Experience – Your Worst Enemy

I have had the privilege of listening to Sadhguru Jaggi Vasudeva a few times in small groups where dialogue and interactions are easier than in large gatherings. To me, his philosophy is informed by empiricism, scientific learning, objective thought, and interestingly, subjective reflections. His discourse resonates with me.

In his recent lecture titled Insight – of Crisis and Leadership at LBS this week, he talked about a need for leadership to move from personal ambition to vision; the former a drive for ‘more of everything and anything’ and latter a need that ‘encompasses all’. I think that frames his discourse very well. In his view, modern education including B schools training focuses on skills and ‘external’ capabilities while neglecting to address the ‘inner workings’ of the human mind and body. Today, the biggest challenge facing businesses is expanding and scaling up. Most people are not geared to deal with change in situations and circumstances. They need both external and internal tools to move on.

According to him, today’s top business leaders are poor poster boys for ‘success’. Success, the most coveted of all things, should bring happiness and a sense of joy. Instead, it is a contradiction when one looks at the stressed, anxious and at-war (with government and society) business leaders. Success is turning into ‘Not Aspirational’.

According to the Sadhguru, experience and pre-planned strategies can come unstuck if applied to new crises and situations. Experience can be your biggest enemy. In India, we have venerated that for long. It does not seem to be working for us. Maybe, it is time to take the risk of inexperienced younger generations leading us into a better future.

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