Why you get fooled?…a HR message


Ones inability, inefficiency, lack of understanding, weakness/susceptibility, getting fooled easily by others may not be really linked with ones intelligence. As true as the above fact, so true is, all our enemies exist only because of some of our above defects.


Look at nature. All the herbivorous animals thrive well only because of abundant green plants. None of the green plants would actively fight against herbivorous animals eating them. But instead, they have developed enormous capability to re- grow and regenerate quickly. Imagine if the green plants either actively defend or fail to regenerate quickly, the life of herbivorous animals may not have been possible.


Similarly, only due to the ‘innate weakness’ of prey animals and predators could survive. No prey animal ever wants to be prey to predator but still they fall prey.   It means, some level of weakness/susceptibility is created in every species of prey animal as free donation/ gift of evolution.   Only due the above, predatory animals could survive.


The interesting point is that the weakness/susceptibility due to the evolutionary reasons cannot be understood or decoded. Perhaps the nature also may not want any life form to understand the ‘innate weakness/susceptibility’ built in them. If such secret can be decoded, the existence of nature itself may vanquish.


The management message to be remembered by the corporate people is that at times when you fail or succeed and which you could not logically explain why and how, better let that remain as mystery because you cannot demystify it. Do not blame destiny or god or fate, accept it with grace and develop newer skills and means to recover from such setbacks. Never blame anyone or search for the reasons when reasons are not obvious.


The message is not against demystifying the reasons, but never waste too much of time for the above if your initial efforts proves it impossible to demystify. Look at the arduous journey of many parasites to become human pathogen. Many parasites essentially require an intermediate host/vector. But still many parasites are quite successful. It is not just because of the smartness of these parasites proved them to be successful, but also the innate weakness/susceptibility of the victims have played a big role in the success of these parasites.


The message is that most of our failures or success need not be due to our merit and effort linked. If your boss is constantly looking for an opportunity to come after you, remember you are the real reason for it although such reasons you could or could not demystify.


Sometime knowing how and why may make you crazy and meaningless. When we fail to recognize such possibility, re-work towards how to solve the consequences alone will make our life meaningful and worth living.


The corporate people must stop thinking as ‘victims’ and instead start working towards how to overcome and be successful.


Dr S Ranganathan


Deathless capabilities…a HR message

Many people often complain, yell and grieve that by working for many years in the same corporate/organization, they have totally lost their capability, credence, creativity, intelligence, confidence etc. In brief, they sum up that they have wasted their entire life by doing so. Further they also regret that if they had ever moved out of the said organization long before, they would have become totally different than what they are today.


People often blame the previous organization or the past situations a lot for them loosing some of their abilities and talents or what they had failed to achieve. The question is whether such confessions ever carry any truth or merit? All of us know that such complains are common with most people.     The simple tenet and truth of life is that only the undying passion and killer instinct makes people to become an achiever.  


Nature has a best example to demonstrate to such complainants in the corporate world. The example of nature clearly reveals that it is not the situation or the corporate ecosystem that affects ones own creativity and intelligence but how one is willing to respond to the newer situation and brings the necessary changes within only matters.


Look at the beauty of the plant Selaginella. This plant completely looses its water by about 95% during summer and dries off totally. In true sense, the plant Selaginella dies off completely or is left with just 5% water.


Astonishingly, when the plant receives water again, immediately it absorbs the water and turns totally into green, once again. The entire process doesn’t take days to week but happens very fast and spontaneous.


The message is loud and clear. People, who grieve and complain about how they have lost all their talents and creativity in their previous organization and how they have become less effective, must know the ‘superb resurrection’ strategy of the plant Selagenella. The plant loses about 95% of water during acute summer. Selagenella never dies when it loses about 95% of its water and nor its instinct and capability to become lush green again with full of life, when favourable condition returns.


If people believe in their true talents and capabilities, however long the hibernation period be, once they find best and favourable opportunity, they re-invent their talents and will makes the difference. True talents, capabilities, creativity etc., never dies. They may not express vividly due to circumstances but will never disappear or become redundant.


The plant Salaginella is called as ‘resurrection’ plant only because it comes back to life again from a state of lifelessness. Learn to understand the significance and meaning of the diversity of life on earth and learn the loud and astound management message of nature.


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


Un-pollinated trees are dropped out…a HR message

It is not just the mutual benefit but mutual dependency, absolute necessity and inseparability between people and corporate also become inevitable for the success both the corporate and its people. One may wonder how one could survive and be successful if such an exclusive dependency is ever created? In such relationship, if one partner gives a miss due to some reason, the other one have to go insignificant and defunct. Why nature says such ‘necessary relationship between the two different species also means grand success.

Look at the fig trees. All fig trees are completely depends on small wasps called ‘fig wasps’ for pollination. Without their help, the fig flower that turn outside in cannot pollinate. Interestingly the fig wasps also cannot breed anywhere else other than inside a fig fruit.

The fig wasp enters the flower when it is open and burrow inside when the flower turn from outside in and close completely. Inside the closed flower, the pollinator fig also gets protection to breed and while doing so, it also pollinates and fertilizes the fig flower.

The management message is not just how both partners mutually benefit, how both partners depends upon each other and how exclusive and acute such dependency is.   During this process, many other insects do try their luck by entering the fig fruit/flower. But they may not help the plant to pollinate. Instead, thy may use such ‘secure’ place to breed and rear their young ones. It would not benefit the fig trees at all. But the fig trees not only recognizes such ‘cheaters’ but also smartly punishes them.   The un-pollinated fruits, the fig trees never hold them. Such fruits quickly detach from the tree and get dropped. Once the fruit is dropped off the tree, would die off and that will necessarily also kill the ‘cheater’ insects. Only when the cheaters are destroyed, the menace due to them in future also can be minimized if not totally prevented.

The tree if holds/retains the un-pollinated fruits, it would not only cause huge economic loss to the tree but also populate cheaters who can destroy the fig trees in future by not pollinating the fruits. Once the tree recognizes the cheater who had entered the fruit, it is wise to loose the fruit and that is why it drops the un-pollinated fruits quickly.

It is not just the mutual benefit, absolute dependency and necessity between the two also can bring success. This language and meaning, both the corporate and its people must learn.

Be smart in such relationship to recognize and eliminate the cheaters. The fig trees are extremely successful despite having exclusive dependency on fig wasp to pollinate.

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


This chemistry law is for corporate also…..

Very recently I was interacting with a group of chemistry graduates about various wonders of nature and what the corporate world has to learn from nature etc. Spontaneously a young chemistry graduate asked me whether any principle/equation of chemistry can directly be applied to human behaviour, leadership style etc., like that of biology or are they merely relevant only to chemical components.   Immediately I shot back my answer by citing the example of ‘Avogadro’s law’.   I told them to reflect the ‘real sense and meaning’ of Avogadro’s law and how relevant it is to the human beings as well. The law beyond defining the characteristics of different gases of same volume at same temperature and pressure also speaks about equal capabilities of different people in the corporate.


The Avogadro’s law states that “equal volumes of all gases at the same temperature and pressure, have the same number of molecules”. It means that different gases will have equal molecules if they remain at same volume and are subjected to the conditions of same/equal pressure and temperature.


Exactly like different gases how their molecules remain same if they are of same volume and kept under same temperature and pressure, the people holding same designation, qualification and responsibility, working in the same corporate are also capable of producing same/equal result. If someone is not performing as per the Avogadro’s law, then the corporate leaders have to ponder upon as why there is such difference/discrepancy.


In many corporate, people holding the designation of Manager or General Manager or Vice President in different functions perform differently. For example, the Vice President of R&D may show least capability and competency when compared to their counter parts in Legal or Finance Function of the same corporate. If such discrepancy is noticed or seen that the Avogadro’s law is failing, the corporate leadership must introspects it from two separate dimensions.


The first probability/possibility is that such non performing people holding such designation are truly not worthy for the job title. Without clarity and foresightedness only, the corporate would have engaged them with such authority and freedom.


The second probability/possibility is that the corporate may not be giving equal/same environment for different people to perform. Even if the volumes of different gases are same, but the pressure and or the temperature are different, different gases may not show same number of molecules.   Therefore, all critical conditions must be same for every employee only then the best performance can be expected from people. Only in such corporate, people of same designation and responsibility also perform equally, resulting in the success of the organization.    


But most organization love to blame only the people. They always cite and compare that one manager as the best performer over other and wonder why the other manager is not doing so. Provide same work atmosphere, support system and recognition to all as they all have equal capability. Certainly the people also would offer their best thus making the ‘Avogadro’s law’ is true and possible in corporate as well. It would also profit the corporate.


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





Brain and other organs… learn your best HR message

Brain death of someone dear and near to us often shatters our hope, and hopelessly people harp hopes to put the patient on life support system for sometime and finally the ultimate power of death prevails over hope and science.  This scientific/medical truth everyone knows. Beyond our knowledge and comprehension, nature has done its wonder in creating the brain of humans in an extraordinarily unique way.   It appears, nature had applied the finest management wisdom/brilliance than science while making the human brain and its functioning.


Brain is the commander-in-chief our body. The physiology, biochemistry, organ functioning etc., in our body are guided, guarded and governed by the brain.  Although the brain is the ‘ultimate centre’ of human body, it has been made only to play the role to ‘guide, guard and govern’ the body & all its functioning and not to control it.   It means, every organ in our body is given absolute authority, freedom, independence and finally the required level of competency and alertness. That is the reason why, even after death of the brain, many organs in our body function for sometime.


Nature has never made the brain in such a way that ‘I control you all and therefore if I die, you all also must die along with me immediately’.   Because of this distinctive and brilliant wisdom of nature in making the brain differently only, organ donation is possible and even from a single dead person, many gets a new life in the form of heart, liver, kidney, eyes etc transplant recipients.    But, when the brain is alive, all organs in the body definitely functions only as per the prescription of the brain, the ultimate boss.


The management message for the corporate is clear. The corporate bosses must learn the art of how to guide, guard and govern people without denying the authority, freedom and independence to people. Unfortunately, most bosses in all corporate think and acts differently. Guide, guard and govern always possible for them only in the premises giving limited freedom and operational authority to people. People should report back to the bosses about everything and should not have any decision making power and nor the people be wise to do so.


Imagine, if the bosses regularly suffocates people in corporate and give no freedom even to excise their capability, how such organization will reach great heights. The bosses often feel that if authority and autonomy are given to people, they seldom respect them back. The fear of loosing their identity, role and relevance only makes most corporate bosses to throw their weights often and ensure that people are always reared in the ecosystem of ‘psychological-slavery’.


Once the goal is set well for the people and given authority, why should people deviate from the path? Should they be respecting their goal the most and be goal centric or be respecting the bosses and be their sycophants? Nature had never made the brain to boss other organs. Similarly, let the corporate bosses understand their role as not to boss others. Bosses should facilitate people to be successful both for the organization and finally for themselves.


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


True leaders from bottle tree ….a HR message

Why perception and reality always differ? Why people often say ‘appearance is deceptive? The answer is very simple. The people in general are totally, truly and completely different in their thinking, behaviour etc., than from how and or what they looks like. Always a quick judgment/conclusion or an opinion is drawn about someone at short notice (first glance) when people see others. In most instances, people form such opinion about others even before they get to know anything about them or interact with them. Later when they start interacting with them, naturally they get to know them better. As a result of the above, they often have to reject their first formed opinion/judgment or conclusion about others. That is how they say the ‘reality always differs from perception’.


The conflicts due to ‘perception versus reality; or the concept of ‘appearance is deceptive’ is very common in corporate world.   If people learn to be like what kind of perception they evoke upon others (knowingly and or unknowingly), the scope for such conflicts can be easily avoided. How to develop such leadership style is a big challenge to most people in corporate.  


May be, only as an answer to the corporate world, nature has created the bottle trees or baobab trees of Madagascar.   The tree is said to live for 600 to 800 years. The tree is popularly referred as ‘bottle tree’ purely and due to its appearance or resemblance to a bottle.   Because of its vivid appearance similarity with bottle, the tree has earned the popular name ‘bottle tree’.


There is no doubt that the baobab trees exactly looks like a bottle. However the baobab tree qualifies beyond its appearance. The baobab not only looks like a bottle, it also stores water in its trunk like how a bottle can do. About 1000 litter of water, the tree used to store in its huge trunk. Because of the huge water reservoir within the tree, the tree remain bald (without any leaves) during drought and severe summer, nearly for 8 months of a year.


The message to be understood is that the bottle trees (baobab) not only look or appear like ‘bottle’ it also ‘functions’ (behave) like a bottle. The appearance of baobab tree and the meaning of the appearance in reality are one and the same.   That is why the tree could live for 600 years and could remain bald and leafless for 8 months of a year.


It looks like, only to send a strong management message to the corporate world, i.e., how to bridge the gap between ones appearance and what is real the tree is created by nature.


Understand your real personality and learn to reveal your true and real personality. Avoid faking or putting up an artificial image of yours which is farce and far away from true. Learn to achieve such leadership style, by learning from the nature’s marvel, the bottle trees of Madagascar.


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


Stone eating birds and bluebonnet plant…a HR message

Why most of the grain and seed eating birds also eat/swallow pebbles/small stones? Is this an accident or an intentional act? The possible answer is that the stones swallowed by the bird really acts like the grinding stones and grind the seeds and grains in the stomach/gut. This is how birds breakdown the hard seeds and grains. It means, birds swallowing stones is intentional and deliberate and also has a biological purpose.


The seeds of the state flower of Texas, the bluebonnet would looks exactly like stones. To resist the hard adverse environmental conditions, the seeds are said to have evolved like hard pebbles or stones. But the seeds although looks like pebbles, have no escape as birds thinking these seeds to be stones, swallow them. But interestingly the seeds don’t get digested in the stomach of the birds as they are too hard. During defecation, the seeds get dispersed in different places and become new plants.


This complex behaviour of birds eating pebbles, the seeds of bluebonnet appear like pebbles and the seeds of bluebonnet are still getting eaten by the birds and the seeds thus entered in the gut of the birds adapted to escape the gastric action of the stomach and finally gets dispersed through the excretory route of birds and become a new plant has a strong management message for the corporate leaders to learn.


First and foremost, know your competitor/predator or who can prey upon you. Change your tactics and leadership style to overcome the competition. If you find it hard to prevent predation (competition), learn to out win the competition/predation by going along with it still be smart to win.   The word competition is used only to relate the context of the content of the article to the modern corporate.  


The message is that by evolving/adapting the seeds to looks like stones/pebbles, the bluebonnet seeds still could not escape birds eating them. Birds eat pebbles to crush the grains and seeds. So the seeds evolved further to overcome the gut digestion of birds and that is how it has become successful.


If we evolve suppose to be a right strategy to deal with the competition today, it may work only for the moment and need not give permanent protection/support. A permanent citadel to overpower competition, no corporate can ever make. Realize that if the existing strategy is not working, complement the existing strategy by amending a new supplementary strategy or develop a new one. Evolving newer/innovative and improvised methods and techniques are extremely essential to be successful throughout.


Competition do grows continuously. Along with the growing competition, one has to be wise enough to grow several competencies to out through the competition. Look at the marvel of natures’ creation – the bluebonnet plant.  Understand the miracle of nature strictly from the management perspective. Every subtle aspect in nature, a deep management message is inscribed. Develop instinct and interest to read such management inscriptions of nature and be successful.  


Let your understanding about the seeds of bluebonnet plant of Texas be the just beginning.


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