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January 1 2011

It was a long before that the two hobbyist balloonists went into their balloon for excursion. In a while they faced a blow of wind that dislodged their direction and their balloon picked up unexpectedly got out of control.

In a few minutes time they got in a bit of uncertainty. In this situation of chaos the first balloonist asked the second, “Can you tell me where we are?”

The second balloonist saw up, down, right and left and answered that “WE ARE IN A BALLOON”.

After a little while they got their direction and went back to launching point courtesy to another balloon [balloonist] traveling their way.

When the first balloonist met that another balloonist on ground he stated about the second that he must be a manager. Another balloonist inquired about the reason with surprise.

He stated that he took sufficient time to answer, second he answered perfectly correct and third his answer was perfectly useless.

This short story is really meaningful. Even I have seen many people carrying WE ARE IN A BALLOON explanation for business problems even to the extent of our macroeconomic managers.

In management the question “where we are?” is really important. It is the core of GAP Analysis whereby we want to see where we want to go and how long we have to travel from the point where we are.

Sometimes managers don’t try to evaluate their current standings rather they merely try knowing the basic generics of the current standings. I can say that in our corporate culture descriptive assessment is everything. We sometimes behave highly ignorant of the real ask of business questions.

Even business research is developing in our corporate culture as a formality. We only follow the process of research or research methodology but when it comes to extract real facts, we ignore the stuff in our own biases or incompetence.

The above myth explains us that even a correct answer in generic sense can be useless. We are actually seeking for answers that can produce incremental effects to our management rather than merely correct ones.

If your manager responds that we are not getting business due to recession in market then it is merely a right answer. Actually the important part of this answer must be that how we can explore new and innovative business opportunities in this time of recession.

The point of concern for business is not that we are in a balloon but where exactly this balloon is. We need to know the point that business herself or within is nothing. It is actually the context of market & the strategy to win the market that matters.

The above myth also signifies the importance of market analysis because sometimes few managers feel themselves comfortable if their business is surviving rather they have to see their comparative position in the market. May be they are not as profitable as the market. In this regard sometimes they have to put a new strategy in place and sometimes they have to rectify their ongoing strategy even if they are going in positive numbers.

The bottom line is that if any correct answer pushes you stop thinking & doing further; it means that it is really a wrong statement being a manager. We need to focus on true dimension of business questions rather than giving correct useless answers. I hope that those who are working with me as managers must hear the buzz that lost in balloon theory is not acceptable!!!!!


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Mr. Omer

Mr. Omer [1982 born] started  his professional career as a commercial / investment banker after achieving Gold Medal in Finance at master level from University of Karachi in 2006.

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