Saturday, 24 November 2007

What Happened to the Teotihuacán?

I had the opportunity to visit Mexico recently to attend the International Federation of Accountants Council meeting. It was held in Mexico City, a city with around 20 million population. Besides spending my time in meetings and seminars (I shared Malaysian Institute of Accountants experience in having a mutual recognition agreement with the Ikatan Akuntan Indonesia), I went to visit one of the most visited site outside Mexico City on the last day of my stay, the Teotihuacán pyramids.

Like many of the archaeological sites in Mexico, Teotihuacán guards secrets we have yet to unravel. The origins of Teotihuacán are uncertain, although it is thought some of the inhabitants arrived from the Valley of Mexico to the south, refugees from an eruption of the Xitle volcano, which caused major devastation and forced the survivors in the region to seek a new place to settle. Construction of the city probably started in the first two centuries BC, and the civilization reached its high point between 350 and 650 AD.

One of the greatest mysteries of Teotihuacán is that no one knows where the huge population that lived here eventually ended up. It is as if they vanished without a trace. What happened? Building pyramids was never easy. So I supposed they should be a group of people with high intelligence and at least, with superb design and project management capabilities. Reflecting this on business, I am sure you could recall brands or companies that were dominant in the past but are no longer in existence. This is meant to suggest that no matter how successful you are now, the future depends on how you seek opportunities from the dynamic business environment and how successful you are in managing the ever changing risks. You simply cannot be in a standstill position!
Many people in business tend to be complacent upon reaching certain level of success. However, as what I always preach, what worked yesterday may not be so tomorrow. It's all about looking forward, undertanding trends, identifying and capturing opportunities and ensuring your business remain competitive against major competitors, which could also change in nature and number. Competing as a contender is definately different than competing as a defender.
So, if you feel that your business is quite successful, please remember of what happened to the Teotihuacans!
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