Book Review – Business Sutra by Devdutt Pattanaik
Indian mythology is a subject that has always appealed to me. Introduced to the fantasy tales from Ramayan, Mahabharata, Jataka, Puranas or Vedas, translated to Bengali by Leela Majumder or Upendra Kishore Roy Chowdhury, at an early age, and then moving on to reading them in Sanskrit or English, the mythical world of Devas, Asuras, Apsaras, Rishi and munis never failed to amaze me. What was lost in these narratives was the inherent message in the tales. While most authors dwell on the surface, rarely has anyone taken a plunge into the depth of the words, trying to enlighten Indians with the rich heritage of wisdom carried by the mythical tales. Devdutt Pattanaik falls in the latter category, and enjoys a high position in the list of my favourite writers.
The fixation of Indians with management is a topic for extensive research. Every year the number of aspirants for top management institutes in India just goes up manifold. And the lucky ones who emerge from these business schools join elite companies and join the mad world of rat race and corporate survival. Despite rich heritage and cultural past, India currently relies heavily on Western concepts to run not only the state but businesses at grassroots level as well. But if we delve a little into the sea of treasure of our folk-lore or mythology, we would be able to create a build a business model that will not only be successful but will be consistently growing. Integration of Indian theology and management – this forms the crux of Devdutt Pattanaik’s latest offering to book lovers.
“Mythology is the map of the mind. Management is the expression of the mind.”
says the author at one point in the book. Elucidating his point with simple examples borrowed from the tales of Mahabharat, Ramayan, Puran or Buddhist as well as Jain mythology, Pattanaik makes his subject not only interesting, but appealing as well. With pictorial depictions of concepts and corollaries drawn in the modern corporate environments, the author easily makes the reader see how relevant our “archaic texts” still are.
I am reminded of a post by me on Facebook a few days ago – “Who said bonded labour has been abolished? Corporate sector is nothing but slavery….” Reading Devdutt’s book reinforced my notion. Businesses, in an urge to multiply profits, overlook and often neglect employee satisfaction – leading to high attrition. Ultimately business suffers. Throughout the book, Pattanaik beautifully explains the follies in the current system, without being overbearing or painstakingly monotonous (which most business school textbooks are). Breaking up the whole text into Three Parts and several sub-sections, not Pattanaik lucidly puts his point across, without using jargons and tongue-twister terms.
Business Sutra – A Very Indian Approach to Management is definitely a book i would want to keep in the “elite” row of my book shelf. It would be interesting to know what Pattanaik plans as the next treat for his readers.
My Rating – 4/5 stars
P.S. I wish to apologise to Blogadda for the delay in publishing of the post. Due to ill-health and career health, the book had completely slipped off my mind. I will ensure this experience is never repeated.
DISCLAIMER: Images Used In This Blog Post Have Their Respective Copyrights.