franchising aspects 2016-08-25

5 management lessons from Lord Krishna for franchisors

In many ways, Lord Krishna's advice to Arjuna and his preachings in the Bhagvad Gita are significant for franchisors.

5 management lessons from Lord Krishna for franchisors

As I was flipping digital newspapers on my smartphone while heading to work, it was great to see greetings from Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Pranab Mukherjee to mark the occasion of Janmashtami, the annual birth anniversary celebration of Hindu deity Lord Krishna today.

In an interesting read, President Mukherjee mentioned about Lord Krishna's life and teachings emphasising the importance of performing one's duty without the thought of reward.

He said, "Lord Krishna's life and teachings emphasise the importance of performing one's duty without the thought of reward, of different paths leading to the same goal and of the importance of ethical and moral values to society.”

The hard hitting words led me think of the way franchisors play a pivotal role in shaping the lives of franchisees in the world of business and management. Thus, here is a list of management lessons every franchisor must learn from the preachings of Lord Krishna in Bhagvad Gita.

1. Exploitation of resources available

Firstly, every franchisor must learn to smartly choose and utilise optimally available scarce resources to make their venture a successful one. How? If you may recall the Mahabharata chapter when Duryodhan from Kauravas and Arjuna from Pandavas went to Lord Krishna at the same time, seeking his support in the battle ground, Duryodhana chose large army of the Lord while Arjuna requested for his support in the form his wisdom only. As Duryodhana got assurance from the deity to strengthen him and confidently left, Lord Krishna asked Arjuna why he chose Wisdom over Power, on which, Arjuna answered strength does ensure win but knowledge does. Now, evidently, here is a lesson for the franchisors that if they have strong wisdom to bag lasting profit, they can surpass any hiccups easily.

2. Visionary perspective to work

In yet another incident, in the battlefield, when Arjuna got emotional over killing his own cousins and other relatives, Lord Krishna preached him to focus on his Karma which means work. Thus, it is advisable to every franchisor to focus on their work without anticipating about the outcome of it. Being genetically designed to over think about result, we tend to get swayed by vision for success. Often franchisors miss out on enjoying and learning the visionary perspectives lying in the process of reaching the goal. And, when the same situation arises, they miss out on turning it beneficial or overcoming the challenge seamlessly. Thus, the best means for effective work performance is to become the work itself. Attaining this state of nishkama karma is the right attitude to work because it prevents the ego, the mind from dissipation through speculation on future gains or losses.

Thereby, always remember, the art lies in walking the tightrope and enjoying it. If the franchisor walks, the literal tightrope is ignorant or too excited, he may certainly fall. The trick to his success is focus on Karma more than the outcome.

3. Commitment is utmost essential

In the popular verse of Bhagvad Gita, Lord Krishna advised Arjuna to pay attention towards his commitment to win the battle. For that, even though he has to shed blood of his relatives or cousins, he must do it and there is nothing wrong with it. Similarly, a franchisor should be committed to offer the best possible support to his franchisee, give them quality services and support them with every possible resources - be it Manpower, products/services or even guidance. Bhagvad Gita also suggests us not to mortgage the present commitment to an uncertain future. Hence, if the franchisors are not able to measure up to this height, then surely the fault lies with them and not with the teaching.

4. Detach from avarice of selfish gains

Lord Krishna preached Arjuna while advising detachment from the avarice of selfish gains by discharging one's accepted duty, does not absolve anybody of the consequences arising from discharge of his responsibilities. This is a brilliant guide to the operating franchisors to keep in mind while customising the terms of their franchise. Franchising is not a Me business, but it’s Our business and keeping in mind the benefits of franchisee will only bring their loyalty and efforts. Moreover, detachment is a must because it is the Ego which spoils the work. So detach yourself from the ego and focus on team effort and support to reap future benefits.

5. The ultimate preaching for franchisors

The despondent position of Arjuna in the first chapter of Bhagvad Gita is a typical human situation which may come in the life of all men of action at some point of time. Lord Krishna by sheer power of his inspirational words raised the level of Arjuna's mind from the state of inertia to the state of righteous action, from the state of faithlessness to the state of faith and self-confidence in the ultimate victory of ethical action. They are the powerful words of courage of strength, of self confidence, of faith in one's own infinite power, of the glory, of valour in the life of active people and of the need for intense calmness in the midst of intense action.

The Bhagvad Gita is full of advice on the theory of cause and effect, making the doer responsible for the consequences of his deeds. That’s why, when the entire nation celebrates birth anniversary celebrations of Lord Krishna with great vigour, the franchisees, franchisors and even aspiring entrepreneurs from diverse trades must keep on reverberating these management lessons in their professional lives to maintain a healthy work life balance and retain loyal clients and franchise partners.

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