After finalizing the formatting of my book, I took a trip to the Dominican Republic to look at something — anything — besides a computer and formatting information. Interesting country. A developing country with building everywhere and people who are open and hospitable to their guests.
I took two excursions; one to the countryside and the other to the city of Santa Domingo. While in the countryside I learned how “Pecking Order” came about. We can thank Thorleif Schjelderup-Ebbe for introducing this dominance idea in 1921.
His theory included that “…defiance and aggression in the hen is accomplished with the beak…roosters tend to leap and use their claws during conflict…”
Thinking about this, it kinda fits us humans, too. Women fight with their words and men fight with their fists. Amazing.
And winning a fight is what pecking order is all about. Those beaks and claws have a lot to say on who is going to “rule the roost” — be in charge of the chicken coop. Now simply transfer that idea to humans and you can see who is going to dominate the importance in the group or organization. How well you play the office politics is how high you will go in the corporation. That is the pecking order, the hierarchy. Play the game or step aside for those who want to peck each other to prove who is on top.
There are advantages to peck your way to the top — priority access to resources. Think about the chicken.
That “top chicken” will have access to the best of food, the best looking hen, and once he has laid claim to his rank, few other roosters will fight him. (They know he already has won.)
In the human realm, the “top chicken” has access to more money which buys him a bigger house, a bigger car, more of any heart’s desires. And once you get to be the really big “top chicken” no one , or basically no one, will mess with trying to topple you. Competitors may try to be equal and surpass your achievements, but they do not mess with the “top chicken” who has already made it to the top. Of course, the “top chicken” will have to flaunt his weight around every so often so the other chickens do not forget who is on top.
There will always be the loser, the guy at the end, the runt of the group, but most chickens will fall someplace in the middle. Remember, there is only one “Top Chicken” in a group or organization. Always has been, always will be.
So, there you have it. What I learned in the Dominican Republic is that chickens and humans are not that far apart when it comes to the game we play to be on top. And me, I fall in the middle. I never wanted to play the pecking game. Too stressful!
Until Friday … have a great week!