When we talk about changes in management, we normally talk in context of business! But the point is that eventually business is a social entity, a subpart of a bigger canvass called society. If we look around, we will find that suddenly society seems to have got transformed. Gone are the days when it was all about suppressing your wants through a framework of judgmental righteousness! It is the era of desires getting unleashed, the dreams getting bigger and more hands chasing the same resources. It is about pace, crispiness and leanness. And it is this change that is getting evident in the business and as a result in the practices of management. Yes! Management has got transformed but when you look at the BIG picture you will find that it is more of a reflection of what is going on around us in general.
When we talk about management, the word itself has two important words contained in it: ‘Man’ & ‘Men’. Quite aptly, if we talk about the contemporary and future scenario, a great challenge for the organizations would be to manage the ever-changing work-atmosphere and work ethic. The era of palmtops and e-CRM is very aptly playing a precursor to a world where organizations would be amorphous. There would be concepts like ‘work-from-home’ or ‘on nodes’ (we in India have already started doing business with people who we barely know or have hardly ever seen). In such an environment, the whole concept of HR will get metamorphosed. It is possible to manage organizations of a few thousand people by human touch but to manage organizations of Lakhs of people working at multiple locations, belonging to different nationalities, following different cultures and transiting at the speed of thought; the only way is to create infallible “Systems & Processes”.
It is not possible to manage people through cult like cultures. They are to be connected by virtue of top-lines, bottom-lines, KRAs and deliverables. Over here, there is another very important point, the new culture in the society is staring us in our face and telling us that now the individuality is taking a lead over collectiveness. Be it the rebel inside the kids or the instinct inside adults, the disillusionment with the identifying is giving way to resurrection of identity. In such a social setup, it is very difficult to ask 30 year and 40 year olds to blindly follow a set of unexplainable regulations created by management in ivory towers, or to feel a moral obligation to live up to the expectation of an inspired individual or entrepreneur. It becomes even more difficult when we talk about the knowledge-workers. They are the Homo sapiens in the literal sense and thus their individuality is very strong; in fact that’s where their value lies. To manage their behaviours or to want them to have similar lifestyles, habits and cloned moves is a pretty utopian idea. Organizations have to understand that they are supposed to manage the people’s actions, not the people.This leads us to a pretty big question. What would then happen to those much sought-after values and ethics? Will they die their natural death? Or are we talking about their altogether removal from the scene?
Well! Not even in one’s wildest dreams should one think about absolute exclusion of values from business and management. It will be hara-kiri. But then what is the solution? First let’s understand the term ‘values’ well. Values are different from morals. Morals are more universal; they are more human, more generic and more existential; thus they address the basic virtues of being in a society. They cannot be changed by personal whims and fancies. After all, ‘to have respect for human life’ will have relatively more proximity to consensus than other factors.
On the other hand, values are more personal, more subject to differences and more governed by personal priorities, likes and dislikes. They are more of beliefs of founder members or top-people asked to be followed by the people who want to breathe under the same roof. Values try to form ‘cult like cultures’ with a lot of cultural Do’s while morals and ethics try to form a human environ with a set of cultural Don’ts. So the organizations are supposed to have their souls intact and their spine upright. In a way, it is more of MBO (Management By Objective) than MBWA (Management By Walking Around).
Doing this becomes even more important in context of the growing consolidation in the business milieu. When organizations merge or get acquired, then the cult-like-cultures make it very difficult for the two entities to work well in tandem. There is a fundamental incongruence caused due to the extremes traversed by the people whose elongated shadows the organizations are. This causes a great deal of resistance and the outcome is neither good for the organization nor for the customers who are the Raison d'être (reason for being) of the organizations. If in turn, the organizations were system-driven then it would have been easy to establish an apparent WYSIWYG (What You See Is What You Get) rather than waiting for the ghosts to come out of closets at their own whims. Thus it is important for management to build a culture of fluidity as a body; with a brain of systems and a soul of morals.
Moreover, these morals and ethics are not supposed to be enforced by a series of speeches, photographs of founders on the walls or emotional appeals made by top-management. The systems should take care of this by laying down the processes based on factors of the likes of feedbacks, appraisals and procedures. But then another question arises, where will go the socializing, the warmth of togetherness? If everything would be done so objectively then it would be a challenge to bring people closer and thus the organizational-belongingness would be a concept difficult to bring in. For addressing this problem, system has to create occasions to kindle that togetherness. You might feel that all this is getting too manufactured and fabricated but before getting satirical about this, try to understand that why don’t we celebrate Diwali everyday? If you would observe then you will realize that religion (at least the ritual side of it) is the best working phenomenon and its management is superb because there is a system at work. Everything is almost religiously defined and there is pretty less one can change. The system has created occasions when the togetherness is solicited. In organizational terms, be it month-end parties or town-hall meetings, they will facilitate the camaraderie.
The system goes even further. It is not only about regulating or for that matter only connecting; system has to work beyond that. Let’s look at the contemporary business scenario again. What’s happening around? It is not the bigger that is beating the smaller; in fact it is the faster that is beating the slower! With liberalization and globalization, the fear of losing has increased because till now we were regulating the competition but now when we have thrown the fringes open, nobody knows who will enter tomorrow. As a result, the first-mover advantage has been replaced by the fast-mover advantage. Capital is not scarcer any more! If you have an idea, there are people waiting to get bought into it. With advent of technology and the open-source culture in the air, technique is no more a differentiator either. So then, what’s the differentiator?
In such circumstances, the only differentiator is the quality of ideas that the system generates. The last sentence might seem contradictory, with ideas and systems featuring in the same line. But it is true, it truly is! Now you can not depend on a stroke of luck or a bout of inspiration to have a brilliant idea. You have to make it a habit ingrained by a system devised to challenge (or force) the neurons to breed brilliance between the axons and the dendrites. For instance, take 3M, a company which has been there for an eon. It has made a system of innovation. It has been reported being fanatically religious about its divisions creating a certain percentage of their revenues through products which did not exist a ‘certain number’ of years ago. So the organizations can succeed only if they remember the euphemism of ‘learning, unlearning and relearning’. And it is not only about innovating, it is also about inventing. Organizations need to invest in traversing the un-chartered territories of both ‘natural and applied’ sciences to find that all-important Midas-touch. Here comes the importance of research and patents!
The conventional definition of marketing, starting with identifying the need is no more valid. The market-research may lead to a successful financial-quarter of business but if an organization wants to make an indelible mark then it has to create products which tell the questionnaire-respondents and focus-groups about the desires that they also didn’t know existed in them. It is about shaping the future through seeing the ideas by getting into the right-brain of a consumer while dodging the left-brain in the process. It is about reading between the lines. If we talk in the lingo of Paulo Coelho’s ‘Alchemist’, it is like following the omens spread all over, to travel a journey of faith towards something that is Maqtub. Companies should understand that it is an era where desires are beating the needs hands down.
Here, we come to yet another important point and it is the need for system to facilitate growth ceaselessly. Management has to make sure that in addition to the important concepts of business model and value chain, it has to take care of the most important one…Scalability. The business in contemporary world is about scale. What matters is your ability to back your momentum with the resources and managerial capacity. Business has become asset-intensive and needs productivity at the heart of it, and the fun part is that one needs to grow appetite and edibles simultaneously. For this, one needs to have a global vision right at the outset because the market will not allow opportunity for mid-course correction that easily now.
As they say “your world expands and shrinks in proportion of your mind”, and in organization’s case, its mind is the Human Resource working in it! So it becomes important for management to infuse leadership at every level of the organization. Organizations need ‘intrapreneurship’ to substantiate entrepreneurship. Managers need to understand ‘Hows’ as well as ‘Whys’ of their work. This again can not be done without a leadership-engine in place. Be it right succession-planning or spotting the right talent, management needs to prepare a culture where people get systematic opportunity to voice their opinions and represent their school-of-thought. This would help management build an apparatus where management, leadership and entrepreneurship, all will become one. And then the organizations will live up to their inherent promise…promise of being like organisms…with evolution at the core of their being!
By winning 5 consecutive World Boxing Championship Golds in a row, she is now eyeing to London Olympics 2012.
Mangte Chungneijang Merykom also known as MC Mary Kom or Mary Kom has once again brought accolades to Indian sports by winning 5th World Championship Gold Medal recently in the competition held at Bridgetown.
Mary Kom took to sports in an effort to provide some financial support to her family. She was initially an all-round athlete, and 400-m and javelin were her pet events. When Dingko Singh returned from Bangkok (Asian Games) with gold, she was inspired and thought to give Boxing a try. She began boxing in 2000 and was a quick learner who preferred to be put through the same paces as the boys around her.
Seeing Mary’s potential and determination, Manipur State coaches Shri. Narjit Singh and Shri. Kishan Singh decided to take her under their wings. Mary was taught finer details and absorbed it all. The encouragement and support by Shri. Khoibi Salam, Secretary of MABA and Vice President of IABA, and Manipur Boxing Association was also a turning point for Mary Kom.
Manipur Government gave her the post of Sub-inspector of police in 2005. She was promoted to inspector of police in 2008 and again promoted to the post of Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) in 2010. She was also given a house at National Games Village without any cost for her outstanding achievements. She initially tried to keep her interest from her father, M. Tonpu Kom, and mother Saneikham Kom, but winning a 2000 state championship got her photograph in the newspaper.
After winning her first title and Best Boxer at the First State Level Invitation women's boxing championship in Manipur in 2000, Marykom went on to win the gold in the Seventh East India Women’s Boxing Championship held in West Bengal and five subsequent Indian National Championships from 2000 to 2005. She also embarked on an international campaign that has brought her a series of gold medals and honors.
Mary kom's "international gold rush" finally began with the Second Asian Women's Championship in Hissar and continued with a win in the Third Asian Women's Championship, held in Taiwan.
The next year, she struck gold at the Second AIBA World Women’s Senior Boxing Championship held from October 21–27, 2002 in Antalya, Turkey, winning the 45-kg division by defeating Svetlana Miroshnichenko of the Ukraine in her semi-final and Jang Song-Ae of North Korea in the final.
She also took gold in the 46-kg division of the Women's World Boxing Tournament in Tønsberg, Norway from 27 April to 2 May 2004, defeating Derya Aktop of Turkey by RSCO-2 in the semi-final and Xia Li of China by RSCO-2 in the final. She was also the Witch Cup Tournament champion in Hungary in 2004. At the August 2004 Asian Women's Boxing Championships in Taiwan she defeated Gretchen Abaniel of the Philippines 35-11 in the 46-kg final. She successfully defended her 46-kg world title at the Third AIBA Women's World Championships held from 25 September to 2 October 2005 in Podolsk, Russia.
She won the final by a 28-13 score over Jong Ok of North Korea. On 23 November 2006 at the AIBA World Championships at Talkatora Indoor Stadium in New Delhi, Mary kom again won the 46-kg division - this time with a 22-7 decision over her Venus Box Cup final opponent Steluta Duta of Romania.
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