Responsibility Before Authority

Strange are the ways of the world: saddle the newborn with responsibility the moment he or she is born! Some believe the process begins while the baby is in the mother’s womb. The mother anxiously awaits the exhilarating experience she will shortly be enjoying. The father looks ahead to establishing his own family. Rest all the near and dear ones rejoice in their very own style and wait for the time when the baby enters this world.

You might be questioning what insane mind would impose responsibility on a just-born child. Take a closer look and see; is it not a fact that each movement of the infant brings cheer to the whole family? The infant’s cries cause concern and smiles bring cheer on everyone’s face! The parents start preparations for the school, the college, future career and every other aspect as he/she gets the responsibility to develop up as an immensely respected Gentleman or Woman. The family wishes this little bundle of joy to receive all the treasures of the world and every possible authority. No parents ever want their offspring to grow into a derelict, a liability worth nothing.

At every step of advancement, this child learns how to conduct himself/herself. His/her responsibilities include passing out with flying colors. Failure in class brings admonition because of the child’s irresponsible conduct, nothing else. Paying attention to studies and behaving well in all surroundings was one of the responsibilities if my memory serves me right!

Before we realize, the time comes to earn money. Starting a business or to enter an already running family business is one of the options a few lucky ones avail of, without much pain and competition. Others have to compete for the job and prove their responsible disposition before the employer to land the job. Once again, the meritorious students with higher levels of education earn better paying and more responsible jobs but those in the mediocre range rest content with whatever comes their way. Depending upon the position you must accept applicable rules, regulations, and responsibilities before taking on any authority.

Even if you were one of the fortunate ones, born with a golden ladle in your mouth, no one in his/her sane mind would give you any authority without a ton of responsibilities. Even if you run a one-man show making handicrafts to sell to tourists, responsibility continues to be the determining factor of survival. You must make sure your product is presentable, priced right and justifies value in the eyes of the prospective customer. Lack of responsibility means disaster.

Let us examine a different scenario where you were born in a super-rich family. You attended the finest university and obtained the highest possible education to get the coveted position of C.E.O. in an MNC. You can very well argue that all the trouble you underwent this far has now given you immeasurable authority. Let us not forget, closing your eyes to the inherent responsibilities will bring destroy the business within no time. Those directly under your charge will be the first ones to jump the gun when they fail to elicit much-deserved respect. Your management team is there to help you, guide, and to protect you in times of challenging situations. They look up to you for guidance but you must remember that they are the Executors, not you. You may be the captain of the ship but the sailors do most of the hard work. Their job profile includes maintenance, charting the course, navigation, communication, inventory, and supplies management as well as the night vigil on the deck while you snore in your luxury cabin.

Comparing the above scenario to the general household, you might proclaim your authority as the head of the family. Pause and check the list of family demands and needs that you must meet on a regular basis. Under the overpowering burden of responsibility, your authority will be a silent spectator, nothing else!

Oh, you are an ordinary fellow with a wide circle of friends that give you utmost respect because you are the most intelligent! Guess what; even there you hold much less authority and a lot more responsibility. The day you refused to adjust with your friends, whether helping someone move or assist another one of them with a small bridge loan to tide over a financial crisis, you will see your authority evaporate same as early morning fog that dissipates with the first rays of the sun.

A simple change can earn you and your loved ones much more joy. You must realize the importance of responsibilities before basking in the blinding glare of authority. Know the Difference See the Light, Act with Courage!





Bharat Mathur
Bharat Mathur
WHERE goal setting and systematically achieving each one of them has been the ‘Mantra’, where earning trust by delivering value has been an uncompromising principle and where deeply impactful experiences have made an indelible impression to look directly into the eyes of toughest problems and tackling them head-on has been a major cementing glue in the foundation, Bharat Mathur fits the bill, hands down! Creating value for others, out of the challenges his career in the “C” Suite kept throwing at him left, right and center, Bharat now finds solace in being a ‘Guide by Your Side’ rather than a ‘Sage on the Stage with An Eye on What You Buy’! Past 4 decades of Bharat’s life have been no less eventful than that of anyone else in similar circumstances. However, the way he lived from one challenge to another and stayed focused on his goal is clearly visible as much in his Coaching as in his #1 Best Seller Book: “you Are YOU-nique: Realize Your True Worth”! His next book project tackles ‘Internet of things’ (IoT) from the viewpoint of a layman and helps understand this fast-approaching revolution in simple, easy-to-understand language with live examples: “SMART PHONE + I o T = INCOMPARABLE OPPORTUNITIES” Nurturing a number of successful businesses, mentoring a lot more towards astronomical growth and helping them identify and eradicate trouble spots, Bharat has rightfully earned the nickname: ‘Achiever’ Send him Bouquets or Brickbats, Bharat loves it all!

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  1. In a perfect world that is all true. Unfortunately we don’t live in a perfect world and far too many parents decline to accept the hard parts of being a parent. They don’t want to see their kids disappointed, or experience failure, or be unhappy.

    So, the losing team gets a “participation trophy”. The child gets a clown and pony rides at his/her birthday party. They get an allowance, but have to do nothing to earn it. They learn that they don’t have to take responsibility for anything and that whatever they desire is an entitlement that should come their way.

    Thus we have a generation or two that have no experience in taking responsibility, can not handle failure or disappointment, and think that government (or someone) should provide whatever they desire.

    • Dear Ken,

      While I appreciate your valuable time and patience in reading my post, it hurts to see a person of your stature miss out on the main message:

      “A simple change can earn you and your loved ones much more joy. You must realize the importance of responsibilities before basking in the blinding glare of authority.

      Know the Difference, See the Light, Act with Courage!”

      What you have portrayed is nothing but a small segment of our society that neither you nor me can ever change without its own active participation.

      Having said that, I must also point out that true leadership lies in knowing one’s obligations and meeting them to the best of capability. With this principle in mind, I wouldn’t shed a tear on the ones you have highlighted. There’s still a whole wide world full of aspirants looking up to a better future. We, in our wisdom, have an obligation to offer them guidance. I look at the glass half-full while, unfortunately, your observation points towards the half-empty glass.

      I will let you choose your responsibilities!

      With Warm Regards

      • Bharat: We could debate the % of society that I categorize for long periods of time without reaching a provable answer. I would hope you right, though that isn’t what I see all around us.

        As to the glass, I’ve always seen it as full. Half full of one substance and half full of another. The half that you see as empty is full of air is it not?

        • Dear Ken,

          If we decide to indulge in an argumentative exchange, believe me there would be no end to the discussion until one of us looses cool. I have no such intentions as I am definitely not the one who looks at “the empty glass as full of air.”

          In keeping with decorum of this immensely powerful medium, and also respecting the high esteem that I hold you in, I would much humbly desist from continuation of negative exchange.

          I do not believe in arguing for the sake of the argument as I see you deviate from the gist of my message, Sir!

          I know when enough is enough and no one can make me change that.

          BTW: I only see POSITIVITY all around me and have no idea how you could see otherwise.

          Thank You and Warm Regards!