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Business opinions

a pebble

a pebble - a pebble
dug out pool hand 050319 - a pebble

A pebble tossed into a pond creates ripples. A small deed has the same effect by the tiny ripples that reverberate and swell into bigger, wider circles. The slightest pressure can topple a series of unsecured bricks in a domino pattern. Over a period of time, a hairline fissure or flaw widens into a yawning chasm with movement underneath it.

dug out pool hand 050319 - a pebble

These metaphors illustrate the possible effects of our actions.

When viewed from the objective perspective of time and distance, a perplexing jigsaw puzzle could finally make sense. An obscure image would slowly clarify and emerge and into the light.

As we arrive the crossroads of a career or deliberate the choice of a lifestyle, we are forced to select from diverse options. The dilemma of divergent directions.

In a quandary, the horizon may appear hazy. Perhaps the timing is off. To take a calculated risk, one weighs the available data and attempts to assess the odds.

Rational thinking is a major component of any decision. Whenever possible, we should balance objectivity with a dose of intuition or gut feel. The subconscious is an alternative source. It is a fountain of possibilities.

It may not be possible to predict the outcome or the future consequences if any decision. If we are cautious, we can make a calculated risk and hedge against probable obstacles. This would cushion or diffuse the final impact.

A developed sense of intuition may help resolves a problem. It could provide the hidden insights or leads that are valuable.

In Jungian parlance, we should tap into the collective unconscious for the answer. Listening to the inner voice would make all the difference.


In the normal course of one’s profession an individual has to make critical and painful decisions such as downsizing a department or retrenchment. Or it means the transfer and retraining of personnel in the re-engineering program. A boss would have to select people to retain or recycle when an interpersonal conflict arises or a big snafu happens.

Where doe one draw the line between what is good for the company or what will benefit only a chosen few?

The institution, without question, always takes precedence over everything else. Business over personal interest. What is good for the company prevails.

In the technologically progressive company, at tug-of-war happens. Human resources versus electronic machines. On the basis of standards of efficiency, the use of automation has already effectively reduced the number of employees and manpower hours. Expenses could be further minimized. Profit margins could be increased.

Our concern is the human factor. How does the individual fit into the entire scheme, the corporate strategy? In the spirit of modernization, technological advancement and re-engineering, will the individual eventually be replaced by a robot or computer? Will he be sacrificed in the race?

A drastic cut in manpower would result in job displacement – underemployment and unemployment. Many lives, the employees and their extended families, would be adversely affected.

While business people are primarily concerned with attaining a healthy bottom line and profits, there are other meaningful factors. One should consider the intangibles such as the human dimension, social responsibility, and environment.

In the ideal balance sheet, the bottom line should include: Net Profit plus Values.


Maria Victoria Rufino is an artist, writer and businesswoman. She is president and executive producer of Maverick Productions.

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