THE HANS INDIA | May 08,2017 , 09:09 AM IST
Picture: Representational Image
The subtle management message from the relationship between the ground squirrels and the rattle snakes, beyond the space/premises of ‘prey and predator’ relationship; the corporate world must decode and understand. The ground squirrel employs a novel management strategy to deal its enemy, which is very essential for the corporate people to know.
Ground squirrels, unlike most species of squirrels that are arboreal, are largely terrestrial. They live and nest in ground. Being a ground and burrow dweller, the ground squirrels face severe predation from snakes, especially the rattle snakes. Even if the squirrels try to hide inside the burrow, the snakes can easily reach the burrows and can eat them.
The options before the squirrels are
1. Fight and defeat the rattle snakes and other predators
2. Flee from the scene and become arboreal
3. Learn the art of dealing the enemy through some novel ways
The first option was difficult for the ground squirrels as they are neither physically strong nor have any means to deal the deadly venom of the rattle snake.
The second option was also not wise as predators are present everywhere and hence the ground squirrels seems to have not chosen the second option also.
The best way is to learn and be innovative & creative and deal the enemy. The ground squirrels indeed are very intelligent in their approach.
While dealing the enemy or the opponent, one need to study and learn about the opponent first, his or her weakness and strength etc. But most people would start supporting own fear, its effects and manifestations etc., than trying to know anything about the opponent.
Scientific studies have shown that the ground squirrels collect the freshly shed skin of rattle snakes and wipe their body with the rattle snake skin. This is done mainly to mask their body odour and to make scent of rattle snake skin.
It is known that the rattle snakes avoid the areas that are the dwelling places of another rattle snake. Further, when the body odour of the ground squirrel is masked by the scent of a rattle snake, the presence of ground squirrels go un-detected by the rattle snakes.
Most animals detect many things around them through the faculty of olfaction. The question is how the ground squirrels have learned the science of chemical ecology and predator’s behaviour. How smartly they employ the method of ‘odour’ based defense approach to deal the enemy.
Neither fight nor fleeing from the scene is wise and one has to be ‘wise’ to be ‘wise’. This extraordinary management message of the ground squirrels, the corporate employees must learn and follow.
Often people in the corporate encounter several problems either from the boss or from the peer group or sometime from subordinates. Instead of learning to handle the situation wisely, they get frustrated. More often than not most employees resorts to
A) Constant fight in the corporate
B) Flee from the scene
When the corporate employees fret with such situations, should see and learn innovative defense approaches from the small ground squirrels that are described as primitive animals in the mammalian order
Learn to be wise, your wisdom should come not from your mere strength or from your fear, but from understanding of the reality and only then you can find a near permanent solution to all your problems. This simple management message is what the ground squirrels convey to corporate.
Dr S Ranganathan