On Management

Horses are trained to run, not think.

Don’t confuse them. It is not worth it.

Race horses are trained to run like the wind. It is not their responsibility to build a good track, a consistent fence, find a decent jockey or to rate their performance. Horses are trained and disciplined to run, not think. Employees with specific competencies that have been identified are a lot like race horses. A cleaner is meant to clean, not manage. A sales guy is meant to sell, not strategize. Each individual (with competencies identified) is a race horse with a track.

Horses do not build the fence.

Because the horse is dressed, reared and trained to run. It is the manager’s responsibility to make sure that the fence is consistent, well defined and strong. Fence provides the horse with a direction and defines boundaries. Make sure the employees have those instead of having your horses worrying about fences.

Horses do not build the track.

That is because the horses run on the track we provide them with. If the managers ignore the race track, allow it to contain rocks and multiple pointless hurdles, you are asking for serious trouble. The horses will refuse to run on a painful track. they will refuse to mend it (because it has been your responsibility from the very start) and will jump over the fence looking for greener pastures.

Horses do not like being stopped.

Once the track and the fence is ready and the horses start to run, you cannot expect them to halt at your moment’s whim. Horses should not be interrupted when they are running on the track while respecting the fence. Let them finish a lap and then you communicate. Not as and when you fancy a chat or a training session.

Horses do not like to think much.

True story. If you have 3 (red, blue, green) colored doors on the track and you have trained the horses to choose just one color out of 3 to pass through, it would be easiest if the order doesn’t change on track. If you keep playing around with the color sequence, either the horses will slow down or they will stop caring about colors after a while. Lesson to be learnt- give the horses a system (track) but a simple system (a single track) and NOT a complicated system (track with multiple colored doors). That is because the horses do not like to think much when they are running. They are fed/paid to run.

Horses need a track to run on.

The most important point was being saved for the last. Employees come to you for the job description. Horses love tracks to run on, they cannot be race horses without a proper track and a proper direction. Open fields seldom work for employees, unless you’re looking for rockstars willing to share the burden of a team member. Get these things right and you’ll have an easier time dealing with your rockstar race horses.

love and peace

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