Many bosses in most corporate ask to the people for all relevant references before start of any work or project. Their 'reference orientation' always 'over powers' the target and result orientation of their organization. But unfortunately, most corporate believe and venerate such employees (reference mongers) as 'meticulous' and 'disciplined' performers. Seeking and scrutinizing references before start of any project is not wrong. That is how one should be.
It is impossible to take up any project in the corporate without references is not the sign of strength but actually it speak only about the weak leadership quality of such people.
Innovation and creative approach cannot have any references to cross check whether such an approach is right or wrong. Whereas for 'copying' and 'duplicating' references are inevitable. The too much of reference orientation in people, the corporate must view seriously. Such people in general are 'copycats' and may not be 'creators' or 'innovators'.
To sustain in business, some element of copycat approach may be inevitable but by being 'copycats', no one can build a great future to the organization or to oneself. The syndrome of this 'reference seeking' approach is more pronounced in people who are working in 'single man' driven corporate. Showing, appeasing, pleasing, cajoling etc., are more required to survive in single man driven corporate than in multi national companies like Unilever or Proctor & Gamble or Laurel etc.
Look at the nature and its species diversity. How each species would have been created on earth for the first time? Does nature had any reference for elephant or lion or tiger or deer etc., when these species were created for the first time? Many evolutionary and adaptation process over time only would have shaped up these animals as what they are today.
No life form on earth when it was created for the first time, nature would have ever had any reference to follow. But when the nature has decided to hand over the responsibility of continuing the respective generations to the respective species, certainly nature had left the reference.
Understandably, for the purpose of copying and duplicating, references became available. Certainly for improving and improvising also references may be required.
The question that seeks an answer in the corporate world is whether they 'misjudge' the copycats as super performers. The corporate must introspect and unravel the facts. Failing which, they may develop their competency only in copying the ideas of the competitors and will not be creating anything innovative or path-breaking approaches.
Ultimately their entire business success lies at the innovation of the competitor and their success. Their business share also will come only from the space outside competition.
Follow the path of nature, learn and implement the 'lessons of nature' and be successful.
Dr S Ranganathan, ClinRise Derma Pvt., Ltd., Chennai
Learn more from the management book – 'Jungle wisdom for corporate management – lessons from university of nature' by Swami Sukhabodhananda and Dr S Ranganathan