Monkey Business – Do most of us really understand what we do?

Author unknown

One reason why companies don’t perform as expected is when the management do not understand what they are doing. Often times, when a junior employee asks a question like “why are we letting credit control to the hands of customer service personnel” (employees who attend to customers at the customer service counters), the top managers or executives would say something like “that’s the way things always been around here”. In other words that’s the way we control customer credit here. I will try to tell a compelling story, that will explain how this mentality is engraved into the minds of executives.

Anyways, the story begins something like this ….

“Start with a cage containing five monkeys. Inside the cage, hang a banana on a string and place a set of stairs under it.

Before long, a monkey will go to the stairs and start to climb towards the banana.

As soon as he touches the stairs, spray all of the monkeys with cold water.

After a while, another monkey makes an attempt with the same result; all the monkeys are sprayed with cold water.

Pretty soon, when another monkey tries to climb the stairs, the other monkeys will try to prevent it. Now, turn off the cold water. Remove one monkey from the cage and replace it with a new one. The new monkey sees the banana and wants to climb the stairs.

To his surprise and horror, all of the other monkeys attack him.

After another attempt and attack, he knows that if he tries to climb the stairs, he will be assaulted. Next, remove another of the original five monkeys and replace it with a new one. The newcomer goes to the stairs and is attacked. The previous newcomer takes part in the punishment with enthusiasm.

Again, replace a third original monkey with a new one. The new one makes it to the stairs and is attacked as well.

Two of the four monkeys that beat him have no idea why they were not permitted to climb the stairs, or why they are participating in the beating of the newest monkey.

After replacing the fourth and fifth original monkeys, all the monkeys that have been sprayed with cold water have been replaced. Nevertheless, no monkey ever again approaches the stairs.

Why not?

Because as far as they know that’s the way it’s always been around here.

“that’s the way it’s always been around here” can mean

1. That’s our norm, no one can change it, and it should not be attempted.

2. That’s the only way we know how to do it

3. That’s the only way we have been exposed to do it, we never thought of any other possibility

I leave the readers to continue the list of meanings of the above phrase. Please comment …


6 ޚިޔާލުތައް (+add yours?)

  1. DM
    މާރިޗު 04, 2010 @ 21:50:09

    amazing thoughts, i think most of maldivians suit the monkey as describe in the article. Will never let someone succeed but keen to get rid of them all. damn suckers


  2. MTCC ge dharieh
    މާރިޗު 04, 2010 @ 10:48:58

    In my opinion, there are many “monkeys” in this company. Especially those haven’t done almost any constructive work in the company and surprisingly enough claiming the opposite as soon as they come to know there will be a major restructuring in the company by crying and begging the new acting MD hoping that he would be stupefied. I call upon the new acting MD to evaluate them as per the procedure and not to fall in to someone’s recommendation as I doubt there will be fairness among them. Also in this critical period of time, I humbly request not to make this company a guinea pig by giving the labeled failures the opportunity to aggravate it further. Thank you.


  3. bafaya
    މާރިޗު 03, 2010 @ 20:50:09

    New structure revealed…….
    sources within blog committee doing monkey business revealed some new names for the proposed org.structure today.
    Mr. Naseem from IS will be the new director HR. His associate Mr. Latheef would compete Mrs Sewsang Hue for the director Business Development.


  4. haha
    މާރިޗު 02, 2010 @ 21:30:16

    Raappe, Leela, MH, Fazu and M Amira, the 5 monkeys from the Finance Depts Cage. Unlike in the story there was no cold water to be sprayed, but as expected they attack among themselves and finally the little monkey called Leela was finally removed from the cage. Then comes the other monkey, the Cheer Leader, Suneeza. But to everyone surprise the cycle never continues and stops from there and they seems to be living happily. The actual reason still remains as a mystery. Well, let see whats happens, once the new structure comes into effect, bringing in more new monkeys like Huzeyma and Nazima and the ousted monkey Leela comes back to this cage. Perhaps they need a bigger cage. Maybe we will be witness the Darwin’s Theory about evolution before our own eyes … ” Natural selection acts only by taking advantage of slight successive variations; she can never take a great and sudden leap, but must advance by short and sure, though slow steps …. “


  5. koimalaa
    މާރިޗު 02, 2010 @ 10:40:40

    I need volunteers to test this experiment. We do not have monkeys around here, but a can accept anyone who can demonstrate the braveness of a monkey.


    • zoo
      މާރިޗު 02, 2010 @ 21:39:48

      Well no monkeys ? i don’t believe that. We will only know that once we bring in a bunch of bananas. Even now some have noticed monkeys like Suzan, Faarig, Latheef, Shaheed, Solih, Hamid, Abidha and Thasleem have been fighting for their bunch of bananas. Don’t we have here anything other than monkey in this Company ?


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