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Sakmongkol ak 47

Saturday, 6 September 2008

Determinants of Performance

When formulating some form of affirmative policies, I hope the framers will remember this. Society’s performance will depend on:

  1. Quality leadership
  2. The material by which people are made of
  3. Their cultural inclinations.

The performance of a country, society, organisation depends on the quality of leadership. If this can be quantified, I would say around 5% of the organisation. For example, in a committee of around 30, only about 6 people are the ones working their butts out. If you are an UMNO division committee member, test it yourself. Therefore large sized committees mean nothing if they cannot perform.

Can the quality of people, i.e. the material by which they are made of be improved? In the first place, the material is made of physical and mental attributes. These are mostly inherited.

But it can be improved by nurture. Hence the culture factor of progress. The natural factor can be improved by better nutrition, better health and medical facilities, training. Our IQ which is fixed can be improved with good environment, education, acquiring knowledge, skills and in the inculcation of values and forming of new habits that fortify and support progress.

But the performance of a team will always depend on the good coach. Given the natural proclivities of people, their nuances and prejudices, it will depend on this slender number called a leader and leadership. That 5% which we spoke of. Its up to the leader to make the population give its best. Up to the coach to make his team give its best.

The leader must create organisational coherence( UMNO now in disarray), and that spirit of keenness and of intensity which are necessary for high performance. When people in leadership positions apply themselves to problems at hand with keenness and are committed to the whole community, then this leadership will have that moral strength to arouse people. That is leadership- to rally people to one’ cause.

When the 98 (assuming 70% of BN MPs) come back from Australia, Pak Lah should remove them. Why? Because we must develop a habit that as a people, we must see a problem through, together. Only by staying and facing whatever is coming, we solve it. When people cabut, I say this- this country can only depend on those who can leave anytime, but choose not to. I would rather have faith in them. Those who abscond, are useless. If they do this now, they can do the same Brutus thing to Pak Lah himself.

We come back again and again to the issue of leadership. One important factor in determining performance is morale. Morale too depends on leadership.

A troop with a low morale is bound to be defeated. Because a troop member does not know what he is fighting for. When a troop or a people is slovenly and disorderly and slothful, it is because of bad leadership. When a people has a strong leadership that keeps everybody perked up, things are on the go.

The framers of affirmative policies must remember this. The differences in performance between groups are a reflection of their differences in brain power and their organisational reflex. Can they voluntarily organise themselves into groups and apply their minds to solve problems on their own first? Have they got the capacity to organise themselves to harness education and knowledge to create a better life for themselves?.

One of the remarkable things Tocqueville noted when travelling through America during his time, was the spontaneity by which social groups voluntarily form themselves into associations and apply themselves to pursue something. This urge to organise I think come from inside.

This brings me to legislation. You can legislate whatever rights that you want. Article 153 and what not. But you cant legislate the urge to work and achieve. This urge and conviction must come from within a people that they must do so and want to give their best. That particular group must form that consciousness of wanting to be co-owners of the society we want to build.

Who ever and what ever we are, it is what we produce that defines who we are, not our race or religion. So do you think, by saying, you are a Muslim first and lawyer second, you are special?


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