• Tamara Medina Sapovalova

What animal behaviour can teach us about work, life and business

Updated: Apr 17, 2019

Photo by Deon Cerff

Sometime ago, I watched the BBC programme series 'The Hunt'. It was fascinating to watch. Apart from the stunning video clips and all of the work that was involved in the filming, it was the lessons that we can learn from animal behaviour and some of their attributes that really intrigued me. All of these lessons can be applied to work, to business and to life in general. 

Patience and timing from the Leopard

Everything in life is about timing. When you bake a cake - if you take it out too early, it will be flat and yet if you leave it in the oven too long, it will be burned. You simply can't rush - or prolong - things. Everything has to go through a process. Sometimes we try to rush through things, trying to get to the "final" outcome, when really, we should focus on the now. This can often be the case when we want to do something new at work, right now (when we're not really ready), or when we're in too much of a rush to get that big promotion or client. However, if you take your time to learn and develop your skills properly and step back allowing things to unfold while waiting patiently for the perfect timing, it will increase your chances of success. 

From the leopard we can learn that opportunities will come to you when you are clear about what you want and "strike" at the perfect moment.

Persistence and the ability to grow thick crocodile skin

The fact that today is not the right time doesn't mean that it never will be. No matter what the situation is, the more “No’” you hear, the closer it brings you to a “Yes”. Learning to cope with rejection and continue onwards is crucial in any career and especially so when you are looking for a job or business opportunity. Don’t take constructive criticism or interview feedback personally. Always remember that an interview is all about two-way communication, it's a chance for you and the interviewer to learn more about each other. So ask yourselves:

●     Could you work well with that person?

●     Do personal values and company values align?

●     Do you like what the company stands for?

●     Is the company the right fit for you … are you the right for the company?

Agility and flexibility like the gazelle

There are times when you need to be able to make decisions quickly and be open and flexible enough to change direction. 

Team work like the wild dogs chasing their prey

Work with others when the task at hand is impossible to tackle on your own. You need to surround yourself with great people to help you with the things that you are not so good at, or just to keep things running when you need some down time. Remember: it’s important to have breaks and take time to do things we enjoy. Having this time for ourselves makes us more creative and able to approach things from a different perspective.

Be able to see the big picture like the hawk

Keeping the bigger picture in your mind gives you perspective and from this, comes balance. 

Finally, the most important … Don't Give Up!

It’s not about how many times something it doesn’t work. Try something new, change, adapt, tweak, find new options and opportunities. Keep trying until you find the solution, the amazing job that meets your needs or the perfect product for your market. These are only a few things that we can learn from animals' hunting behaviour. What other things can we learn from animals? I would love to hear your ideas.

#career #entrepreneurs



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