Capital Talk: Organised change

  • Madhusheel Arora, Hindustan Times, Chandigarh
  • Updated: Aug 30, 2015 12:40 IST

What is the most coveted hard-skill in employees? The answer in today’s multimedia and fast-paced world has to be the ‘ability to organise and make sense of information’. One could easily dismiss this contention as being too frivolous and something that a midlevel secretary should be able to do in his/her sleep.

This might be correct, but is not right. Top corporate honchos, in fact, do need this skill in their DNA (the term that has recently been ‘trending’ in quite another context).

Sample this, Google’s recent decision to reorganise itself into an umbrella company, Alphabet, with different companies made responsible for different products, services and revenue streams, is a re-organisation of a world-class company.

The consequences of the new setup would be clear some time later, but it does make business sense, as the mechanics of Internet search undergoes a transformation.

Of what relevance can getting more organised be of relevance to a business owner in the tricity. The answer is that at the end of the day, human beings are pattern-finding and recognition machines. This ability to make sense of information around us is what makes us unique and ‘organised’ and some people do have this ability ingrained, while others are given the short handle as far as the imprint of this ability is concerned.

The key is organisation can be learned and all MBA courses, when distilled to their core, actually attempt to make us master this fundamental skill.

This teaching of organisation is also a very fine business opportunity and one that could actually be the fundamental base of the curriculum for our grandchildren, 30 years from now. In the tricity especially, one can find a lot of asymmetry in the way businesses run and operate their establishments.

There is little premium put on organisation — as most tricity residents have been leading a luxurious and pampered life not of our own making — and thus we end up with traffic jams of our own making. We also see a lot of businesses closing after half-hearted attempts that go nowhere. Services offered are more in the form of someone doing you a favour and there seems to be little one could do about it. We can actually do with better organisation of our traffic, homes, parking and the problem of stray dogs. Most critically, such intervention is needed in the fields of healthcare and education.

Healthcare needs a lot of reorganisation and recent attempts to take everything online and target at reducing the queues at our public health facilities are commendable, but more could be done. As individuals, we need to organise our lives around our health — something that has become a victim to the information age.

Education, too, is fundamental driving force that continues to be in need of extensive restructuring.

For starters, the education system needs to get its bearings right and be more tilted towards practical-oriented learning. With cost being a major deterrent towards any such leanings, low-cost solutions suitable to the Indian pocket need to be found, and quickly.

Skilling and apprenticeship is something that has caught the fancy of policy makers, but their end-result is something that will take time to bear fruit.

We do not have time to wait for the results of the long-winded programmes, yet we do not seem to have any other alternative, but to be patient.

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