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IIM Indore Students Learn the Secret Art of Managing the Self and the Organization
Students of the EPGP at IIM Indore, the only One Year Full Time Post Graduate Programme in Management in India to have a course on Ancient Oriental Philosophy and Spirituality, recently learnt the secret art of managing the self and the organization from Swami Samarpanananda of Sri Ramakrishna Mission Vivekananda University (Belur Math).
It was mélange of spirituality and business at IIM Indore. Swami Samarpanananda of Sri Ramakrishna Mission Vivekananda University (Belur Math) gave the future business leaders of the One Year Full-time Executive Post Graduate Programme in Management (EPGP), lessons in how to develop and channelize their spiritual and mental energies to achieve excellence in the field of business management. Coming at a time when companies are drawing flak for chasing money with complete disregard for society, these lessons promise to help the EPGP students not only become good managers, but responsible corporate citizens too.
Swami Samarpanananda Addressing the Students at IIM, Indore
Swamiji Samarpanananda, who has been involved with teaching and administration for many years now and who has recently authored 'Tiya: A Parrot's Journey Home', an imaginative rendering of Vedantic and Yoga philosophy, gave a discourse to the EPGP students at IIM Indore. Swamiji covered many important topics, for instance, the importance of detachment in life. To students who found it difficult to reconcile their future in well paying jobs with a life of detachment as proposed in one lecture, Swamiji explained, "The purpose of your life is not to become a monk. It is to attain success and develop yourself to the highest level possible. So if tomorrow you get a chance to buy a Rolls Royce, do so by all means. But understand that it's only a means to a higher end - to raise yourself to the supreme expression of yourself. In this process do not get attached to the ladder - the car in this case as that leads to misery. Keep your eyes set on the higher goal."
Swamiji very beautifully drew on examples from religions as diverse as Hinduism and Sikhism to Christianity and Islam to show that the message of all religions is essentially the same and is as relevant today as when it was first codified. He showed the students how learning from these books can be a guide to all of us today in our work places.
Picking the example of Arjun from The Gita, who is horrified at the prospect of facing his loved ones in battle, Swamiji showed how the students might face a similar situation when it comes to a non-performing employee.
He explained that just as Arjuna was cajoled by Krishna to keep his duty as supreme, so must the students be guided by Dharma - and that in the workplace is to get the job done well. "At such occasions do not be beset by weakness" said Swamiji. At the same time he explained the students the virtue of compassion and suggested ways to reduce the pain caused in such situations.
Swamiji also explained to the students that they must learn to look at stress in a new way. "Stress is a reality in the jobs you aspire to, but you are going to be compensated well exactly because you have the capability to handle such positions. It's a package deal" he said. At this occasion, Prof. Shubhabrata Basu, Chairperson, EPGP, said "A first of its kind initiative in this part of the globe, this course on spirituality and oriental management practices for the EPGP students, fits in well with the EPGP's mandate to provide the students with exposure to new perspectives, contemporary theories and approaches in management. To this end, one should be open to draw and assimilate the best of both the oriental and the occidental worlds."
The EPGP is the One Year Full Time Post Graduate Programme in Management at IIM Indore and targets middle to senior level managers looking to propel their career to the next level. Specially designed to enhance knowledge, skills, attitude and capabilities essential for managing and leading organizations, the programme combines exploration and exposition of good management practices. Entry to the prestigious course is through GMAT with a minimum of five years of work experience. Thus the focused discourse on oriental philosophy and management practices is expected to add significant differentiated value to this elite group of participants.