I love watching mother nature sometimes.
One thing I learnt whilst living in Asia is that you have to learn to live with it because a lot of the time it lives in your house. No matter if you are on the top floor of a skyscraper, I can guarantee you will still find ants in your kitchen!
I remember one day watching a group of about 10 ants lifting a grain of rice up a wall. The skill and precision they used revealed just how intelligent these creatures were. As I watched them, I realized they must have been communicating in some fashion because the complexity of the way they manoeuvred around the grain of rice looked similar to a bunch of highly experienced removal men carrying a piano down a flight of winding stairs.
I then thought to myself, wouldn’t it be amazing if CEO’s knew how to get their employees to work as intelligently as these ants?
Unfortunately, when it comes to many industries, the opposite seems to be true.
Many companies I have worked with seem to deploy competition amongst their staff believing that this will motivate them to reach their targets.
I don’t understand this approach at all. From what I have seen it creates a bad atmosphere of dishonesty and mistrust amongst co-workers where individuals are only concerned about what they can get out of the business, now what is best for the businesses itself.
It also encourages employees to work against their co-workers and revel in their failure! Why? Because when other people fail and they succeed, it makes them look good.
Sad, but true I’m afraid.
Surely a business would benefit more if everyone worked together, supported one another and shared their knowledge rather than keep it to themselves.
“But it works”, a CEO told me recently about his company which encourages internal competition
Yes, and so does a Robin Reliant, but that doesn’t mean to say it is the best car on the market.
In my opinion, competition is overrated unless it is used for sports and recreational fun.
I have found that I learn so much more when I share my knowledge with other people in a similar field to me rather than keep information to myself because it is USUALLY reciprocated. Obviously, not everyone feels the same way and I do meet a lot of people who are on the take and not willing to give.
When I do meet such people, I know that I will not work with them. But when I find people are equally as willing to share their knowledge with me as I am with them, then I will not only trust them but will go out of my way to help them too.
If they are truly willing to help me without thought of personal gain, then I know they have the best interests of their customers and other people at their heart too. These are definitely people worth collaborating with because they have the wisdom to understand happiness comes from helping others to succeed, not from what is in it for them.
Think rationally about this.
No one in society can survive alone. We need the support of people around us and therefore we need to work together to survive.
If you think you are independent and you can survive by yourself, tell me…did you make your own clothes? Did you grow the food that you eat? Did you make the car that you drive or build your home with your own hands?
Everything that we do, each and every day, is dependent on the other people around us. We HAVE to work together in order to survive and business is no different. A business is nothing more than a group of individuals working together to achieve a common goal.
And so where pray tell, does that leave space for internal competition?
Look forward to any thoughts on this article…????