"WHERE KNOWLEDGE IS WEALTH"

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Please Don’t Read This….. Prof.M.S.Rao

“Never look who is right and wrong. Always look what is right and wrong.” – Prof.M.S.Rao

When you look at individuals there will be involvement of egos and emotions. On the contrary, when you look at the issues there will be no individual preferences and prejudices. Better judgment prevails.

Susan was working in a multinational company in India as an Human Resource (HR) Manager. Her role was to recruit the candidates for the company and to ensure smooth functioning of office administration. She was a smart worker and built a reputation for herself from superiors by working for six years. The top management also respected and consulted her on several occasions. She did not talk to anyone unnecessarily at the work place and she meant business. She was 33 years old. She was bold and beautiful. She was polite and well mannered. She was a woman with strong character. But she was stubborn by nature. She disliked office politics.

Ron joined in the same company who was hard working and was yet to prove his abilities and establish his credentials. Prior to joining this organization, he had 18 years of industry experience in several companies and he was 39 years old. As per the rules of the company, Ron had to work with Susan initially. He was a hard worker and rose from ranks. He learnt bitter lessons in his life and knew the value of life. But he was adamant by nature. Both Ron and Susan respected each other and had been working together.

Susan was introvert, by nature, and hardly mingled with other employees. At the same time, she never kept ill will against anybody. She was a principled woman having exposure to outside world. She was combination of education, intellect and beauty with grace which was a rare combination. She was good at heart and helpful. Seeing the close and cordial relations between Susan and Ron, a few people working in the office felt jealousy. Since Susan never socialized with others and her cordial relations with Ron upset a few of their colleagues.

Ron also never socialized with anyone as he believed in his office work although he was an extrovert by nature. Ron initially moved closely with a colleague by name John. But John started speaking ill of Susan to Ron which Ron did not like. Gradually Ron distanced himself away from John who tried to settle his scores with Susan as they worked together in the past. Ron was basically an independent thinker and never listened to others and he followed his heart rather than looking things from the mind of others. Ron did not appreciate negative things being talked by John against Susan whom he respected at the core.

Ron’s gelling with Susan in a friendly manner upset a few and especially two female colleagues. They tried to create rift between them by talking ill of Susan with Ron. Ron never liked to entertain negative people and was totally against office politics. Since the plan failed to work, they attempted to poison the mind of Susan who initially resisted the same. But over a period of time, Susan stopped talking to Ron and the latter did not know the reasons but Ron sensed some problem. However he began interacting with Susan with the same spirit to keep the things going on smoothly. Since Susan began neglecting Ron, he also began concentrating on work and avoided Susan totally except whenever there was need for official interaction and communication.

In fact, Susan touched the subconscious mind of Ron. As a result, Ron began thinking about Susan frequenlty and deeply. Ron was not able to concentrate on his work properly. For Ron, Susan was the second woman to enter in his life and the first woman was his wife.

At heart, Ron was thankful to Susan as she helped him to groove within the system. He developed admiration towards her but never revealed to others at the workplace even to Susan. In fact, Susan touched the heart of Ron.

One day, Susan told Ron to collect resumes from the candidates who came in for walk-in interview. Ron got up from his cubicle and asked her whether to give the same to Senior Manager. She said, “Yes”. Ron was energetic by nature; he rushed immediately to get the resumes and collected from the candidates. Subsequently, Ron rushed to the Senior Manager and handed over the resumes and chatted with him for some time.

Susan who was waiting outside the Senior Manager’s cabin took Ron to nearby room with anger and shouted at him. Both had heated conversation for some time.

Susan questioned Ron, “Who told you to hand over the resumes to Senior Manager?”

Ron replied, “When I asked you, you told to hand over to Senior Manager. Therefore, I handed over to him.”

Susan shouted, “You rushed inside the room. But I told you to hand over to Jim.”

Ron said, “You told me to hand over to Senior Manager. Therefore, I handed over the same.” And he added, “Why do you make it a big issue?”

Susan shouted, “You did not listen properly and your behavior is not good”.

Ron did not want to hurt her and asked, “Ok! Tell me in which way my behavior is bad? And I will change my behavior.” And he added further, “You keep something else in your heart and talk something else outside. I don’t like this. I am straightforward. I respect you a lot from the core of my heart. But every time, you listen to negative people and rush to wrong conclusions about me.”

Susan said, “Stop talking all that! Next time don’t repeat like this.”

Ron pacified, “Ok! I will not do like this. But it all happened due to your miscommunication and let us close the issue here itself.”

Susan cooled down her temper and said, “Now you go outside the room.”

Ron left the room puzzled, shocked and it was first time in his life a woman took him to task for none of his mistakes. But since he respected Susan at the core of his heart he didn’t like to hurt her in any way.

Outside the room, a few office friends asked Ron to find out what had happened. He did not reveal what really happened inside the room as he was basically a confidential person by nature.

After some time, Ron called Susan telephonically and explained his stand that things went wrong due to improper communication. And he apologized her for the incident. Susan said that she was in a position to take action against him but said that she would not initiate any action against him. Ron asserted that he was not bothered for any kind of action but more worried if Susan was hurt.

The issue depressed Ron for many days as he failed to analyze where he went wrong. He was not worried about the incident but more worried as he liked Susan very much. Ron kept internalizing her and thinking of Susan all the time. It disturbed his peace and sleep. He tried to communicate the same with Susan number of times but the latter never gave such an opportunity.

After reading this, please post your valuable comments directly on the blog itself:

Was it a conflict?
If it was a conflict, what led to this conflict?
Was it due to miscommunication?
Was it due to improper communication of Susan?
Was it due to lack of understanding of Ron?
Was it due to clash of egos?
Who was responsible for this conflict - Susan or Ron?
Was there anything hidden between these two personalities?
Did the real issues come up or anything still hidden between them?
Was there any role of third person for this rift?
Was the conflict worth calling for attention?
Who was wrong?
What were the other hidden reasons?

The author invites your own comments.

21 comments:

Anonymous said...

This is Ragini.
It might be due to the lack of understanding of Ron. As you have pointed out that she will not talk to anyone unnecessarily she might have spoke to Ron to make him comfortable in the organization as a part of her role (HR manager) as he was new to that organization with very good experience. But For Ron, Susan was the second woman to enter in his life and the first woman was his wife. Here is the difference between them and as she is a very intellectual, independent girl she might have not listened to any of her colleagues because she is in a position to differentiate what is good and what is bad.

Prashant said...

Susan kept something in her mind and acted. First of all, it was not a conflict. The issue appears to be silly but has underlyig causes.

In any conflict, the real reasons never come out. And it is very difficult to probe a woman's heart. Susan was an introvert and a principled woman. She should have communicated the real reasons properly and openly to Ron and settled the issue forever.

Anand K. Ghurye said...

Our mind is supposed to be empty space . We mistake the contents of the mind to be mind itself . That is why whatever communication goes inside the mind gets contaminated with the contents that are already there . This may lead to miscommunication and the subsequent things as happened in this case .

A.S.L said...

Apsolutely, it is clash of egos which have led to miscommunication and have given ample space for negetive thinking by Susan (because negetive approach has been advocated or fuelled by her office colleagues). Ron is not free of guilt here, because the same ego problem is responsible for either his depression or his not being able to convince Susan of the real problem. Ron, being the subordinate to Susan was caught in inferiority complex, and Susan being the boss of Ron kept herself in superior complexity, which has resulted in miscommunication or wrong and negetive perceptions against each other and it has been further engulfed by the office colleagues.

A S L Narasimha Rao.

Anonymous said...

Both Susan and Ron are responsible for this conflict. They never communicated with each other directly resulting into misunderstanding.

Both Susan and Ron should come forward and build bridges. Life is very short. Susan should avoid two negative female colleagues gradually. She should think independently.

Anonymous said...

sir my name his ganesh

There was a communication gap between them.

Anonymous said...

Susan was responsible for the conflict because she got inspiration from her friends

rama krishna

Dr. K. Mishra said...

The case study does not highlight about the hidden data of communication i.e. the emotional elements involved between Susan and Ron. Unless it is revealed it is difficult to come a conclusion who is responsible for this conflict.

Anonymous said...

This is a case of personalizing the 'official things.' Ron, "A man moved by the personality and character of Susan, always tried to look at the HR Manager as 'his personal' rather than a senior colleague.
He was expecting from Susan things, which he would expect from his girlfiend.But his thinking is one way traffic. He is not understanding the fact that Susan is just considering him as another junior colleague. He has not come out of the typical teens' mindset usually found in undergraduates. He has a lot of personal admiration for the manager which gradually developed into a knind of 'soft corner towards' Susan.When she pointed out the mistake, he was unable to digest and tried to look into the problem through 'his

When the line of authority is clearly defined in an organization this kind of confusion doesn't arise. Moreover, this might not have been the first instance of conducting walk-in interviews in such a big MNC. Their conduct Susan and Ron) should have been guided by the earlier precedence.

Though, the incident is very small, Susan, who had built up a good reputation over the years through her professional approach towards the job, feared losing that good image before her superiors.She was not in a position to be pointed out by some one for the small mistake committed by her overjealous junior colleague.

This can be considered as an incident of 'Communication Gap.'

Communication gap that arised between the two employees was a result of 'semantic block.'Susan emphasized more on 'collecting resumes' from the aspiring candiates than 'on handing over to whom' assuming that Ron would automaticallyhandover the resumes to her because she has given the directive. While Ron was more enthusiastic in pleasing his HR Manager than listening the directive properly (the hidden message of handing over to her when she didn't specify any other person's name).

However, rather than the maganimity of the incident, personalization of the incident through the 'my-woman-glasses' by Ron and 'Iam-very great-glasses' by Susan erupted the situation and caused difference between them.

The situation could be brought to normal level through arbitration and adjudication by their immediate boss.

Anonymous said...

It is more of an emotional one. Something is bugging both Susan and Ron internally

Rajesh said...

A classic example of emotions playing a major role in deciding professional relationship.
I appreciate above mentioned views, however, to certain extent I agree with what Prashant said.. I firmly believe it’s neither a conflict nor a matter of miscommunication, while writing I’d explore following questions:
• Was there anything hidden between these two personalities?
• Did the real issues come up or anything still hidden between them.
• Who was wrong?
Wherever humans are involved emotions are bound to play a role hence in a professional environment also often people of opposite sex develop a mutual admiration or a soft corner, & that’s what happened with Ron & Susan.
Susan being introvert & conscious about her professional image could not “acknowledge” her emotions on other hand in a subconscious zeal Ron kept trying to impress Susan which resulted in to such an outburst. Often people like Susan (no gender bias) take a moralistic stand while thinking about inclining towards some one in professional set up.
Such hidden issues will never come up in open. I’m against judging who was right or wrong, often we live in gray area, and however, we try to things and black and white.
Under such circumstances it important to acknowledge emotions and giving them right/productive direction.

rajesh said...

A classic example of emotions playing a major role in deciding professional relationship.
I appreciate above mentioned views, however, to certain extent I agree with what Prashant said.. I firmly believe it’s neither a conflict nor a matter of miscommunication, while writing I’d explore following questions:
• Was there anything hidden between these two personalities?
• Did the real issues come up or anything still hidden between them.
• Who was wrong?
Wherever humans are involved emotions are bound to play a role hence in a professional environment also often people of opposite sex develop a mutual admiration or a soft corner, & that’s what happened with Ron & Susan.
Susan being introvert & conscious about her professional image could not “acknowledge” her emotions on other hand in a subconscious zeal Ron kept trying to impress Susan which resulted in to such an outburst. Often people like Susan (no gender bias) take a moralistic stand while thinking about inclining towards some one in professional set up.
Such hidden issues will never come up in open. I’m against judging who was right or wrong, often we live in gray area, and however, we try to things and black and white.
Under such circumstances it important to acknowledge emotions and giving them right/productive direction.

Naveen said...

It looks both are liking and loving with each other. But they are unable to express the same directly as they are in a professional ambience. This so-called conflict is the result of true and hidden unexpressed love brewing between Ron and Susan.

In this context, let me recall the quote of Oscar Wilde “Between men and women there is no friendship possible. There is passion, enmity, worship, love, but no friendship.”

Dinesh Kumar said...

There is something hidden between these personalities. Ron should have clearly communicated to Susan that he loved her. Then the matter would have been settled down and the conflict would have been averted. No woman will come out openly that she loves the other person. Ron really lacks proper understanding of a woman's heart. Susan is also concerned about her image in the organisation. She was not in a position to jeopardise her professional image just because she had affection towards Ron. Probably both can meet outside office and resolve the issue amicably. Otherwise other colleagues who are jealous might throw spanner in their relations thereby worsening the situation further.

Swetha said...

Susan was emotionally attracted with Ron internally and the same has been expressed in this way. But it was wrong on her part to raise petty issues as it damages her image in the heart of Ron who admired her right from the beginning.

Sesagiri Medimi said...

My self Sesagiri Medimi, Sister Nivedita College of Professional Studies, Hyderabad(A.P)

Generally people they have to give up something if they wish to make space for something new in lives. But from the above case study- one can not find any changes from Susan, a true professional who respect and good to people around her. But we can find changes in case of Ron. Ron, who is never socialized with anyone, an extrovert by nature started compromising and apologized. It shows his assertiveness towards Susan. But at the same time when he did not find the same response from Susan it lead him to emotional imbalance. The fault is with Ron because he should be aware of professionalism and he is bachelor no more.

The above problem aroused because of emotional imbalance in case of Ron.

Kirti said...

Ron was a sentimental fool as he failed to recognise that Susan played with his emotions. Susan made Ron a scapegoat.

laxmi swetha said...

In....
hierarchal structure,everyone make mistakes that doesn't means that she/he may wrong the only ego
( i am the boss)conflict


but,were as he did to complete the work soon ...n she is not allowing her


it doesn't matter taking small mistakes into mind


past doesnot come ,present is main,future we live anot not


so both have done mistakes ....it just ego conflict

Manish said...

Yes, it is a conflict situation. This conflict is mainly due to communication gap. It can not be said that who miscommunicated or who misunderstood. As it is said that no communciation is complete till feedback is received. In this case, it was only one way communication. There was no effort from either of the persons for checking the understanding of the other person.

This has nothing to do with their personalities or any other person. The issue is purely of communication i.e. being judgemental, bias or perceptions. Clarification can help.

Irfan said...

Any conflict can arise out of misunderstanding or miscommunication or due to ego problem. In this case study, emotions played havoc. Susan tried to silence Ron with her professional authority as she was instigated by her female colleagues. Having sensed the organisational politics, Ron should have stayed away from Susan.


The conflict is beyond communication.

Irfan

Ali said...

It is a case of failed hidden expressions between Susan and Ron. There are internal emotions resulted into sudden flare up by Susan.

Ron would have talked with her and ironed out the differences, if any.