On responsibility

  • Episode 90
  • 05-12-2022
  • 08 Min Read
On responsibility

There could not be any society without some sort of management related issues. Neither our own homes nor our holy religious institutions are exceptions. This is an issue that raises its head, where more than two joins together with a common goal. Management related issues could perhaps be the most disturbing of social problems. These are related to personalities but have a sure cure. Dr A P J Abdul Kalam shared the secret of this magic panacea.

The place was Philadelphia and the situation was the Wharton India Economic Forum held on March 22, 2008. One man asked Dr Abdul Kalam an example of great people handling failure. It was actually a million-dollar question. Dr Abdul Kalam shared a live story. It was related to ISRO’s launch of SLV – 3 in 1979. The entire mission was under the control of Dr. Abdul Kalam.

The launch was scheduled in the evening at 7 PM and the press conference at 7.45 PM, the same day. SLV 3 was a fourstage vehicle weighing 17 tonnes. But this vehicle miserably failed and plunged down into the Bay of Bengal. During the press conference which succeeded, Prof. Dhavan appreciated the efforts of all the scientists who worked behind the project and assured the media that the same mistake won’t be repeated.

The experiment done in July next year was a grand success. This time, instead of Prof. Dhavan personally handling the press, he asked Dr A P J Abdul Kalam to face the press. Abdul Kalam said,

“I learned a very important lesson that day. When failure occurred, the leader of the organisation owned that failure. When success came, he gave it to his team. The best management lesson I have learned did not come to me from reading a book; it came from that experience.” An attitude to take responsibility for failures and share success with all team mates is the best solution to all management related issues.In a recent U S survey, it was found that the reason for most industrial labour unrest is that the management do not share the credit of success. Many people ask about a solution when the working team contains uncommitted workers. That always is a strategic issue, which is to be handled amicably. Let’s look at the technical points here. Nature or the universe accepts only responsible persons to higher positions, where stakes are decided by the percentage of responsibility one takes on. This, when put in other words, comes like this, “Those who would like to grow should always be ready to take the responsibility of everything they get involved in.”

Adam told God that it was Eve who cheated him, while Eve reported to God that it is the serpent that tempted her. So goes the story of responsibilities… Everybody passes it from person to person. Nobody is ready to take responsibility for even one’s own misdeeds!

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