How relevant are the Strategic Management lessons of Mahabharata in the 21st Century? – An Intro

Prof. Tanushree Datta, Assistant Professor & Assistant Director – Placement, IQ City United World School of Business, Kolkata


 The 90s kids would still remember this intro song from B R Chopra’s mythological series produced and directed by B R Chopra. The Mahabharata provides fascinating tutorials on strategic management and helps in the formation of blueprint to handle unresolved situations as per the burning need. Considering that we are in the 21st century, the ultimate reason behind Mahabharata would be a battle for Land.  Hastinapur, being the principal cause of war between the Pandavas and Kauravas. It is established that Pandavas won the battle of Mahabharata, and conquered the nemesis who was even powerful than them if considered from the viewpoint of material reserves. When the rival behind them was evidently stronger, the victory of the Pandavas was the game of sagacity and tactics. Fitting and vital strategies were devised from their side that lead them towards success. Though the line between success and failure seems to be very thin when we hear the grief stricken mother – Draupadi. Coming to the main point, the greatest and invincible Impresario, the resolute backbone was Lord Shri Krishna who piloted the Pandavas at each footfall by doing strategic scheming. Undoubtedly, Mahabharata inculcate passion, team spirit, leadership and time management. The 7 divisions of the Pandava army had a decisive victory against the 11 Kaurava army. This was possible because Arjuna had already formed alliance with kingdoms all over ancient India. This was the strategy of Krishna to send Arjuna to tour ancient India and form association of camaraderie. The story of Mahabharata revolves around two branches of a family: The Pandavas and Kaurvas; who fought in Kurukshetra for the kingdom of Hastinapura. The whole story of that time was narrated with one lakh verses compiled in eighteen sections in a manuscript entitled as “Mahabharata”. With eighteen days of war ending as the major catastrophe, the five Pandava brothers won the war. At the beginning of the war, Arjuna was filled with anxiety and uneasiness; confusion and moral predicament. What was Krishna’s elaboration to transform him to a dire warrior! Let us see in the next piece!