Processes are necessary evil. My son wanted to swim. Since I was at home, I accompanied him to the swimming pool. My son wore the costume, picked the glasses, ear caps and his Identity card. I thought that my son is extra cautious but after reaching the pool, I realized that anyone who wanted to swim had to take the permission and until unless all these elements were there, permission was not granted. Then all the swimmers had to mandatorily take a bath before getting into the pool. This reminded me of the difficulties any business faces before actually getting on to business. Pool instructor was behaving like the regulatory body. However difficult and time taking the process was, finally my son was in the pool.
I started watching the activity in the pool. It was a decent sized pool with around thirty five children in the pool. Some children were good at swimming; some were trying to swim, some were using various aids provided by the regulator so that they do not drown. Safety of the children was the prime responsibility of the regulator hence all the bureaucracy and difficulty started making sense. Since there were so many children in the pool, they were crashing into each other. Since I was standing outside, I could see that most of the children were swimming on one side of the pool. I called my son and advised him to practice on the other side of the pool. This is where investors provide right guidance to the organizations. My son took the advantage and had early mover advantage.
My son swam there for few minutes and then more children started moving towards the open side of pool. This shift created another open area. This time I wanted my son to figure out the open area on his own. That gave a brilliant insight on why boards behave the way they behave at times. I was enjoying the sight of my son swimming. After some time, the dynamics in the pool attracted my attention. Few kids started swimming together. It seemed like a cartel. Other kids gave way to the group and suddenly this became the most influential group in the pool.
The group started taking liberty and attracted the attention of the regulator. Regulator moved one group member out of the pool. The others toned down a bit after the action. By this time, center of the pool was taken by the cartel and other kids had taken their comfortable corners. There were few carefree creatures like my son who were moving around the pool without getting in the depth of the dynamics. Soon cartel started playing a game among itself and after ten minutes they were settling the cheaters within. Friendly chases and punishments again attracted the regulator and half of the cartel was out of the pool.
Interestingly Parents or Guardians were sitting at the edges. Some were engaged with their children. Some were busy socializing with the other parents and some were busy with their phones. I was wondering that this is how investors spend their time and money. I did not think of return on investment while I accompanied my son for this venture. I could not see any one else thinking on the same lines, this was happening for fun. I immediately wanted my son to focus on studies because there return on investment was guaranteed. Swimming seemed like waste of time, energy and money. But I was still enjoying the sight of my son swimming and the happiness he had on his face.
Regulator approached me and offered me a seat. Regulator was happy with my son and said that my son is a well behaved child and has learnt swimming very quickly and right now regulator is monitoring and encouraging my son to build stamina. The chair, few words of recognition and smile on the face of my son helped me come out of the business like thinking. May be this is why successful business people invest in certain ventures which do not seem to make sense.
Suddenly I realized that I lost the track of my son. Before leaving the house, my son was arguing with my wife that why can’t he go alone for swimming. He thought that he was big enough to take care of himself. Most of the businesses think this way. I also echoed his thought process. My cautious life partner decided that I should accompany him. Now suddenly my son was out of sight. My eyes started exploring the entire pool. I was concerned about the safety of my son. It took less than twenty seconds to figure out that my son was chatting with one of his friends in the corner of the pool. I took a sigh of relief.
I asked my son to wrap up the session and come out. Wrapping up was not easy. First my son did not want to come out of the pool. Once he decided to come out, there was process. Processes are necessary evil.www.harjeetkhanduja.com by Harjeet Khanduja publishes HR relevant topics in layman language and redefines conventional concepts in current context without making HR too technical or complicated.