Article (September-2021)



Dr. Vinayshil Gautam

Designation : -   FRAS(London) Globally acclaimed Management Consultant

Organization : -  


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Change is a natural process. It is a part of life. Even the inanimate without life undergo change. The difference between the change in a live entity and a non-life entity is simple. A life entity has some extent of choice in the direction of change. Choices, amongst other things, will be exercised in terms of the nourishment it takes, the waste it throws out of its body and the way it copes with the impact of the environment. A non-life entity has no such directional change. It is under the effect of a simple physical and chemical process. 

Contemporary lives across the planet have been changing through the last nearly two years,periodically. In effect it has meant significant changes in the known ways of life.

The media and indeed the 'word' - whether written or oral- has tried to capture it, the best it can. The viewership of the electronic channels has exponentially increased. The printed word has not raked in the same kind of experience. Anxiety and the ability to cope with change and stress has become a touch stone. 

Effectiveness lies in the capacity to cope with anxiety. Coping with anxiety is easier when the facts are known, the physical and chemical processes are clear and there is a near consensus in the ways of coping. Covid-19 experience belies many of these assumptions. Hence there are local, regional and other variations within the rubric of governance. The governance process may itself be ill informed; it may be well informed; it may be political. It may take direction not from internal strength but the resultant of the impact of the forces operating on it. 

One doesn't have to go far. The current Afghan experience date lined 17th August 2021 is typical. The Taliban forces are yet to form the government. The serving President of the country has fled. The serving Vice-President has declared himself to be the interim President. It is not clear from the media where the, so estimated, over Three Hundred Thousand Afghan army is of today. Some are reported to have joined the Taliban, others are reported to have moved over to neighbouring countries and clearly there are others whose identity and inclination is to surface in the media. As of 17th August, two or three countries have announced their intent to recognise the Taliban.

Hopefully, dear reader, by the time you read these lines, the situation would have, perhaps, become clearer or would be on the way towards some clarity. That is another issue.

This text is devoted to the theme of change. Change is eternal, it is the shape, pace and direction of change which needs to be comprehended and acted upon. The role of human will in this whole process is at the best of one of the impact making factors. In spite of a very worthy emphasis on the role of 'will power' to set directions, the ground conditions have a more embellished story to roll out. 

Iron will power, no matter how indomitable cannot generate resources; it can lead to generation of options and possible innovation. The truth of life is innovation works many a times but it is not a guarantee to success. There is a whole constellation of factors which generate change and a whole host of factors which help to cope with change. Whether it works or not and in which direction, is a complex interplay of forces which may be at times very difficult to forecast, extrapolate or even visualise.

Wisdom lies in working on oneself to keep oneself a functioning whole. If one adds the spiritual element, life becomes easier. The total interplay of energy and life has its own sequence. There have been attempts to decipher it by the rishis, the seers, the sage etc. Those which have the ability to realise that being alive is, as yet, an incomprehensible process in its totality of matter and spirit, would have a point. 

Those issues cannot be resolved here. What however needs to be registered is that since human physical life has a beginning and an end, change has to be wrought within that frame. Human capacity to change is limited between the givens of the factors which impact the individual's personality and the persona. This has to be taken together with the capacity to change. 

In all this the mind plays a very powerful role. That may be a matter of still further exploration.

The issue however is simpler when focussed on the business of the Business Manager. Change requires ability to sense and seize opportunities; it requires the need to grow and the need to harvest the results of resources and ingenuity. Continuous change in synergy with the external world can and often does spell success.

Dr. Vinayshil Gautam