The big life-lesson from bananas.

Do you know bout half of all the bananas consumed worldwide come from the same tree?

Hey  i mean the very same tree . One tree gave rise to all half of the banana trees you see around. Yes! one tree.   You don’t believe?


Ever heard of the Cavendish? It has no seeds and  is propagated by grafting or cloning. Which means that they’re all identical.

Okay you think what if its true? Why care? Here is why…

If you think rigid is cool, and it’s ok for everyone to expect, think and like the very same thing, a thing with no variation and little surprise, then this is good news indeed, because you have banana tree, a model for you to imitate.

Until, of course, a fungus comes along and wipes out the entire monoculture.

What did you expect? The way banana trees sprout to life, is without variations and in case you missed the evolution class here is a general truth;

Its variation that gets to breed resilience, and adaptations that enhance survival.

Another general truth , (this one not from evolution theory ) is this…

It’s tempting to want all your bananas to be the same or similar to a friend’s bananas. To have all your attributes, hobbies and more a equal to someone’s especially if that someone is good, since by being  just like everyone else it reduces a huge pressure.

When you are look like others, It’s easier to talk about what you do, easier to fit in, easier to be ignored. No strings attached. 😀
And that is something bad!

Since without variation and differences, innovation and teamwork would be impossible.

What? Teamwork?

Yah! a team is only complete when with players with various attributes and different roles.

“A random group of intelligent problem solvers will outperform a group of the best problem solvers. People from different backgrounds have varying ways of looking at problems, what I call tools. […] If we have people with diverse tools, they’ll get stuck in different places. One person can do their best, and then someone else can come in and improve on it. There’s a lot of empirical data to diversity improve productivity and perfomance.”

— Scott E. Page (2008) In Professor’s Model, Diversity = Productivity
— Lu Hong & Scott E. Page (2004) Paper

Isn’t it the right time to embrace diversity? to start thinking differently and accept that we are different in a special kind of way? Coz, by doing so we will become;
– resiliant & more productive.

Hurry up! ….  Stop being a banana!

Hat tip to Seth Godin for some insights.


One Reply to “The big life-lesson from bananas.”

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