Published On : Sun, Oct 25th, 2015

TieCON 2015: Lessons from Mahabharata for Effective Management

Rai (1)Nagpur:Dr. Himanshu Rai, Dean MISB Bocconi School of Management of Milan, Italy with a branch in Mumbai that he handles, was the most fascinating Speaker with whom the session at Tiecon 2015 ended yesterday.

The most important message he had to deliver was ” it does not matter whether you are good or bad, such qualities are immaterial – what really matters is that you are Right or Wrong, Right for the maximum people, right for the deserving cause.”

He expounded on the subject with interesting examples from the Mahabharat saga including instances such as when Karna is finally killed by Arjuna when the former’s chariot is stuck and he is on the ground trying to get the wheel out. Arjuna was hesitating in attacking him then, but Krishna goaded him on. “Do that which serves the cause of Dharma – this is a war of Dharma vs Adharma and killing this man is important for you to win the war” he advised Arjuna.

In fact Himanshu, who is an eclectic academician with a Doctorate in Sanskrit as well as Management from IIM, Ahmedabad, borrows from about ten books written by authors, business leaders all over the globe to impart management lessons.

Shakespeare and JRD Tata are just two of them. Another favourite book of his is ‘Alice in Wonderland’ from which he began his lecture.

Alice, when she drops down the rabbit hole and has quite lost her way in the maize below, encounters a speaking cat.
“Which way should I take?” Alice asks the cat. “Depends on where you want to go” replies the cat. “Doesn’t quite matter where” says Alice. Then take any path, it will not make a difference, is the cat’s wise answer.

In the journey of life, how can you reach your destination – if you do not know what it is?

Dr. Rai rued that Indian leaders, in all sectors, seem to have quite lost the way which is why the fastest growing phenomenon in our country is Scams. They grow at an annual rate of 112%!His synopsis was – if you learn well from the Mahabharat, this is what you will incorporate within you:

Fair mindedness; and

According to Aristotle, for most effective communication, which is the core of leadership one must be guided by – Ethos; Pathos and Logos.

Dr. Himanshu Rai who as the Convenor of CAT 2010 successfully led the largest format change in the world’s testing history exceeding all global standards of testing and who gives consultancy in Leadership training, Negotiations skill and Organizational restructuring; had this final verse from the Bhagvad Gita as his most useful dictum.

“Karmanye vadhikarase ma phaleshu kadachan….” Which means “You have the right only to Right Action, not to the fruits thereof. Do not resort to inaction on any pretext”.