Featured Article On The Occasion of Dusshera Festival
A large part of the population worships Rama, across the globe. Looking at the situations he faced in his lifetime and the way things happened to him.
It seems like a continuous series of impediments. He loses the kingdom that is legitimately his and ends up in exile. Then his wife gets kidnapped, and he has to fight a deadly battle even though he does not want to.
Then when he brings his wife back home, he has to suffer criticism about her character from everybody around. So he takes his wife, who was very beloved to him and is pregnant, and abandons her in the forest.
Then he unknowingly ends up in a clash against his children. His life was a series of troubles. With all that, why do so many people worship Rama?
The significance of Rama is not in the circumstances he encountered in his life. But the gracefulness with which he managed himself through this series of tragedies that occurred to him.
He was a being with phenomenal wisdom. Though life became a continuous series of failures, never once did he waver from his integrity, from the fundamentals of life that he set up for himself.
Not only this, Rama demonstrated exemplary leadership skills that are relevant even after seven thousand years.
Vision and bringing different people together for a collective goal are the unique qualities that separate a leader from others. We can have three broad categories of people.
First, who aspires to be a leader. Second, those who think they are a leader, and third those who are leaders. Rama left for exile as Yuvraj, however, returned as the Supreme Man (Maryada Purushottam).
One can be a CEO, Founder, or Owner, but one can grow into a leader only by taking on the journey. The journey of life experiences, challenges, and hurdles.
Let’s reflect on a few qualities exuded by Rama that make him a genuine leader and examples from Ramayana that are a source of motivation for leadership.
The first and foremost characteristic of a leader is the level of patience displayed under compelling situations. Rama left the kingdom and patiently spent his time in the forest with his wife and brother.
He would always perform an action considering the possible outcomes.
Hanuman was very curious from his childhood days onwards. It is this curiosity that drew him towards the sun in an attempt to eat it.
For a leader, it is essential to be curious about the unexplored avenues. As curiosity leads to creativity and, creativity leads to innovation.
Ravana was gallant but not undefeatable. He was even defeated by Bali once. But Rama chose to be with Sugreev, the one who was miserable, and not with Bali, who was powerful but wicked.
Thus, a leader maintains strong values. People remember you by your actions, actions get influenced by behavior, and behavior is an outcome of the Values!
Develops and Nurtures Talent
Rama sent his team to find his beloved wife Sita but did not tell them how. One of the traits of a leader is that he does not make carbon copies.
He lets the team come up with ideas and new ways of doing things. Hanuman went to Lanka, entered the city, sneaked into Ashok Vatika, gave his message to Sita, decided to test the force of the opponents, and gave Rama’s powerful introduction to Ravana and his team. Leaders believe in fostering leadership and trust amongst their teams.
It can be achieved, by providing, the right opportunity at the right time, to the worthy candidate.
Humility, Reward, and Recognition
During the formation of Ram Setu (Adam’s Bridge), Rama observed that a few monkey soldiers were getting irritated with the squirrel. These warriors were very valiant and could easily carry rocks weighing up to 1 ton. However, they were carrying 500kg stones on their shoulders.
On the other hand, the tiny squirrel that could carry only 50gm weight was carrying a stone of 100gm on her back. On seeing this Rama walked up to them and appreciated the little squirrel who worked 200% more than her capacity thus, contributing more than the mighty soldiers.
A true leader emanates humility and recognizes even a minute contribution made by employees at the lowest level of the hierarchy.
Promotes a Culture of Learning
After defeating Ravana, Rama sent Laxman to him to receive a teaching. Where Ravana shared his life lessons with Laxman. Learning from experiences is good.
But it is best to learn from everyone and everything. An ingenious leader always motivates his team to develop new skills and promotes an environment for constant learning.
So people worship Rama not because of the victory in his life but for the gracefulness with which he handled the most challenging circumstances. That is what is valued and is the fundamental basis of creating an ideal leader.