Management and Ramayana

Management of any type, whether in business or some other human activity, in simplest of words is the act of bringing people together to work for achieving the desired goal. Broadly speaking management is defined by five functions

·         Planning

·         Organizing

·         Leading

·         Controlling

·         Coordinating

There are number of books, journals, articles etc are available, which talks about various management theories. They explain management not only as a science but also as an art. Numerous research papers and case studies provide us real life experiences and examples of using these management theories in building an organization. But way before the modern day management gurus gave their theories, principles and concepts of management the great writers like Tulsidas, Valmiki etc had explained them in the ancient Hindu epics.

If one studies these mythological books, then one can easily make out about the various management lessons which are taught in them. Every incidence teaches us a new lesson and in itself is a classic example of putting management at its best use and getting the work done.

Examples from Ramayana

One of the most obvious incidences, in which use management principles is very clearly visible is that of Hanuman going to Lanka. His mission was to locate Sita there and give her Lord Ram’s message. When it became clear that Sita was in Lanka, Jamvant asked Hanuman to go there. He helped him in realising his true potential and motivated him to go in the enemy’s camp. Once mentally prepared for the job and reached there, first thing which Hanuman did was to completely analyse the situation in Lanka. He did a complete study about the Lankans, assessing their strengths and weaknesses, the various threats and opportunities which he had in the enemy’s camp.

This is what management is all about

·         Ascertaining the goals, or job to be done.

·         Getting mentally prepared for it.

·         Having a right plan.

·         Analyzing the strengths and weaknesses of the competitor and what threats and opportunities are there in the business.

This SWOT [strength, weakness, opportunities and threats] analysis is one of the most important aspects of modern day management. Moreover Jamvant motivating Hanuman is a classic example of a good Manager helping his personnel to realise their potential and acting accordingly.

The other example which I would like to talk about here is that of good and bad managers. A good manager is the one, who can get his work done even from the rivals. In Ramayana Sughriv has shown some of the best managerial characteristics. As a successful manager he had Ram to work accordingly and got his kingdom back from a brother who was far mightier than him.

·         A good example of getting into strategic alliance with others to achieve your desired goal.

Using his managerial skills he even had Angad to work for him. Angad was the son of his brother whom he got killed by Ram. Had Sughriv been a bad manager then the same Angad would have proved to be his arch nemesis.

In the same Ramayana, again and again Ravana has shown the signs of a bad manager, and hence led to the demise of his kingdom. From the starting itself he ignored the suggestions of his managers and got his kingdom in the state of war with Ram. Moreover during a crisis, a company needs its best of the managers to bail it out of the same. A good manager listens to what his subordinates has to say and tries to keep them together especially when the organization needs them the most. But Ravana’s mismanagement was responsible for Vibhishan [one of the wisest manager he should have listened to] leaving him amidst a crisis.

It is said that businesses are run on relations. A manager who can nurture good relations with the employees, clients and anyone in whose contact the organization and the manager comes in, can do wonders for his company. Lord Ram was very good at it. He was the master of nurturing relations. His prowess at it was so great that while Ravana was lying wounded in the battle field and was about to die, he shared some important lessons which he had learnt in his life. The same Ravana, who at the same time had not responded to Lakshman, when he was sent to seek Ravana’s wisdom by Ram, was more than happy in sharing his knowledge with Ram.

All these examples and many more like this, tells us a great deal about management. For a manager there is lot to learn from our epics. Not just Ramayana, but Gita, Mahabharat and others as well have a lot to offer as management lessons.  

9 thoughts on “Management and Ramayana”

  1. Well Well Well what to say,
    A brilliant piece of writing, Analyzing and above all correlating with obvious.

    The post reminds of me my days when i was a student of science (Though i belief a student of Science always remain student of science, but still to be GRAMMATICALLY correct i used was), I also used to draw relations between our religious epics and modern day marvel’s of Science.

    I always belief our Holy Books/Scripture are full of Scientific, Geographical, Civic, Managerial and many more facts, I belief that they are the best source of education, in fact my mind says that whenever they were scripted by our ancestors they were done to educate masses, those who do not had privilege of High Quality Education{Gurukools of Famous Guru’s} and your post just is like icing on Cake.
    Facts and art of living blended with live of God is what these epic store in them, and even a person who has not attended school for a day will follow them, so it is best way of educating People.

    So if anyone who wants to be master of all go for Ramayana, Shri MadBhagvata Gita and Vedas ultimate source of Knowledge

  2. One thing very important which i should have written above.

    Only mindless reading of such Great and deep books will not make any of us wiser but surely will make us some Rattu Pandit
    The real thing is to get into the depth of words to know the real meaning.
    To reveal the wisdom one has to go into the meaning of these scripts.
    and yes SORRY for such big comments

  3. Our ancient scriptures, Ramayan or mahabharata have several examples of application of management principles, focus of target and final achievement of victory. thes principles have been used by management gurus the world over.

  4. Excellent article.
    The ancient Hindu philosophy of keepiing mind and body for the well being, has entered the managerial, medical and judicial domain of the world. Today it has found its place as an alternative to the theory of modern management and also as a means to bring back the right path of peace and prosperity for the human beings. Let me bow to Indian Maharishi Veda Vysa with folded hands who helped in removing the impurities of the mind through his writings on Vedas, impurities of speech through his writings on puranas, and impurities of body through his writings on other sacred texts.

    The Holy Ramayana is the essence of the all sacred texts.,

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