Societies that laze, not labour

The newly opened elevated expressway that connects BTM to Electronic city at Bangalore provides a convenient ride. An added advantage of the expressway is that its made the roads below less congested. That's because quite a few vehicles now take the elevated expressway. But then, despite all these enhanced conveniences, one thing hasn't changed.

People's attitudes. On the expressway and below it. Let me explain. Riding on the expressway that has two clearly marked lanes, I watch vehicles dart back and across on the lanes. No indicators, no lane discipline. Below, vehicles continue their mad rush which has gotten madder as the congestion eases up. Despite the increased speeds, I still watch in horror people jaywalking. Its a casual amble that I witness, when I see people cross roads perilously as vehicles rush by.

I guess, some things don't change. And this lack of change can be attributed to the concept of inertia. The desire to continue in a state of motion or rest.

The worst enemy of 'new' products or brands that come into a market is consumer inertia. A phenomenon that keeps consumers at their current products and current ways of behaviour. For example, Kellogg breakfast cereals don't just face Indian palates that refuse to switch. They face Indian attitudes too. For most people in India breakfast is something that appears on the table, courtesy moms or housemaids. Kellogg happens differently. You pick your bowl, grab the cereal box, fill it up, top it with milk and a sweetener. Then dig in. Its all done by you. When was the last time breakfast in India was done by the lazy eater?

The harder of aspects for brands to change is attitudes. Attitudes are what precede exhibited behaviour. An attitude of waiting at the table for breakfast means Kellogg's may be shunned. Because the eater has to do it himself. That's exactly what its like in many Indian classrooms too. Spoon fed kids don't know what its like to do the bulk of the learning on their own. And so if they are asked to, they balk. They throw up their hands in the air and wonder why there's such a diktat. Like I said, they'd rather be spoon fed.

Now, attitudes such as these aggregate and show up in society. As one that has a populace that lazes more than labours. Such societies I believe have a chance in hell to lead the future.


I know.


Soumya said…

Thought this site would be interesting to read for you

Unknown said…
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Deepali Chandra said…
I think seeing the traffic in ANY city of India, we cant say we know driving or traffic rule. What is line discipline, pathway for pedestrian and cyclist, switch over from one lane to other, speed limit etc. are rare to observe in India. I recently came to Australia and realized till this age I had never actually knew what traffic rules are...!! I do remember Prof Perry use to say when he was at Bangalore," I chant my prayers when I leave home for ABA." As traffic is so chaotic. :D
And yes off course Attitude is the underlying fact. Most of the kids believe in spoon feeding than walking and finding path/ directions shown by teachers, guides or mentors.
1)Its a top-down approach. Govt collects heavy taxes, then collects heavy toll fees (Electronic city flyover has toll from Feb 1) for infrastructure on PPP model. So each entity (govt, people) try to maximize their benefit.

2)Kelloggs faced failure in the initial years when there was not much foreign travel by an average Indian. Now with S/W industry, there are many pseudo Americans who want to mimic Americans.

These people are the new target customers for Kelloggs. Also, the Indian food habits required heavy breakfast like Aloo Parantha which Kelloggs could'nt provide.
Cinish said…
I wonder why this forces me to remember Mary Schmich's famous article where she said "Accept certain inalienable truths: Prices will rise. Politicians will philander. You, too, will get old. And when you do, you'll fantasize that when you were young, prices were reasonable, politicians were noble and children respected their elders"
In the 50's when the Motorways opened up in the UK, people did not know how to drive on them either,India being relatively young in the evolution of road manners should be given some slack.
King said…
Teachers are the pillars on which the learning society is built.. Some lazy professors wile away time in the class by screening full-length hollywood movies in the pretext of teaching management lessons from the movies..!! No wonder why students turn lazy and expect themselves to be spoon-fed..
Ray Titus said…
Appreciate all comments... :)

Mrs. Soumya, in Bangalore? :)

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