Sink or Sync?
Was it just a fancy alliteration to create a buzz, or was there something more to it when we organizers of KMA put forth the topic, ‘Sink or Sync with the Burning Platform’—for the third category meant for working professionals to show their articulation skills? Burning Platform is the management jargon born out of a catastrophic event which took place in 1988, when an oil rig near Scotland was ablaze; when the people on it were just left with the choice of (a) remaining on the rig with the surety of embracing death, or (b) jumping off it with the probability of surviving. While conducting interventions on change management, we discovered that the term is grossly misunderstood. Managers, at times, use it to denote just the situations where decisions are to be taken during firefighting; or when work needs to be done fast by creating a ‘sense of urgency’: simply as a ‘do or die’ situation! But the implications are more profound than the deep sea…
When faced with challenges at work, some people are persistent enough to take initiative under conditions of risk and uncertainty, and make it work with patience without getting disturbed, and with perseverance which showcases their determination to succeed. Their personalities have the inbuilt 3P’s—the wonderful combination needed to drive change. They are courageous to come out of their comfort zone to find sustainable solutions, by departing from their distressed status quo (what is); and move towards the desired outcome (what could be).
I had the good fortune of meeting a visionary recently, who impressed me immensely. I would like to cite the example of Dr. Lalit K. Panwar, former IAS and Ex-Secretary, Govt. of India who retired a couple of years back, but was too energetic to rest. He was called back by the then Hon’ble Chief Minister of Rajasthan and had been appointed as first Vice Chancellor of Rajasthan ILD Skills University to set up the ecosystem and promote excellence in Skill Education in an integrated and holistic manner—a daunting vision to fulfill. The zeal to drive the change, the desire to make the youth of Rajasthan skilled and employable, to integrate and support institutes with a proactive approach, to collaborate with industries, to emerge as the foremost institution for skills at national and international level…the leader counters all inertia and zooms ahead with 100% commitment to realize the change objectives, motivating so many others in the process. And the icing on the cake is that he has been giving exemplary measurable results in the journey so far, and will attain the benchmark in future too.
So, we all have encountered deadlocks or drying lakes, aka challenges, at our workplaces. And I believe that if there is a lock, it has been manufactured with a key too. Let us find what exceptional, ‘out-of-box’ solutions did we or others came up with, in organizations? Let us share it with others to Sustain the Excellent (category III) at the platform provided by Kumar Memorial Awards for Public Speaking on March 5th this year.
–Rajan Arora, Managing Director, 3T (Triumph Through Training Pvt. Ltd.)