The never ending quest
What is the upper limit for growth?
Take any start up for example. From being the brain child of a really passionate individual, it takes form as a small entity and struggles to catch the fancy of investors. Once its value is realized, soon its swarmed with funds. The idea slowly becomes an organization with increasing head counts. It becomes the mother hen that has to feed many a hungry mouth that is not restricted to its chicks alone. One hardly realizes that, end of the day, its a solitary idea of an individual that lives up to its potential. Like all celebrities who invariably are considered to be master of every subject under the sun and are expected to have an opinion on anything and everything, the idea very soon undergoes the 4 cycle stage of success- Birth of the idea, Rise of nay sayers, Attack of cheaper clones and Merger/acquisition by a bigger player. Irony being, the bigger player usually have promoting innovation/value adds as the best part of their company culture.
Similarly, consider an individual who starts as a rookie in an organization, cuts his teeth across technologies, grows on to be a lead and moves into managerial domain, with appropriate salary increases. Once he cuts across the mid level management segment, the career progress is akin to travelling on an ocean in a kayak, with one eye ahead looking out for opportunities, cropping up like islands of recluse and refuge and other eye behind to watch out for competition from a "less expensive" version of his own self, updating his life jacket of knowledge at all possible venues and avoiding any swirls of re-orgs and layoffs. Those with gumption decide to float their own entity and go through what is described on the previous paragraph.
Same is the cycle for any major organization as well. The more honest or realistic their revenue forecasts harder would be their fall from investor grace. They are expected to churn in more and more profit and are almost given a free reign as to how its achieved as long its within justifiably moral and legal limits. Does any one even pause to reflect that no company can forever go on churning ever increasing profit figures and at some point its going to flatten out? What happens when the realization strikes in? Those who discover the symptom the earliest, starts pulling their money out. Slowly the exodus begins, with top talent leaving the company and the logo dies a slow death. The cycle more or less overlaps what is described on the first paragraph.
Each of us, start our quest for knowledge along side the pursuit of getting rewarded, right from our school days. Be it rank, mark, money or designation its always the same. Similar to how one can't stay on the same class to learn the subject more in detail, one cannot and does not have the option to settle in this quest. You either move ahead or get mowed. When does this cycle end? how does one get out of this maze of illusory success that promises to be never ending? When is it enough to say enough? And once you decide to stop, what next? Is this the reason why the ancestors decided to have vana prastha as the final stage of life? Die in peace?
Time to start planting.