Times of India has a daily column called The Speaking Tree. This column publishes a philosophical or spiritual article everyday. The quality of the articles is very good and most of them are quite illuminating. In fact select past articles have been published in form of books. Today’s article was titled Mango as spiritual guide. Quoting from the article with a few minor changes,
Based on the appearances and degrees of ripening, the mangoes can be categorised as follows: 1) those not ripe but appear ripe; 2) those ripe but appear not ripe; 3) those unripe and appear unripe; and 4) those ripe and appear ripe.
In terms of preference, obviously the kind of mango we must choose is the one belonging to the last category, as it is ready to be served and there is no risk of waste involved. The second preference should be given to, in my opinion, the second last. Because it does not deceive you, you can just discard it right away or wait for it to ripen. Then the next in order of selection should be the one mentioned in number two. It involves some chances of waste but at least you can use it after some testing before cutting to see if it is really ripe. The one you must avoid is the first category of mangoes.
Choice of the mangoes in any case is not a big deal and much insignificant, in comparison to the selection of people.
The article then talks about choosing a spiritual friend. Instead, I would concentrate on applying this to a mundane thing like recruitment.
While recruiting, ripeness would refer to knowledge and skills and appearance would refer to presentation. Let us see how the categories of the mango apply to categories of people. The people categories will be as follows
- Those who are not knowledgeable, but pretend to be knowledgeable
- Those who are knowledgeable but do not appear knowledgeable
- Those who are not knowledgeable and do not pretend to be knowledgeable
- Those who are are knowledgeable and demonstrate the knowledge
Similar to mangoes, the people in the fourth category are most desirable. They can be immediately, or with very little training, be put on the job. The third category of people are honest, but not fit for the job at all. They can be immediately rejected, or could be taken in as trainees. The second kind of people could easily lose the job opportunity because they do not appear knowledgeable. They stand the chance only if the recruiter makes an efforts to discover the knowledge hidden deep within the candidate.
The first kind of candidates are most dangerous. They appear as good as the fourth category people and in the end, when we discover that they do not have all the required skills and knowledge, all the investments made on them is wasted.
Lessons for the recruiters: Learn to judge the level of skills and knowledge without being stuck at the appearance or the facade.
Lessons for the candidates: Make sure you can demonstrate the inherent value that you bring to the job.
Let’s be open to learning from all sources, including mangoes.