Monday, May 25, 2009

Wanna rock the boat?

'Rock the boat'- heard of this expression? Used like 'He does not rock the boat. He goes with the flow.' Used in corporate settings like - 'He puts up with a lot of senior management bullshit. He just wants to hang on to his job. He does not rock the boat. Just bidding his time.'

An idle discussion with a friend gave a new perspective on 'rock the boat' recently.

My friend, who I consider as one of the most pragmatic, practical and philosophical persons I have ever known said something on the lines like this. "You job also sucks. I have a lot of good ideas. But, I also know that with all the things going on in my place of work, it just does not make sense to rock the boat. Let me stick it out here for a while. I am outta here after that."

"I do not want to rock the boat. I know that first of all I am in a leaky boat. Leak is getting bigger and bigger day by day. To make things worse, the boat is in a crocodile infested lake. The leak is so big that actually a crocodile's snoot is sticking through it and kissing my bottom. Luckily, the croc is not able to open its mouth and grab me. That's good. To make things even worse, wind gust is picking up and boat is rocking as such. When I am in all these predicaments at the same time, you think I will rock the boat? You must be kidding."

Wow! I thought. How far one can take a simple expression like 'rock the boat' and describe the situation so nicely with a great analogy. Here crocodile infested lake is his company,which like many other companies is going through difficult times. Crocodiles are people around him who are also battling out for survival and his bosses who are eager to cut him or anyone at his level to save a lot of money. Leaky boat is his position. Winds brewing is the economy deteriorating.

He said all this in a few minutes with his inimitable touch of humor which is always so classy. So, next time when somebody challenges you to rock the boat, make sure you are in good condition before you do.


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