MANAGEMENT AND MAHABHARATA
Mahabharata is known as largest epic of the world. A gift of knowledge to the world. It is not only a tale of kings,queens and war, but it is story of establishing empire, struggle for power and knowing about indepth human behaviour. Now business not only consist of profit and loss it made, but also consist of amalgamation, finance, strategies and competitive advantage. Hence, business has several lessons to be learnt from Mahabharata
Kauravas and Pandavas can be considered as two strong competitors in a market. There were too many factors that made Pandavas win over Kauravas inspite of Kauravas having more resources than Pandavas had.
Following are few management lessons from Mahabharata –
1 Leadership- Lord Krishna undoubtedly was the leader in whole story of Mahabharata who guided Pandavas all through their tough times and remind them regarding their duties and objectives of life. Inspite he was leader he never played any role in battle. He motivated all the skills required to fight for themselves and betterment of world.
Eg- In a same way, making organisations to achieve its mission is in the hands of leader. Like success of companies like Apple, Sony, Infosys,etc.goes to their leaders because they are one who tread the path of success in difficult times.
2. Seeing an opportunity- When Pandavas were sent on exile, they did not lose their heart. They saw it as a opportunity and focused on developing their own competency. Yudhishthira worked on building his expertise in dice game. Bhima worshipped Lord Hanuman and became expert in mace fighting. Arjun developed several skillsets apart from archery. Nakula and Sahadevh too developed their mastery over medicine.
Eg- Companies which stood strong and continued to deliver the same efficiency and improved on their drawbacks grew stronger and passed dark clouds of recession. Amazon, Dominos are worth mentioning.
3. Neglect none- Nakula and Sahadev were step brothers of Yudhishthira, Bhima and Arjuna but they were never neglected and ill-treated. Even though Nakula and Sahadev played a minute role in battlefield, they did lot of work behind the screen. They treated all injured soldiers and healed their wounds.
Eg- Companies must give equal importance to all departments. It may be finance, HR, Marketing, R&D. None of them is taken to be lightly because they have their own role to play in building healthy organisations.
4- Team work- Team work of Pandavas is one more thing that needs to be highly appreciated. Everyone on the side of Pandavas was highly commited to their goal. They were selfless and bound to their ultimate aim of dharma. Even in times of difficulty they motivated and stood by each other.
Eg- Organisations need to build a good team spirit among its employees and care for their employees. HCL technologies always gave first credit to the team work for their success.
5- Empowerment of Women- In case of Kauravas they never gave too importance towards women for decision making. Gandhari retreated to the inner chambers but nobody listened to her. In case of Pandavas kunti was the supreme authority for the Pandavas. While, Draupadi was a companion in whatever Pandavas did. She had big role in all decision making without her Pandavas would have probably retired to the forest.
Management lesson – Women is equal to better half. Any team which doesn’t have women is unbalanced. The Masculine traits of aggression and dominance should be balanced by Feminine traits of harmony and sustenance.
6. Diversification- Today there is intense competition between organisations. Mahabharata helps us to learn that all-out zero-sum battle ends with destruction of all. The Victors of Mahabharata suffered equally as the losers, and what they got was desolate land and ravaged country. That’s why company must try to find out collaboration wherever possible, pool their resources and offer innovative solutions for customer’s money. Companies must look into social as well as environmental implications of their activities.
Mahabharata is a story of challenges which makes it comparable to business situations. Every chapter of Mahabharata has a lesson which helps business executives to plan their strategy and meaningful impact. Being Indians lets start looking Mahabharata with business perspective and make maximum out of it.