FARMER OR HUNTER?
BY RAVPREET GANESH, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, PUBLICIS CAPITAL + QUIZ
This is a question that has always intrigued me – what should one be? Is it good to nurture or go for the kill? I believe that we are all wired to be hunters, but as man evolved, he started nurturing; so there is a bit of a hunter and a farmer in all of us.
“I come from the deep countryside. My family was in farming. I was not really exposed to business. Coming from that environment, I just wanted in my life to go overseas - that was a childhood dream because I wanted diversity, contacts, cultural meetings with others.” -- JeanPascal Tricoire
This adage best sums me up – my fauzi background further fuelled it, and in advertising, I am living my dream. But the farmer in me has always kept me coming back to things I love doing the most, like finding value in raw materials, open green fields, immersing my hands in soil, seeing a plant emerge from a seed etc… but, how does one fulfil that urge in a bustling place like South Delhi?
So last year, I embarked on a journey of nurturing this side of myself on my terrace. It involved lots of reading on the subject over the Internet. Armed with enough knowledge, the next two weekends were spent at different nurseries as I was very sure what I wanted to grow – lots of greens – spinach, mustard, fenugreek, celery, carrots, cauliflower, radishes, tomatoes, potatoes, cabbage, capsicum, broccoli, eggplants, lemons, grapes, etc. I wanted it all. Go big or nothing, right? After mixing up the soil and with all seeds sown, it was now time to wait and reap benefits from the harvest. This was essentially what the last winter was all about for me. The time finally came when the seeds started to sprout, but quite a few did not. That made me a little sad as there was a lot of hard work and time that went behind the experience. And year one looked like, well…
All my carrots looked like little fingers, the radishes didn’t grow, we had lots of salads and the cauliflowers grew at the same time (though they were meant to grow one by one). It taught me that the Internet doesn’t have all the answers; and that I needed to improvise and be ready for unplanned things that Mother Nature will throw at you. Ah, how well-laid plans go for a toss with just one winter shower!!
So the winter of 2017 saw a more seasoned farmer/ hunter who decided that killing and nurturing go hand in hand. And that you need to be ruthless to weed out not only the wild plants, but also plants that may kill others. Also, you need to take care of those who start slow so that they can bloom and bear fruit too, as everything doesn’t grow at the same time – some are slow, others fast, but a good hunter knows that sometimes it’s worth waiting a while as the final outcome will surely be a good one.
My experiences over the last two winters have already got me thinking about what the next one would be like. In fact, I have already compiled a long list of things that I would want to sow the next time around. Anybody care to join me on my real Farmville?