Following are the few basic principles of Indian ethos management:
- Immense potential, energy and talents for perfection, as a human being has the spirit within his heart.
- Holistic approach indicating unity between the Divine (the Divine means perfection in knowledge, wisdom and power), individual self and the universe.
- Subtle, intangible subject and gross tangible objects are equally important. One must develop one’s third eye, Jnana Chakshu, the eye of wisdom, visions, insight and foresight.
- Inner resources are much more powerful than outer resources. Divine virtues are inner resources. Capital, materials and plant and machinery are outer resources.
- Karma yoga (selfless work) offers double benefits, private benefit in the form of self-purification and public benefit.
- Yogah karmasu kaushalam, which means excellence at work through self motivation and self development with devotion and without attachment.
- Cooperation is a powerful instrument for team work and success in any enterprise involving collective work.
Three elements of Indian ethos are as follows:
- Focus on the permanent: In real life fashions change, concepts change, situations change, environments change, however, certain things do not change. These are the values of the good, truth and beautiful. The recent experience in the 90s and the early part of this century shows, that the world is re-discovering the principle of ‘honesty is the best policy’. After all, honesty is linked to truth and that is the first principle which perhaps underlines human existence.
In these days, the operational word for integrity is corporate governance. Corporate governance has two elements. Transparency, which helps to fix accountability, which in turn highlights that accountability, is for the shareholders and stakeholders. Transparency and accountability are nothing but exercises in integrity and ensuring that clever financial engineering or window dressing do not mislead the investing public. If there is a crisis today, whether in the Indian capital market or the U.S. market, it is the crisis of confidence of the investors in the business enterprises. It is therefore found that one of the central elements of Indian ethos, namely, the focus on truth and integrity is also eminently relevant in the business context.
- Quest for Perfection: It has been immortalised in the shloka:
“Om poornamada poornamidam poornathpurana mudachyate
poornasya poornamadaya poornameva vashistate”
Out of perfection comes perfection. This quest for perfection ultimately, is the quest for quality. When it comes to quality, the concepts like total quality management, etc., have only once again underlined this principle of the fact that quality products and services cannot come out of an organisation unless the principle of quality pervades every function of that organisation. This all pervasive quality is also reflected in the shloka of Vallabhacharya, who found that every aspect of Lord Krishna was beautiful:
“Adharam madhuram vadhanam madhuram
Nayanam madhuram hasitam madhuram
Hridayam madhuram gamanam madhuram
Madhurathipathe akhilam madhuram”
All pervasive sense of sweetness and elegance is not only the reflection of quality but also of excellence. In any management today, this ultimate focus on excellence can never be lost. Thus, it is found that this aspect of Indian ethos is also not only relevant to India but globally.
- Joy in Performing One’s Function: It was Deming who said that ’quality’ is the pride, which an artisan takes in his craft. It is the pride which an artist takes in his art. If one is enjoying what one is doing, automatically, he is bound to do extremely well; and while excellence becomes a by-product or a spin of the benefit of happiness, it also leads to success. After all, every excellent organisation has excellent morale.
Excellence, in terms of enjoyment through doing is the third aspect of Indian ethos. It is found that this aspect is not only restricted to India, but is universally applicable.