Lessons in Leadership from World Literature

Last weekend I happened to attend an extremely interesting 2 day workshop titled "Lessons in Leaderhip from World Literature".  It was really insightful as I was exposed to the history of world literature and how the world evolved over the last 20,000 years. Pretty cool huh? So here are a few takeaways from the session that stuck to me.

1) The world history can be divided into 3 waves - Agrarian wave( 20,000 years) followed by the Industrial wave (200 years) and then the Technological wave (60 years). But the catch is this transition is for the western developed economies. Hence although they have moved on to the technological wave, India as a nation is still in the agrarian wave (with 70% of our population involved in agriculture and living in rural areas).

2) We got an insight into the Indian world view and the Western World view and their differences. While Indian world view is still a reflection of the agrarian wave, the Western world view has evolved to encompass the technological wave. Hence following are the differences in our world views

Indian Wold View                                      Western World View
Fatalistic                                                   Initiative Orientation
Scarcity of reources                                Abundance of Resources
Collectivism to deal with scarcity         Individualism
Conflict Avoidance                                  Confrontative
Relationship Oriented                            Task Oriented
Indirect Communication                        Direct Communication
Hierarchical                                              Flat
Cyclical concept of time                          Linear time
Low Uncertainty Avoidance                  Medium Uncertainty Avoidance
Feminine (quality of life, relations)       Masculine ( success, dominance)

3) Understood the concept of Kama Bandhan - Lust, Greed and Rage and Rina Bandhan (last life balance sheet) and how they interplay to determine the composition of our present life.
4) Got a real fresh perspective into literary epics - Ramayana, Odyssey, Oedipus Rex, AbhigyanaShakuntalam, Julius Caesar, Francis Bacon essays and Don Quixote. We delved deeper into these epics and realized that the protagonists in these epics behaved totally as per their World view and all their actions can be explained rationally. 

The professor also drew excellent parallels of Western epics with Hindu Mythology and our ancient texts. I know its pretty hard to explain. I really have to write a long essay to describe everything.

It was not easy, to wake up early morning on Saturday and Sunday but it was worth every second. Some of the ideas were provocative and I really thought thats interesting. I have heard about Ramayan but this is the first time I am thinking in this fashion.

Ok sorry for writitng  pretty boring blog. I know I did not do justice to the concept and some of the things are really so abstract that it cannot be explained. The professor also gave us a reading list of 200 odd books to read before we die and I intend to start on that pretty soon.  Ohh and I promise to write a far more intersting blog next time. Ciao



12:24 AM

Interesting one...


1:02 AM

I did not feel, I had done justice...Its good you liked it...Thanks

  Kajal Das

11:36 PM

Very thoughtful! It's gives me feel of Indian Corporate houses' view Vs MNC's view


11:40 PM

Thanks Kajal Da,

I think the Indian World view is incorporated in each of us and hence into the DNA of the India MNCs. We need to strike a perfect balance between the views to ensure lasting success.