Sanjeev Kotnala: Do you have a Black Hole in your organisation?

03 Feb,2021

By Sanjeev Kotnala


Recently, I read an article in National Geographic. It said the closest (known) Black Hole to Earth was found ‘hiding in plain sight’ and far nearer than expected. Moreover, the Black Hole, the massive cosmic object was lurking in a star system one can see with the naked eye.



Is There a Black Hole in Your Organisation?


Black Hole in an organisation are people, process or a system that pulls down the experience. It sucks all the energies and wipes off all the positive gains. The result, they holds back the organisation and prevents growth. Blackholes processes are considered sacrosanct within the organisation and are never challenged. At some stage, the organisation invested funds to create these systems at a high consultant fee. They maybe a favourite of the corner office and no one want’s to tell the king.


The Black Hole typically is so historical, traditional and fundamental to the whole organisational ecosystem that we take it for granted. We do not re-evaluate it. We instead try to adapt and adjust around it.



Black Holes Are Everywhere.


Black Holes are typically found in the headquarters. They are also known to surface in a remote district, where no amount of focus and investment seems to show any signs of gains.

Like the Milky Way which is littered with Black Holes, the organisation and its operations too are full of Black Holes hiding in plain sight. They remain unrecognised because of the lethargy and lack of intent of the system to address the problem.


Look at the area  where organisation expects no growth. The reason maybe the Black Hole rather than the potential of the market. The Black Hole most likely is the reason behind the gap between the expectation and experience delivered by the product, brand or service in the market.


Every marketing ecosystem is full of Black Holes. They are efficiency and effectiveness dampener. They pull back, create a bottleneck and are primed with negative energies. They think of problems but never a solution. They avoid detection by remaining in shadows of a star performer. A star performer may turn a Black Hole when promoted or given responsibility beyond their current capabilities without training.



Another View Of Organisational Blackhole.


Organisational Black Holes lead to opaque systems. Any and every kind of idea, innovation and change are killed without much cross-examination. The Black Holes resist changes and departure from established processes. They remain inward-directed and hold on to the legacy of past successes. They are template operators in a self-contained system.


Black Holes continuously feed on others to keep the chaos increasing. Clinging to the star performer, they feed and survive of collaborative teams glory. They are insecure and isolation. They hate new authorities and changes.



Blackholes must be removed from the system. 


Organisational must invest time and energies to identify the Black Holes and then defuse their gravitational pull by changing their profile and responsibilities. Maybe few black holes need to be kicked out with high orbital velocity.


If organisations fail to address the system,  the blackholes will continue to bring down energy levels and eat up the employees who bring with growth ideas. And at some stage, the Black Hole can be so powerful and strong, that the whole system can disintegrate.



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