Workplace Takeaways from Duryodhan

Duryodhan is a classic case of what all can go wrong if you happen to rub off the wrong people. BTW Duryodhan means “Difficult to conquer ” and not something mean as one is made to believe. Duryodhan had everything going for him – great friends, great kingdom , family , a great team – filled with “stars” the best warriors were on his side.

Besides he himself was a great friend, who stood by his friends however lowly.A good King to his subjects.

Yet a couple of things didnt go well which ruined his “Career” as a king

A. Enemies. Now having enemies is a good thing. I strongly believe everyone should have a fair share of enemies – just enough to keep you on your toes. Or else complacency sets in.

But, then one needs to show  a little restraint a certain conservative approach when making enemies. You can definitely choose enemies who are slightly stronger than you. Give yourself a fair chance to beat them on your day. But, selecting the Superboss’s nephew might be stretching a bit.

I feel Duryodhan erred here. Offcourse,  he had every thing going to make mince meat of the entire Pandava clan. But then he deeply discounted Krishna. Krishna single handedly turned the War in the Pandavas favour. You cant expect to win against the Deity. Can you?

Big mistake.

Now that is someone you dont mess around with.

Moral, choose your enemies. The Pressures at Work are sure to throw up enemies.Enemies are nothing but opponents. Colleagues who are gunning for the same milestone. When you are making a dash for the end goal and rubbing a few of your opponents is inevitable.

Caution! Step back and retook. Is that guy who gets on your nerves, worth rubbing off. Is it better of Compromising with him. Save your Goal Experience for a later date or maybe even consider sharing the honors with him.

Now here I would like to bring in the perspective of the Film Industry – Indian Western whatever – where the Hero is always the last man standing however big or mean his anti might be. Real life is different. I think you know it.

the Other aspect of Duryodans Downfall could be what is generally considered his strength. His Team of “stars”.

You see, “stars” have their own Agenda. They have their own standards to live by. Take for instance Karan – his Right hand man. a great Warrior. the best on Land.  A lot counted on his taking out Arjuna – his equal on the battle field.

But, he went about giving promises to his Mom that he would’nt do so, in fact he displayed a very selfish approach in that he jeopardized his friends’  Victory. The very friend who had given him the status of a General of the Army. He has displayed exceptional high values and courage , no doubt but, he effectively sealed it for Kauravas.

I digress.

We  were talking about stars and how sometimes they backfire if everything depends on them. Consider your technical skills. They are your Stars. You are in your current position because of them. They Could be anything, Project Management, Supply chain, Lean six sigma, Copy righting, . Excellent. They are your “Stars”.

It makes sense to pad your”Stars” with some soft skills.  For whatever reason if your stars fail or do not perform – you will lose your raison de etre. The soft skills will give you the ability to maneuver out of these situations..These skills include Networking ( very important), inter personal, listening skills etc that helps you relate better with  your ecosystem. Too much dependence on 1 or 2 skills can get you into a corner.

Consider the equations in the Mahbharath – Duryodan’s team were the out and out favourites, thanks to their exceptional abilities at war. But, it was Krishna’s softskills and ability to Think on his feet which tilted the scales in the favour of Pandavas. His subtle pre-war maneuvers nullified Karan and during the War he took out Drona with an equally brilliant move.

So, go all out on your Tech skills but, do not ignore the soft ones. In a highly complicated environment which is the office – your soft skills will help you to Live to Fight another Day..

Credits to the Satya Samhita

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