Monday, January 31, 2011

Newton’s third law

Recently I have been thinking about the much quoted third law – ‘every action has an equivalent and opposite reaction’. I was wondering how much this law of physics is applicable in the corporate world.

After so much of contemplation, I feel that it is applicable every bit; however, Newton has not mentioned about inaction or not acting at right time. In my experience, inaction also has a reaction but the magnitude is just not same as the magnitude of inaction. It becomes multifold!!! It affects not only the person not acted / not acted on time, but also everyone associated with him / her. Being indecisive is a costly affair in corporate world – for that matter, in any walk of life.

I learnt this lesson from someone’s mistake. This person could have taken a decision in August, but did not take a decision till October and finally the decision was thrust on him in November by someone else. Ultimately, the entire unit suffered in November thru January. In November again, this person was given a chance to decide on something else, but again there was inaction!!!

A corollary to this lesson is, if you think the inaction is wrong, and you can take action at your level, you should take action. Basically, do what you believe is right. If not these indecisiveness and inactions of other people will haunt you. I should have acted in August though the other person did not act; because of this, I lost a few weekends and valuable Six Sigma Master Black Belt classes!!! Life is too costly to be lost like this!!!