If there would have been a title named “Best Animal in hunting its Prey”, then we come across different names like White Sharks, African Lions, Spider or Wolfs. But among all, African Wild Dogs would have been named world’s greatest hunters due to their variety of strategies and adaptations. The African wild dogs are known by different names like – painted dog, painted hunting dog, spotted dog, etc.
As an entrepreneur, African wild dogs’ behavioral adaptations and hunting strategies can teach you a lot to apply in your business. We have curated a list of 10 lessons from African wild dogs and certainly these will be helpful for every entrepreneurs.
African wild dogs are nomadic creatures and are used to travel closed to 50 kilometers in one day. The proof of their phenomenal stamina comes from the range living territories which usually varies between 400 km to 1500 square kilometers. The tactics they follow during a hunt is also an evidence, where they chase their prey until it gets tired and slow. Once the prey is not able to run, they start attacking and wounding their prey.
As an entrepreneur, you should look energized all the time and it should reflect on your personality. Whether it is investors or customers, they trust the people involved before they trust the process or the idea. While pitching your idea or selling your product, be full of energy and stamina to deal with the audience.
Teamwork of African Wild Dogs
African wild dogs never hunt alone. They always attach their prey in a group as they believe that the team work brings more chances of success rate. That’s why they are the greatest hunters of the world, having success rate of catching a prey of 80%. The success rate of catching a prey in case of lions is 30%.
An entrepreneur has to accept the fact that without an effective team it is nearly impossible to achieve success. The team which works relentlessly to make your idea a reality deserves equal respect and benefits. While acquiring customers, pitching to investors, making sales or delivery – a complete team work is necessary, where you need to ensure the respective member of the team plays their assigned role.
Agile and Adapt
There is no single hunting strategy of how African wild dogs hunt their prey, except they hunt in group. The hunting strategy is completely flexible based on what is the prey and how big it is or how fast it can run. Creating panic and havoc among the herd to separate them, selecting a weak target from the herd, changing the chasing strategy for weak, strong and tired dogs and performing flanking movements are all part of their hunting strategy.
As an entrepreneur, your approach towards customer acquisition, people and technology upgrade, seeking investment should be flexible. Every customer, investor or employee is different and they need to be dealt differently to ensure harmony in process and innovation. There is no one-thumb rule of how you run a startup and it is you who knows your idea and process more than anyone else. Keep an agile process to innovate your idea, the process and the people.
Narrowing down your Target
While hunting their prey, the selection is important. African wild dogs never go after the whole herd. They create panic in a herd to separate them and then try to select the weak members. They narrow down their target by selecting the weakest member of the herd and the whole group focus on that prey to convert it to a kill.
It is much more important for an entrepreneur to know who the actual audience is. Usually entrepreneurs get confused about their target audience and build a product which is not intended to a certain demography. Identify who is your target audience – their gender, age-group, locality, behavior and culture.
Giving Importance and Care
African wild dogs possess the highest relationship values in terms of giving proper importance and care to the old dogs, female dogs, injured or sick dogs and pups. After a kill, the old and injured dogs are always given first choice over the spoils. Similarly the pups are given fresh meat after a kill. When a dog becomes ill or injured, they are always taken care by the rest of the pack which feeds and cares them.
Giving importance and care is a crucial and necessary factor for every entrepreneur. Whether it is your customer, employee, investor or your family – you have to ensure that you are always giving importance and care to them. The reason your business has achieved or trying to achieve success is because of these people.
While making a kill or feeding on it – the African wild dogs are always alert to ensure that hyenas don’t interfere, which is a usual attempt from surrounding hyenas. Few of the strong wild dogs always watch the bay, while rest of the pack feed on the kill.
Being alert and informed of new innovations, technologies, competitors and market behavior is completely necessary for you. When you know how the market situation and customer behavior is changing with the course of the time – you can make necessary steps to upgrade your innovation and people to sustain.
African wild dogs are the greatest hunters of the world. At the same time – they are the animals which always maintain harmony among their pack. They don’t fight over a kill while feeding unlike the lions. A kill is made by the leading pack and everyone in the pack gets a chance to feed on it properly.
Never take the whole credit of success to yourself or few major members of the company. It degrades the ethical values and brings down the motivation level of people to cooperate for further innovation or growth. Share the success with every person working with you and make them feel obliged for this.
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Photo Credit: Wikipedia