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Leading with Grit: Succeed or Learn to Succeed Later

Leaders as a Role Model

"If I ever fail to perform the prescribed duties carefully, O Partha, all people would follow my path always (thinking that would be the right way thus ruining the world and I don’t want to be the reason for that to happen)." Bhagavad Gita 3.23

Great message here for the leaders to act as the ROLE MODELS. Let us look at another interesting lesson from Bhagavad Gita. This sloka looks like philosophical on the face of it but an interesting message for all of us.

Leading with Grit: Succeed or Learn to Succeed Later

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Fear of Failure

"(If you fight) you will either be slain in the battlefield and go to the celestial abodes (as a shatriya dying in battlefield), or you will gain victory and enjoy the kingdom. Therefore, arise with determination, O son of Kunti, and be prepared to fight with determination."

Swargam and kingdom are used as metaphors here. This is a very valuable indirect message from Lord Krishna not to start any task with the Fear of Failure. Start any initiative with a strong determination and conviction that the initiative will succeed and it will succeed. Success probability will come down significantly even if you have an iota of doubt. Best option is to start with the thinking 'I will succeed to realize the intended benefits or learn to succeed in the next attempt'. Failure is not in the vocabulary. Antonym of success is 'Learning to succeed in the next attempt'.

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Every Failure, Every Loss is a Learning Opportunity

Giving up is the true sin. Life is one big adventure, and nobody can guarantee success all the time. Taking responsibility for one’s life, living up to one’s potential and extending the envelope of experiences is the way to earn good Karma – just sitting by the side lines, doing nothing, refusing to take any responsibility is a sure shot way to incur sin.

Sin is in not discharging ordained responsibility for the 'fear of failure' or in 'giving up in failure'.

Would this mean blindly jumping to an initiative without analysing the 'probability of failure'. Not at all. Any action can be taken only if there is 'Realizable Benefits' from the action which depends on 'probability of success (or failure)' and 'benefits on success' and 'consequence of failure'. But once a decision is taken to 'take the plunge', there is no place for 'probability of failure'. It is 0% for all the initiatives once the plunge is taken.

Not only at the time of starting the initiative, but this also helps in taking up failures in right perspective. Criticize your team for not taking up required actions but never demean your team for their failures. Cheer them up that it is a great learning for the next attempt.

Bid for new projects with the strong belief that you get the project if you win and the time and money spent is an useful learning for the next bid if you end up not winning the project.

I follow this principle religiously and I benefit immensely from this.

Discussion on success and failure, gain and loss, happiness and misery will continue in the next blog from the very next Gita sloka.

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Jaganathan T
Featured Uplyrn Expert
Jaganathan T
CiO Klub - President of Chennai Chapter, Managing Trustee - FutureCalls Charitable Trust, Author, Exemplar Global Certified ISMS Lead Auditor
Subjects of Expertise: Technology, Cyber Security, Management Development
Featured Uplyrn Expert
Jaganathan T
CiO Klub - President of Chennai Chapter
Managing Trustee - FutureCalls Charitable Trust
Author
Exemplar Global Certified ISMS Lead Auditor

Subjects of Expertise

Technology
Cyber Security
Management Development

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