Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Survival of the fittest!

From the time Darwin proposed his theory of evolution the most favorite phrase of Managers is "Survival of the fittest"-the law of jungle is now the implicit law which drives career paths of business leaders.
While the Jungle law gives a perpective of ruthlessness one should have to succeed, it fails to recognize the more subtle but important element of evolution.
Single simple cells were the life which was originally formed...how did these simple cells become complex, integrated living things. If you review it you will know it is because they decided to co-operate. At the cost of some cells becoming redundant colloboration was established allowing life to evolve. When fish developed lungs that can breathe in land, legs that can walk etc-the cells agreed to give up something and take up something more by partnering with some other specialist cells which can perform the jobs demanded. To ignore this part of evolution is to champion destruction as colloboration and co-operation has been the core to evolution-not competition.
If we apply this to business situation-we have operating units, business units, countries,divisions, group etc. If all of them compete to show their existence is the most important and rest are incidental then you can be sure the extinction is near. Sure to be agile, adapative etc are key to survival but the most key to connect knowledge and drive the organization's collective wisdom is colloboration and not competition. It is not about who has the kingdoms and how they are bigger or better than others but it is about how kingdoms are run collectively. A lot of frustration of young achievers is due to the fact their achievements are narrowly focussed sub-optimizing something else(inventory reduction at cost of service for example). If we need to truly realize sustainable growth we need to embrace colloboration and not Survival of the fittest as what is true in green jungles is not necessarily true in the concrete jungles as we have lost a lot of intuitive instincts with our forced sixth sense.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Getting Lucky!

There are a lot who believe that luck has a crucial part in one's success. There are reasons to believe indeed it is. After a lot of hard work if the results are not achieved or we don't get what we desired then what else can be at fault than luck. The aspect of luck is said to fostered by some of the older religions/cultures in the forms of astrology, numerology, pleasing demi-gods etc. The huge following in China for Feng-shui (the Indian equivalent of Vastu) is a good example of how one can increase chances of being lucky.
I recently watched the movie called "Kungfu Panda" as it is the kids movies that interest me even after spending 40 years in this earth.
The movie has a core message given by the Great Master (who is a Turtle-the slowest creature is the master of Kungfu which is the fastest reflexive sport) "There are no accidents". Basically the message is "To believe in Fate/Luck is a good short term escape but everything has a purpose is the core philosophy". Why is it different from normal approach to believing in luck or not being lucky...the approach is to take life as it unfolds. Don't judge at every stage and be happy or unhappy. Let success not go into your heads and failures into your hearts. Very simple and effective way to avoid stresses of success and failures. Nirvana is a state when you reach an ego position where nothing bothers you-the position you are, the position your friend or enemy is in or what you should possess or not possess etc...nothing bothers you. It is easier said than done. But the more one starts to consciously move away from seeking material possessions or get away from thinking that in every meeting I will talk something and it should be heard and appreciated etc the more closer he/she gets to Nirvana.
The self ego drives our beliefs and actions..blaming luck is one form of defense which this ego has designed to protect that is nothing is wrong with self. A more effective form of defense is no defense. Don't carry negative thoughts as they stink like a dead fish. This is in the way of positive thinking. But don't carry too much positive thoughts of self as these are as poisonous as the negative thoughts as they create a artificial sense of superiority. Just take the day as it comes. Look at positive aspects of everyone and it is surely luck that you have them around as the experience you are getting is unique and cannot be experienced by someone else. But don't take an approach to blame luck when it is a failure as perceived by you or others as you are also equally lucky to experience this failure to share your learning with some one who has not. Therefore success in life is driven by 75% attitude, 24% hardwork and 1% reflection. Luck is in your attitude but it is completely under your control, so you cannot blame it.

About Me

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Gothenburg, Sweden
Still finding introspecting to find who am I? Waiting for a Guru!