to be learned by the corporate are

  1. Over caution and extra safe measures although may offer some level of ‘safety’ but may not give you the freedom or flexibility
  2. Your safety measures should not be limited to your task alone but it must offer overall safety to every one in the spectrum

If the above tenets are not understood, your extraordinary safety measures will have limited values.

From the point of view of laying eggs and safely hatching the chicks, certainly both wood duck and barnacle geese have done their job well by choosing an extremely inaccessible nesting site. But the same safe nest site neither offer any advantage to rear the chicks in the nest nor the chicks to move out of the nest safely soon after they hatch out.

Many corporate leaders look for only own safety and welfare. Most of them always serve own self interest, selfish needs and self gratification. All their effort will be to ensure own safety and they may not ever care to know about how they jeopardize the interest and welfare of the organization.

They ruthlessly push people to risk without knowing the fact that when own people are put in danger means it would only affect the organization. Unfortunately, some of such leaders may be owners of the organization but still they may act exactly like ‘middle management’ level leaders and not are ‘true’ entrepreneurs. It would be like how the parent barnacle geese and wood duck choosing safe nesting site and make unsafe landing situation to own chicks, the leaders of some organization also will function.

The debate is not about the act of barnacle geese and wood duck are right or wrong. But the corporate has to learn an important management message and that is, never gets lost in the ‘sacrosanct’ definition of safe approach. Your safe measures must provide safety and security especially to the most vulnerable in the team. Look at the irony. The chicks of barnacle geese and wood duck find it hard to accept the safe nesting site of its parents when they have to jump down.

Let the overall welfare and safety of everyone in your organization be your first priority and not just own safety and security.

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

Desire, Dream and Destination – Social Entrepreneur Forum


Animals are after solution…a HR message

Are you a seeker of problem or seeker of solution?

The ‘problem seeking people’ are the one who always looks for problems, blow them out of proportion, often exaggerate them and will finally tries to tell the people around, how they live in the midst of several problems and how smartly they manage/solve these problems etc.

On the other hand, the ‘solution seeking people’ in corporate always looks for solutions and tries to solve them quickly. This group of people never tries to exaggerate the problems or would attempts to create fury and noise out of such problems.

The problem seeking people always live in ‘I’ world, love to create a fan club for the self, expect and crave appreciation from others etc.

On the other hand, the solution seeking people would try to solve the problem quickly than precipitate them or allow the situation to go out of control. The interesting point is that the former group of people largely live for own self gratifications and to satisfy own ego. Whereas, the solution seeking people will have only one focus that is, the system should run smoothly without any disharmony.

To understand the above better, we need to find out why animals seldom live in utter confusion and dismay.

Most of the animals in general are solution seekers. In all possible account, they first try to avoid the problem and seek a safe solution. The interesting point is that most of the problems in the animal world are relating to their ‘physical’ existence whereas the problems of people in corporate are largely relating to the ‘psychological’ reasons.

The proportion of physical versus psychological reasons causing problems in animal world may be 9:1, whereas in corporate, the ratio will be 1:9 where 1 being the physical needs and 9 being the psychological needs of the people.

In animal world too, the psychological needs dominate over the physical needs especially during breeding season. On such occasions, the animals may even forbid their food search and engage in establishing their dominance and hierarchy through fierce battle. It is known that the male animals like lion, buffalo, hippo etc., not only get seriously injured during such fight on proving who is dominant, sometime they may even die.

Having the chance of producing own progenies can whether be defined as physical or psychological need is difficult to define. On broader scope, it is psychological need because such need is not essential for own physical existence/living.

The message is not to have any psychological need in life. But be aware of the fact and understand what extent such needs needlessly cause turbulence and turmoil in your life.

From such awareness, you can become a solution seeker.

During breeding season, the dominant male animals seek problem to seek solution whereas large number of people in corporate seek problems to cause more problems and are completely away from solution.

Let solution to every problem be your first preference and never mix your physical or psychological needs into it.   Be a solution seeker and let you work to find solution to all your problems.

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

Desire, Dream and Destination – Social Entrepreneur Forum