Growth – The Organic Way

Whenever I am driving on a highway, I try to maintain constant speed. Maintaining the tender balance on the accelerator gives a certain thrill.  I can only do this when no vehicles ahead of me.  What I observe is vehicles behind me turn restless. Even though I am going at max speed limit,  people look to overtake me.  May be they do not like to cruise at constant speed.  They either need to accelerate or decelerate.

That is what we see even in economies.  Companies are expected to grow, to look normal, else are considered stagnant or dead.  If everything else around us is moving at same speed as us,  we are stagnant with respect to things around, even though we are traveling at enormous speed.  In this race,  we tend to go ahead of others and try to stretch ourselves in all possible ways. This artificial stretch gives us a sense of motion but we are moving away from our core. This is what we are doing with our companies and economies. The economists in positions of decision making should understand that the size of earth is not growing by 3% every year, nor the resources growing. The only way to grow the economy in conservative terms is to produce and consume more goods, causing more pollution. In business, we target plausible growth but in the process push ourselves as if it is only way to survive.  We have heard this in history books.  Small kingdoms dreaming to be the empires, are in constant war with neighbors. Few of them get successful but end up breaking up into pieces as they cannot maintain the vast empire. In today’s world, actual wars are replaced by non-violent ways-economic and ideological wars.

Today’s businesses do the same to capture the market. As we pull ourselves more,  we break into pieces.  In this process, they break into groups, away from their core. We have seen many examples – Shivaite-Vaishnavite, Shia-Sunni, Catholic-Protestant ideological clashes. Both the groups, though sharing the same source, claim their path to be only true, but there is a chance that both are true.  If there are infinite possibilities of reaching point A from point B,  there could be infinite ways to know truth. If we traveled the path, we would know.

Running Behind Profits:
If we take the case of Facebook. In pursuit of profits, users’ data was allegedly given to other companies.  It lost the trust of some users.  Growth cannot be always be through stretching in one direction we think is best. If growth of a company is only measured in terms of revenue, profit alone then, it will not last long as it takes a lot from the employees, owners, stake holders and customers. Growth is best if it is in all directions, like a lake. A lake expands its shores in all directions during rains and humble enough to shrink back. Even though it expands or shrinks, it does not lose its core. Similarly, growth of a company has to be a product of willing contributions from all the employees, suppliers and customers. Also the growth should have a positive impact on the lives of the employees. Everyone should take pride in their role and contribution and supporting each other in ups, downs and flat roads!

Downtime is actually a good time to take stock of the company, resources, skill set and other factors. Its time to improve overall process, improve and upgrade skills through training. One has to experience stillness to enjoy movement! One cannot be in constant expansion, to miss the beauty of stillness. Let’s move with a sense of stillness; and be ready to become still while on the move.


The Greek Party

A boy named Greece was invited to a party. He was a simple boy and was excited about going to the party hosted by EU.
He naively asked, “Do I have bring any presents?”.
“No, you just come and enjoy”, replied Germany

The boy was welcomed to a grand opening. There was so much food, different varieties of cakes – chocolate, vanilla, French, German.  “Can I have everything, Do I have to pay anything?” asked the boy.
“Yes, what you can have is unlimited, its free” replied France.
Greece had eaten enough for a week, he was so happy. He wished there was a party once every week.EU said, “Its pleasure having you here, you can come daily”,
“Daily!!”, the boy was dumbstruck.
He went to the party daily, he stopped cooking at home and sold his cookware, Spent his money in buying rich German cars, French jets, Korean TVs.

Life was a dream until one day, he was not allowed into the party.
“The party was free for only a week, You need to pay for rest of the parties.”, said IMF, the party organizer.
“But the invitation did not say anything. See, its here, written in Greek” bemoaned the boy.
IMF showed the little note at the corner, *CONDITIONS APPLY.
“Its not written in Greek!”
“You could have asked or found a translator” quipped EU.
“You cannot do this, I forgot how to cook, I do not have equipment to cook, I will go hungry.”
“You got a week to pay off your arrears, or you will be expelled”

If Greece does not meet Tuesday night deadline, it will be the first developed nation to default on debt payment.
The Free Trade agreements, to boost the flow of goods more freely are faulty and exploitative.  The goods are just moving in one direction and some nations are losing their work force, industries. Greek yoghurt is famous but I won’t be surprised if they do not make it in Greece anymore, they may be just importing from behind the Alps!

The so called Free Trade Agreements(FTAs) have destroyed corn farming in Mexico (Mexico receives corn, it send drugs back!), shut many industries in eastern Europe,  FTAs are beautiful thing if they do not destroy the local industries and agriculture. They have to complimentary to existing livelihood.

The free money that is available world over to boost the economies around the world is destroying some. You will lose money in switzerland, if you invest in bonds, as there is enough free cash!
There is no limit to the money we can print, but there are limits to resources available. you cannot print water, oil, air!

ISIS, new global terrorist organization, has taken a leaf from globalization. They have  diverse fighters sourced from the banks of all world rivers. Britishers need not go and die in Tunisia if ISIS had stuck to its territory in Syria. Instead they are forging Free Terror Agreements ( FTAs) with different regions of the world. The way, the world has one factory in CHINA, ISIS(now you cannot blame it to be communist) wants to be the world’s Terror factory!

Greece has recognized that the party has come to an end the hard way. And now ISIS has to recognize that they cannot get weapons from its patrons forever, the Greek Party will come to an end one day, and also the world too should know it…..