Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Does appreciation increase competition?

I shared my views on the topic that too much of the appreciation may not prove to be good for the children. My colleagues gave me the feedback about what they thought and many of them were not quite in agreement with me. But when we discussed the topic further not in context of the children and extended it to the elders also, many more things came to light. It was found that these are not the children only who are affected by it but even the adults . During the discussion we were forced to go an extreme where we felt as appreciation does no good to anyone. I would like to share a few examples here. At home or in school or in any other organization we come across many situations where a person or a group is appreciated for something that deserves appreciation.There seems to be nothing wrong with that. But look at the reaction of the other people in the family or the organization, how do they feel? We all are supposed to do our job sincerely and many do it sincerely, but only a few of them are appreciated and awarded, what happens to others who might have been doing equally well. The most important question to be asked is, why should somebody be appreciate or awarded? The simple answer would be to encourage and motivate this person to do better in future and also let others also feel that if they do the same they too will  be appreciated or awarded. I raise another question here. Should people do good work for the sake of getting appreciation? Before this appreciation they were doing all the work without expecting anything in return but once they have been awarded or appreciated will they not have the expectation of the same for anything they do in future? One of my friends told me that once he was chosen to be the most honest person in the organization in which he was working and he asked a simple question,whether the other people were not honest in the organization and he was the only one? His question was very genuine because others who were equally honest felt let down and thought as they have been labelled as being dishonest. Making one feel happy might cause problem for others but that does not mean the good work should not be recognized. For all this a different way will have to be explored which is not subjective but objective in nature and everyone understands it very well. Many people say and I too believe that in an organisation we should have the co-operation. The awards and so called appreciation are the hindrance to the concept of the co-operation. Co-operation will make this world better for everyone and competition will make the people drift away from each other. The competition takes us to the illusion and the cooperation to the real and happy situation. Look at what has happened to the spirit of the games and sports. People always felt that games and sports will improve the discipline and the cooperation among the people but the result is in front of all for us to see. The competition has added to all the ills and the problem which nobody had thought of. The game of cricket is the burning example for all of us. The other games are not left untouched from this. The hockey team which has declined to accept certain amount which they consider much less than the amount given to the cricketers. Why did it happen, because the cricket team was appreciated more than the hockey team? I do not know whether more appreciation to the cricket has done any good or not but this has definitely done some wrong to the hockey team. Now take the example from home or the school. A group of teachers did one activity and the same was appreciated by the people. The other teachers would try to do better than this, whether possible or not, needed or not needed and if by chance they are not appreciated as the other group was,there evolved problems. In some case they may be not be able to do anything in future. Sometimes many people work for the sake of appreciation only which is not good. The work should be done because this is supposed to be done that way. There can be many examples where the appreciation has done more of harm than benefit to the family or the organization. So what our children and people should understand is that, appreciation should not be taken as the output of the work done by us but something which you got in bonus. The people should not work for the bonus but the main task should be considered the most important. Till we keep getting bonus it is all right but the day the bonus is not given there are problems so why to make people habitual of that. Take another example when a child had done his homework and the mother said well done and the other day the child did the same but did not get the appreciation then he feels bad. The child should do his homework and by doing that he has done nothing extraordinary and we should teach him and learn the same that everything should not be done for award but for self happiness and in the process if others are also happy that will be great irrespective of whether we are appreciated or not. The self satisfaction and performing a task should be the main source of happiness and this is what our saints have been teaching us. The happiness of our inner soul is the most important than external happiness. Those who have tried to seek it in the outside world landed in the difficult situation and others were happy. We must learn to work for the purpose of helping others without expecting anything in return. If we are able to do so then most of the problems will get solved automatically. 

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