Leadership lessons from Goddess Durga!

Navratri is our most exuberant and zesty festival. Goddess Durga is celebrated with an unmatched fervour at this time. She is one of the strongest links that noticeably binds this nation of diverse people their Vrats & Jagrans (fasting and praying in North), Garbas & Dandiyas (celebratory dances in the West), Golus (special decorations in the South) and Pujo pandals (inimitable celebrations in the East).

While the goddess inculcates great devotion in us, her aura, personality, her story and her very being offers us some very profound life lessons that hold a wealth of meaning even for the management world. 6 leadership lessons we learn from Maa (Supreme Mother) Durga are:

1. Fearlessness & Inner Strength: The word Durga, from the root word ‘durgam’ itself, embodies fearlessness. Remaining true to our convictions in the face of each adversity, however, big or small it may be, gives us an unshakeable inner strength. The stronger we are from inside, the more fearless we are perceived on the outside. These three together go a long way in ensuring success in the long run. Goddess Durga rides a tiger – it’s a metaphor showing – A fearless being can go on to tame problems and situations even as fierce as a tiger and come out the winner.

2. Multi-tasking – Durga Maa with her eight hands epitomizes the word ‘multi-tasking.’ Multi-tasking not only saves time, but it also keeps us mentally active and agile. Multi-tasking makes us independent of the vagaries of time and resources.

3. Vision & Equanimity – Notice any idol or statue of Goddess Durga – The most prominent feature that arrests our attention is her beautiful, calm and serene visage which sports big yet watchful eyes. Big eyes are a symbol of having a 360 degree vision so as to know where one needs to reach. But just knowing the destination does not complete the journey. The watchfulness symbolises a constant eye on your journey to your goal.

While watchfulness is desirable, the goddess’ serene visage also cautions to bear equanimity within us. A composed leader-manager can accomplish much more than an agitated one.

4. Adaptability – Goddess Durga comes to us in 9 different avatars (forms) on the 9 days of Navratri. There is a very simple management lesson hidden here. Leader-managers be ready to don a different hat for different situations. Be yourself but adapt your style, tone, stance, manner and involvement as per the situation on hand.

5. Be your own Strong Link – Just how one Goddess Durga binds millions of hearts together in worship and faith – be the glue, the link that binds people together. Unravelers lose their raison d’etre very quickly.

6. Leadership is gender independent – Lastly, but most importantly, remember – When all other powerful Gods failed to stop the unstoppable demon Mahishasura, the supreme being too had to take a form of Goddess Durga to vanquish the unvanquishable. And herein lies the biggest lesson our society and management world can learn – leadership qualities are gender independent!

Happy Navratri! Jai Maa Durga!

This article originally appeared on Economic Times http://bit.ly/2e2QMjf