When Value Creates Value

Aindrila Chatterjee

Working in a business school I come across quite a few management jargons in daily life. One such term is value creation. The definition of value creation says it is the performance of actions that increase the worth of goods, services or even a business. Many business operators now focus on value creation both in the context of creating better value for customers purchasing its products and services, as well as for shareholders in the business who want to see their stake appreciate in value. Such definitions are correct but they really rest in the mind and not in the heart where value truly lies. I would tend to argue that what you value most, lies close to your heart: family, friendship, love, etc. I somehow found it difficult to associate value with business till the following incident occurred.

My son had been complaining of severe headache for some time. Since the regular tit bits and homely advices did not seem to yield any results, I thought of taking him to a doctor. I looked up at the nearby clinic and found they had a child specialist. He was quite an elderly doctor and his mere presence seemed to add a comforting effect. He checked my son and said he seems to have sinus and needs to be referred to an ENT specialist. Since the ENT was not available till the evening and my son was in severe pain, he wrote a prescription for immediate relief but said we had to see an ENT at the earliest. As we were about to leave the room after thanking him, he asked us to wait, called the person at the reception and asked him to refund his fees since he was referring the patient to another doctor.

The receptionist tried to say that was difficult, to which the doctor said, ‘Please find out a way and get it done’. To my thankful and surprised look, he simply said, ‘It is my duty’. I was pleasantly surprised at how his traditional value of serving mankind transcended the orthodoxies of the system and created value for me. Today, I have an unshakable faith in him and will never have any second thoughts about taking my children to visit him. I am thus increasing the clinic’s revenue.

In today’s highly money oriented, competitive world, we are on the verge of losing many of our traditional values. However, the basic values of humanity are still valued at heart. Following them will surely create value in the business world too. The old doctor, to me, was an exemplar of true value creation. I am sure there are many such people. Wish we come across more of them in our daily lives as well as practice and create such values ourselves.

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