Saturday, March 25, 2023

Leadership Model as explained by Lord Krishna to Arjuna.

There are many leadership models. Perhaps it is the hot topic always discussed. Still, the code for being a great leader is yet to be cracked. Lately when there is a leadership discussion or leadership course of top managers, I find few things like self awareness, mindfulness, spirituality content in that. However, though it is said a lot, it is very difficult to practice. I have seen leaders just speaking about empathy but not practicing it. Finally all those models are just to speak for others and not for themselves.

When we look back at our great ancient scripture, Bhagavad Gita, all dimensions of life are discussed in detail. The Gita teaches that leadership is not just about exerting authority and power, but it is also about being self-aware, practicing self-discipline, and leading with empathy and compassion. Here are some key principles of leadership based on the teachings of the Bhagavad Gita.

Chapter 6, Verse 5

उद्धरेदात्मनात्मानं नात्मानमवसादयेत् |

आत्मैव ह्यात्मनो बन्धुरात्मैव रिपुरात्मन: ॥5॥

"Let a man lift himself by his own self alone, let him not lower himself; for this self alone is the friend of oneself, and this self alone is the enemy of oneself."

Self-Awareness: A leader must be aware of his or her own strengths and limitations, and must strive to improve upon them.

Chapter 2, Verse 64

रागद्वेषवियुक्तैस्तु विषयानिन्द्रियैश्चरन् |

आत्मवश्यैर्विधेयात्मा प्रसादमधिगच्छति ॥64॥

"But a man who controls his senses by his mind and engages his active organs in works of devotion, without attachment, is by far superior. But by perceiving objects with the organs that are free from attraction and repulsion, and are under his own control, the self-controlled man attains serenity.”

Self-Control: A leader must be able to control his or her own thoughts, emotions, and actions, and must lead by example.

Chapter 13, Verse 8

अमानित्वमदम्भित्वमहिंसा क्षान्तिरार्जवम् |

आचार्योपासनं शौचं स्थैर्यमात्मविनिग्रह: ॥8॥

"Humility, unpretentiousness, nonviolence, forbearance, uprightness, service to the teacher, purity, steadfastness, self-control."

Humility: A leader must be humble and avoid being arrogant or self-centered.

Chapter 3, Verse 25 - 

सक्ता: कर्मण्यविद्वांसो यथा कुर्वन्ति भारत |

कुर्याद्विद्वांस्तथासक्तश्चिकीर्षुर्लोकसंग्रहम् ॥25॥

"As the ignorant perform their duties with attachment to results, O Bharata, so should the wise act without attachment, for the sake of leading people on the right path."

Vision: A leader must have a clear vision and be able to communicate it effectively to the team.

Chapter 6, Verse 23 

तं विद्याद् दु:खसंयोगवियोगं योगसञ्ज्ञितम् |

स निश्चयेन योक्तव्यो योगोऽनिर्विण्णचेतसा ॥23॥

"The yogi whose mind is fixed on Me verily attains the highest perfection of transcendental happiness. He is beyond the mode of passion, he realizes his qualitative identity with the Supreme, and thus he is freed from all reactions to past deeds."

Determination: A leader must be determined and persistent in achieving the vision and goals.

Chapter 2, Verse 47 

कर्मण्येवाधिकारस्ते मा फलेषु कदाचन |

मा कर्मफलहेतुर्भूर्मा ते सङ्गोऽस्त्वकर्मणि || 47 ||

"You have a right to perform your prescribed duty, but you are not entitled to the fruits of action. Never consider yourself to be the cause of the results of your activities, nor be attached to inaction."

Fairness: A leader must be fair and treat everyone equally, without showing favoritism or bias.

Chapter 5, Verse 18

विद्याविनयसम्पन्ने ब्राह्मणे गवि हस्तिनि |

शुनि चैव श्वपाके च पण्डिता: समदर्शिन: ॥18॥

"The humble sages, by virtue of true knowledge, see with equal vision a learned and gentle brahmana, a cow, an elephant, a dog and a dog-eater [outcast]."

Compassion: A leader must be compassionate and empathetic towards team members and their needs.

Chapter 2, Verse 14

मात्रास्पर्शास्तु कौन्तेय शीतोष्णसुखदु: खदा: |

आगमापायिनोऽनित्यास्तांस्तितिक्षस्व भारत ॥14॥

"O son of Kunti, the nonpermanent appearance of happiness and distress, and their disappearance in due course, are like the appearance and disappearance of winter and summer seasons. They arise from sense perception, O scion of Bharata, and one must learn to tolerate them without being disturbed."

Decisiveness: A leader must be able to make tough decisions in a timely manner, based on careful analysis and consideration.

Chapter 3, Verse 7

यस्त्विन्द्रियाणि मनसा नियम्यारभतेऽर्जुन |

कर्मेन्द्रियै: कर्मयोगमसक्त: स विशिष्यते ॥7॥

"But, O Arjuna, one who engages in Karma-yoga with the organs of action, controlling the organs with the mind and becoming unattached-that one excels. On the other hand, if a sincere person tries to control the active senses by the mind and begins karma-yoga [in Krishna consciousness] without attachment, he is by far superior."

Spirituality: A leader must have a spiritual outlook, and be grounded in values and principles that guide ethical behavior and decision-making.

So if you are looking for any leadership model for your organization, just follow this and built the behaviors around this model.

Please respond the survey, I am conducting, as a part of my research by clicking on >> Leadership Competencies required for managers while handling crisis situations

(Opinions are purely personal & does not represent my organizations, current or past) 

Author's books are available on AmazonFlipkartPothi and BookGanga. You can buy the print copy of Vitality in Human Resources on amazon. Click >> Vitality in Human Resource: Adding human dimensions in HR processes   


Anonymous said...

Wonderful , different meaning of Geeta on leadership.

Anonymous said...

Thank you

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