Saturday, April 4, 2009

Chanakya to Lakshmi Narayan Mittal : History of Indian Business

Indian Business class known as Vaishya was involved in different forms of trade and had a very prosperous time from Pre-Mauryan period. In Mauryan period , India experienced its first kingdom . The establishment of the kingdom, help the trade routes to be more secure . This enabled the business to reach new levels . It is in this period , that the 'Chanakya' – the master politician and a teacher of Takashashila University who later become the prime minister of Chandragupta Maurya wrote “Arthasastra”. Arthasastra was a definite treatise of politics , economics and state administration . It had clear regulatory framework for a king , to manage his kingdom . Further ,Chanakya himself was also one of the earliest thinker, on the subject of political economy. .

Even at the time of Chanakya , Indian business people had a psyche of working for an higher ideal. They pioneered the thought of Corporate sccial responsibility . Indian business people where famous for there ideal of Niskam Karma. They have a firm belief on the following statement of Lord Krishna.

Mayi sarvaani karmaani sannyasyaadhyaatma chetasaa;
Niraasheer nirmamo bhootwaa yudhyaswa vigatajwarah.

30. Renouncing all actions in Me, with the mind centred in the Self, free from hope and egoism, and from (mental) fever, do thou fight.

- Bhagavad Gita , Chapter III , Verse 10

In medieval period , Mughal India was the second largest economy in the world. The gross domestic product of India in the 16th century was estimated at about 24.5% of the world economy, in comparison to Ming China's 25% share.

The dissolution of Mughal empire, itself brought some crises due to the weak administration, which helped Eastern Indian Company to gain control over India, using the Business route .

In the early 19th Century , there are modern business community which became very active . Marwaris became very active in Kolkata . The Parsees, become active in Mumbai . Though Persians could really get through things pretty easy in Mumbai, it was not so easy for Marwaris in Kolkata. The ethnic group originated from North western Indian state of Rajasthan belong to a desert, and are more exposed to a life style of scarcity . That made there fiscal discipline better than others.

( To be continued …..)


2. Chapter III , Bhagavad Gita , Ved Vyasa

Friday, April 3, 2009

The Story of India

Historian Michael Woods take on Story of India . He explores the history of India for last 10,000 years .

The first episode looks at identity and the roots of India's famous "unity in diversity".

As Sri Aurobindo puts it - "Unity not Uniformity " in Human Cycle . This has been the basis of Indian story. In Chicago Swami Vivekananda had put it in the most interesting way.

"Whosoever comes to Me, through whatsoever form, I reach him; all men are struggling through paths which in the end lead to me."

He quotes here an important word of Lord Krishna from Bhagavad Gita which is the true spirit of India .

He continues to say also how India have given home to major communities when they are in distress .

Can a story of such diversity, be told in few episodes ?

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Who said entreprenuership is easy ?

I didn't .

That doesn't stops my passion over it . But just because , I am passionate about something , it is not the fact , that the others will be so.

Infact , you had to be more dispassionate, to not take even your monthly expenses from the company, in order to let the team, and others get there salary.

That's where Bhagawad Gita come into rescue . Lord Krishna wears many hat . He was an great mentor , philosopher , spiritual leader , effective manager and lately I have discovered he was an successful entreprenuer too.

Look at this verses.

Brahmanyaadhaaya karmaani sangam tyaktwaa karoti yah;
Lipyate na sa paapena padmapatram ivaambhasaa.

10. He who performs actions, offering them to an higher ideal and abandoning attachment, is not tainted by sin as a lotus leaf by water.

Lord Krishna says here, he who performs actions , offering them to an higher ideal ( which an entrepreneur has to do anyway ) is not tainted by sin ( which I understand the difficulties as entrepreneur faces ) as lotus leaf by water.

He makes entreprenuership easy . Infact , if you can put the mind towards an higher ideal than difficulties doesn't affect you.

That doesn't means it becomes easy , still you stay in ease , in the midst of difficulty.

It is indeed a real and complex thought design made by Lord Krishna . That's why, I say he is an great entrepreneur too , who innovated the process of thinking and provide new thought solutions that would enable people like us to take the hard journey.

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Is Lord Krishna the Guru of the greatest management Gurus the world has produced ?

Buddhiyukto jahaateeha ubhe sukrita dushkrite;
Tasmaad yogaaya yujyaswa yogah karmasu kaushalam.

50. Endowed with wisdom (evenness of mind), one casts off in this life both good and evil deeds; therefore, devote thyself to Yoga; Yoga is skill in action.

Lord Krishna can be looked as the 'Guru of the best of Management Guru' available to humanity right now. In a very simple statement like the above, he demystifies the entire understanding of efficiency and effectivity , which are fundamental blocks of Modern Management.

In one word he simplifies also the entire HR practise and says - 'Yoga karmasu kaushalam'.That is the golden rule of Performance Management .It is the skill in action , that help people to perform better . You cannot perform , if you mind is disturbed. All performance depends on the equanimity of mind.

I often wondered , why people have excessively focused, it as a scripture of liberation only , when it carries the right vales of managing organization, and managing life too.

So when the action is performed with a equanimity of mind , without any expectation , that is itself a great success formula ,for an individual and also for an organization .Infact ,actions which are of a binding nature lose that nature when performed with equanimity of mind.

Actions performed in this way are both efficient and effective.If the fundamental objective of management is to create both efficient and effective actions . Lord Krishna gives the simplest route to attend it .

The root of the present economic crisis is the way the actions are performed by humanity . This form of collective actions, could only bind us to cycles of recessions . This actions are not made from a proper mental state , economic growth could be lead to abolishment of social , environmental and spiritual growth. Only handful could become rich, with the cost of the entire community .

Krishna in his universal and nonreligious tone, makes it very simple, that how the organisation and the Industries can prosper when people follow the model of right action, in other parts of Gita .

Monday, March 30, 2009

The perishable and Imperishable nature of Market Research

Sri Bhagavaan Uvaacha:
Aksharam brahma paramam swabhaavo’dhyaatmamuchyate; Bhootabhaavodbhavakaro visargah karmasamjnitah.

The Blessed Lord said:

3. Brahman is the Imperishable, the Supreme; His essential nature is called Self-knowledge; the offering (to the gods) which causes existence and manifestation of beings and which also sustains them is called action.

Any market is the sum total of collective human desire, at a given point of time .

The Principles of market is imperishable which is Brahman according to Lord Krishna's term . Now who is this Brahman ? As he says in other place in Gita, that he is Nirguna (devoid of qualities) , Nirakara ( devoid of forms) .

If you look at the fundamental principle of the market , which is to exchange labors , sometimes in raw form of labor, and in other times in a packaged form of service and product, it is existing from time immemorial .The underdeveloped forms of it ,could be found in tribes, and also in animal communities .

However ,the material component is different according to space ,time and causality.
We can see the gamut of product and services are constantly changing . This products and services ,infact are a form of action dedicated to the principle of exchange of effort and satisfaction of need .

It is when the common man consecrates his action to this fundamental principle , that the material world of market gets created .

This is what is known as sacrificial action , which helps to make collective good . When people fails to do this sacrificial action , the world faces crisis, one after another.

Any market research initiative which is based on this deeper wisdom is bound to be successful.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Knowledge and Wisdom

A New article published in Allindialive, on the topic of 'Knowledge and Wisdom' based on Bhagavad Gita