Get stuck or get lost, marketing managers?


What one can find in a garden? The question may sound silly, but one needs to introspect whether any one has ever asked such question. One can certainly find many diversely coloured flowers, in different size and shape and with diverse fragrances etc. What message does the floral diversity in the garden convey to the corporate?

A beautiful and richly coloured flower seldom has great fragrance and richly fragrant flower does not have rich colour or great petal beauty. All the three dimensions viz., colour, petal diversity and fragrance rarely co-exist in any single flower. That is the irony of nature. Look at jasmine or champa flower, they carry exuberant fragrance but are not richly coloured and nor do they have petals beautifully architectured or organized.

When one flower uses fragrance as its USP (Unique Selling Preposition), others use either colour or unique petal armamentarium as its USP. Size of the flower does have its role. It seems plants have absolutely understood the great ‘management secret’ that a common USP among all plants will never work in their business (pollination). Business success requires ‘uniqueness’ and the uniqueness should be positioned perfectly and one should never attempt to mimic the USP of others for success.

Most FMCG’s (Fast Moving Consumer Good’s Companies) in general try to mimic the USP’s of the successful brands of many other companies in the market place. If an amateur tries to mimic an athlete, never the amateur can become an athlete. To become an athlete, one needs to practice with commitment. This truth, the FMCG companies are yet to learn but plants in the garden are always there to teach them.

The marketing and R&D ‘stuffs’ in most corporate, knows only to pick up popular products from the market, do reverse engineering, copy and then market. All they know about the USP is nothing but perfect mimicking of the successful brands.

Look at the nature. The diversity of the plant community will tell us that success lies in differentiation and not in mimicking. They show their differentiation and distinction and become successful. Even the flowers of the same plant differ slightly in different geographic localities. The Mendelian law of ‘segregation’ and ‘independent assortment’ speak only about the creation and management of USP’s.

They follow the art of co-existence and not the art of elimination and that is why they are always ‘graceful’ in nature.

Another important message the colour, petal diversity and fragrances present among different flowers convey is that ‘perfect’ is always ‘imperfect’. All the above three dimensions are generally not present in any single plant. Diversely coloured flowers lack great smell or the flowers that have great fragrance are not richly coloured. The state of perfect ness should be interpreted not from the point of view of their ‘co-existence’ in single entity, but how they lead one to become successful even if only one of the three dimensions alone exist.

Ref: Management Book ? Jungle wisdom for corporate management ? lessons from university of nature by Swami Sukhabodhananda and Dr S Ranganathan

Articles by S. Ranganathan, Dr.

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