Anatomic evolution in biology and behavioural evolution in corporate
The theory of 'use and disuse' is not limited to just anatomical adaptation, it goes beyond as it also involve the mind and the behaviour....
How the theory of ‘use and disuse’ of Lamarck is so relevant and appropriate to the modern corporate? Certainly, the above ‘theory’ is very much relevant and meaningful to many corporate these days. The interesting aspect is that the theory of ‘use and disuse’ holds more relevance to the behavioural and intellectual evolution of human life (corporate employees) than the anatomical/organ evolution seen in many animals in nature.
The theory of use and disuse simply states that the constant & continuous use and need for the continuous use of any organs in future only would contribute to the growth, evolution and further development of any organs and the finest example being the long neck of a giraffe. There are several examples we can cite from nature as to prove or to understand how the theory of use and disuse is appropriate and valid.
If we study the anatomy of the behaviour of corporate employees, we can learn that the knowledge and the skills acquired by most employees in the organizations are highly unidirectional, uni-polar and non dichotomous. If we further study the key behavioural element/trait displayed by the corporate employees, we can learn that they always display the traits of either a prey or a predator.
If we study the anatomy of the behaviour of corporate employees from the performance/management point of view, the corporate employees always speak the language of result/target and numbers only. In every action, they would define/mix business approach & business meaning and always they apply the theory of investment vs. returns. Time, process, result etc… are the very dear language always they use.
To survive in corporate, they always apply the theory of use and disuse and develop traits that are extremely essential for survival in the organization. Because of the above, they evolve out either as perfect ‘predator’ or perfect ‘prey’. Similarly, from knowledge point of view, they become too good in a particular job and develop high level of competency, skill and interest only in an area of profit or survival. Outside the sphere, they score zero. Even in acquiring knowledge, they want to ensure either some survival value or profit otherwise they avoid such knowledge acquisition.
All the management learning and training provided to the employees by the organization shall be in the in the space of a ‘predator’ or a ‘prey’ and anything beyond the space they would not appreciate or would see meaningful or worthwhile. Since they are using a particular style and believe that only such particular style alone is required, they develop only that particular style. Anything outside the space would fall into disuse category and become vestigial.
A manager knows only to manage either the task or people. A factory worker knows only to do the defined job and nothing else. Unfortunately most employees also believe that becoming perfectionist in the given job only ensure success to them. This approach will be very counterproductive as it offers only one dimensional growth or evolution.
The theory of evolution of ‘use and disuse’ is not mere subject that hypothesize how the anatomy of species differentiation or diverse species formation had occurred, but it also describe the formation of different ‘behavioural species’ within the same biological species.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Dr S Ranganathan, Director, ClinRise Derma Pvt., Ltd., Chennai