Truth about super performers – HR message from epiphytes
Epiphytes are a group of plants that grows on other plants but are not parasites They use the host plant only for hold on or as substrate to grow and...
Epiphytes are a group of plants that grows on other plants but are not parasites. They use the host plant only for hold on or as substrate to grow and for water and other requirements they trap directly from the atmosphere or from dead tissues of the host.
The epiphyte plants in general will have very broad leaves than the host plant. Hence, the presence of epiphytes in any given habitat can be seen easily from a distance.
The epiphytes communicate an important management message to the HR function across the globe. Epiphytes, by definition are a group of ‘dependent’ plants. They lean on the host plant and only then they can grow. Whenever a plant, that prefers to grow beneath other plant will likely get only less sunlight. If the epiphytes have small leaves, trapping sunlight become impossible. Hence they have broad leaves.
In corporate also, we can find several ‘epiphytes’. They always lean on the bosses or others and only then they can perform. The performances of these people are always appears better than those who are relatively ‘independent’. The independent performers have to ‘perform’ and also have to ‘ensure their security’.
The ‘epiphyte’ people in the corporate believe that their security is already assured and hence can perform freely.
It is like the non epiphyte plants that grow in direct sunlight always will have small leaves but the epiphyte plants on the other hand, will have very broad leaves. The corporate leadership should never get lost in such comparison.
In certain function, the approach of encouraging the culture of ‘epiphyte-ism’ is inevitable. In R&D, the above culture is required otherwise the people in R&D might do research without any customer connect. While in other function, the culture of ‘epiphyte-ism’ is dangerous. In marketing, sales etc., the corporate should never allow people to be like ‘epiphytes’. They have to be independent and independently capable.
The broad leaves of epiphytes are only due to their limitation as they live under shade. Hence, the broad leaves of epiphytes should be read carefully.
If the epiphytes are grown in direct sunlight, the same plant in all probability will not able to grow with broad leaves or sometime may not even grow. The corporate needs to understand the inner message and accordingly must lead the people.
Understand the real meaning of ‘narrow’ leaves and ‘broad’ leaves in the context of ‘dependence versus independence’.
Since the ‘epiphyte’ people are liked and supported by the bosses and they have regular interactions with them, it is possible that the bosses might rate these people above others who do not seek support of the boss and will not engage in updating the boss about all trivial and diagonal matters like how the ‘epiphyte people do’.
Nature offers enormous management wisdom to the corporate and hence the modern corporate needs to be sensitive to learn and apply them in the corporate governance.