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Thursday, July 21, 2005

never cry in a crisis

Yes, ‘never cry in a crisis’ is the quote of the day – rather, welcome crisis with open arms. Management by crisis is a branch of Management that we Indians have mastered. No one knows better than us that, if we delay the inevitable, the problem, either blows over, or is solved by others who are affected or loses importance, being overtaken by more serious problems.

Whether in the immediate family or at work, things have to be managed. Those, who foresee problems and take corrective actions in time, generally do not face crisis situations and are supposed to be good managers by the world at large. But, in the Indian context, they are considered to be fools because, if you are unable to capitalize on a crisis, you are no good as a manager. You are incompetent. Crisis is the nursery where efficient managers are born. Whenever a problem arises, look the other way, hide your head in the sand like an ostrich and pretend that the problem is nothing but a figment of the imagination. That is the secret of success, that is how people flourish, that is how budgets are thrown completely out of gear – an initial sanction of one hundred crores and a time frame of two years stretches tenfold in terms of both finance and time. Cost and time overruns are the order of the day. The person who dreams up the project is seldom there to see it to its completion.

Crisis management gives rise to the opportunists who reap the benefits. In the work place, there are people who remain in the sidelines and pop up JIT with smiles and solutions. When a subordinate or a junior foresees a problem and apprises him of the same, he is quick to snub him and laugh it off. They are all attention when the boss opens his mouth; they are experts in the art of deception and staunch believers of the MBC theory. Just imagine, if we plan our activities with care and provide adequate buffers into it, we can avoid being caught on the wrong foot and blink at the last minute hoping for a miracle to happen.

A simple activity like going out on a holiday and ensuring a comfortable journey by booking tickets in advance makes more sense than running from pillar to post at the last moment and being at the mercy of unscrupulous travel agents. This is an example taken at random to illustrate the point.

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