Sunday, November 29, 2020
Editorial

Incompetent system

We are today living in a state and society where justice is not done to those who deserve it and the gifts of promotions or positions are showered on those who do not deserve it. In our State, people thrive on what they are not entitled to. Conscienceless are the souls who receive anything without being fit for it. Indeed it is better not to have what one deserves than to have what one does not deserve. Here lies the dignity of one’s thinking. But this is not happening in our part of the world. We are all aware and have experienced that when the talented and the competent are ignored and deprived of its right place, the entire system gets off the rails with no chance to come back on the track. What is happening in our State is that people are being promoted from the levels of excellence to the levels of incompetence and in the process become useless. In our State, the public servants are doing a bad job today because they were rewarded for doing a good job at a lower level yesterday. That is just the way in systems where lateral promotions do not exist. We only go vertical in our promotional hierarchy, never thinking for a moment that a person who is so good at what he or she does should be rewarded monetarily, by perks and by empowerment, but not necessarily by promotion. We live and work in a society where most of us are doing the wrong things primarily due to the wrong approach and miscalculations of the mechanism. What we have failed to understand is that everybody is not a leader nor is everyone fond of doing administrative supervision of thirty people. But, he was so good at level five when we pitch-forked him into level six but now he is out of his depth and the organization/department has to pay the price without realizing that the system should change! The point here is that someone who is a good teacher may not be fit for being a principal; one who is a competent clerk in an organization may be incapable of being its manager and one who can take care of a patient may be unable to take care of the department because the nature of job changes with the change in positions. In fact it is now time for us to rectify the system and do what is genuine for running the show effectively. Let us realize that the upward reward is often detrimental to efficiency and the flaw lies in the public and the private sector that do not acknowledge their incompetence in matters of promotions and up-gradations. Long back Shakespeare said somewhere in one of his famous plays Othello, “…it is the curse of service where the up-gradation goes by the letters of recommendations.” And it is a matter of great anguish that this is very much happening in our society even today. A general psyche is that everyone wants to be elevated to the higher and higher pedestal in life mainly because one wants to earn more and win for oneself the advantages that come with the designation. But what if we could make the same lifestyle for ourselves by being provided with incentives that would keep us doing what we are the best at? A writer does not become the editor; the lawyer does not become a judge; the field man does not stuck behind an office and the player does not become an official. Would that not create more universal competence, less frustration and give the job satisfaction a deeper relevance? A salesperson whose forte lies in packaging the merchandise is promoted to the post of a manager and finds him swimming in paperwork. He has more money, a better remuneration but he’s a lousy administrator. So, he ends up being miserable and unproductive. He’s a lousy boss, he is miserable, his subordinates are miserable and the company has lost a whole dimension to its success. It is happening around us most often. The whole problem is the fascination we have with commanding appointments and the chasm between the top bracket and the rest. This cult has to be discouraged instead of being boosted at the cost of a society already in despair.

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