The other day I was having a conversation on management and managerial skills, and there were certain aspects, which made me, think about the significance of “geography” in management. The below theory may not be immaculate but certainly gives food for thought!!!
Just imagine you are the CEO of a company, what kind of policies do you want to implement to motivate your employees? What kind of salary structure, insurance, retirement benefits or for that matter even “JOB SECURITY” do you want to provide?
Do you think these policies will change depending on the location of your company? If you feel you have come up with the best policies and it really doesn’t matter where the company is located then think again!!!
Each one of are brought up under a certain environment…after some time the culture gets imbibed in us so much that it’s very difficult for us to change. YES “CULTURE” is a very important word here. If you look deep into it you might realize the prosperity or the demise of your company might actually depend on this!!!
Lets take the example of certain well-known economies before we come to the Indian context. If we consider US of A they always have had the “Hire and Fire” policy. It works well for the company. When the markets are good and its smooth sailing, they hire. As soon as the going gets tough or they hit upon rough weather, they fire. But the bottom line is the people there are brought up in a nuclear family environment and they get used to such insecurities and are tougher to face such situations. Actually the people there are more motivated to perform and show their strength when the environment has been set up like this. They feel more at home and hence it’s a win-win situation for the employer.
In contrast lets consider Japan.
A country where joint family / strong family ties have the highest prominence. These people are brought up in a more secured environment. If we use the “Hire and Fire” policy then it would be a complete disaster. So companies here go for lifetime employment. The employees are by default motivated to improve theirs and in turn the company’s performance. Thus the inherent nature of the Japanese people makes their company (and hence the policy) tick.
Now lets consider our great INDIA.
As far as our culture goes there is not much of a difference between the Japanese and us. But adapting their strategy would definitely result in our downfall. The performance of our public sector (PSUs) or any government owned organizations is enough proof of this fact. We Indians are by default torpid or lazy and that marks the difference between the Japanese and us resulting in the failure of their strategy on us. Neither can we adapt the US strategy because by nature we ascribe for “Job Security” and we are not adept enough to handle such high insecurities leading to performance degradation and eventually the demise of the company. The fact that more than 80% of Indians in US are said to be very insecure and unhappy (stat taken from a survey made by a well known magazine) about their jobs, proves this point.
So what’s the solution if you are heading a company where most of the employees are Indians? The best method for us is to traverse the middle ground i.e we should have a policy where the employment is almost guaranteed (unless you screw up very badly in the company) but the salary structure should be totally performance oriented. It should be such that say only 10% of your total income should be basic and the rest should be dependent on the company’s performance and your contribution to it. In this way the employees will be motivated enough to work, prevents them from being lethargic and provides some kind of protection too.
What I just talked about is a prima facie view of things but somehow I feel this suits our culture the best, with our “health” indirectly connected to the health of the company :).