What MMS can learn from MSD!
India's World Cup win could not have come at a better time for a country battling the despondency of myriad scams. After months of gloom, Indians, cutting across religion, caste, community and political affiliation had something unanimous to cheer about.
Dr. Manmohan Singh rightly congratulated captain Dhoni with the words, "India is proud of your leadership". Indeed the entire country is proud of it. However, for Dr. Singh, emulating Dhoni could be the easiest way to make up for some of his own leadership failures.
Here is what Dr. Singh can learn from MSD:
Lesson 1: Shuffle your players
Well, Dhoni did that twice, risking criticism and sticking his neck out. First he included Nehra in the semi-final and then he included Sreesanth in the final. In the process, he had to drop R Ashwin, a popular public choice. However, Dhoni was least bothered about the flak he might have drawn in case of failure.
Contrast this with Dr. Singh retaining A Raja as Telecommunications Minister, post the 2009 LS elections win, despite there being sufficient evidence of impropriety against Raja.
Contrast this once again with Dr. Singh meaning to re-shuffle his cabinet and then developing cold feet at the eleventh hour. You need guts to be a true leader and take unpopular decisions.
Lesson 2: Own up your Mistakes
It was heartening to see Dhoni admit his mistake of having misread the Mohali pitch. Interestingly he did so despite Nehra, the surprise inclusion coming up with a stellar performance. Dhoni had the option of arrogantly justifying himself, instead he chose of be honest.
On the other hand, our supposedly 'honest' PM never ceases to justify his failures. Remember the statement-I'm not as big a culprit as is made out to be or blaming corruption on the compulsions of coalition politics?
Till you are honest in accepting your mistakes Dr. Singh, you can't set them right.
Lesson 3: Lead from the Front
In the WC final against Sri Lanka, Dhoni, promoted himself up the batting order, despite his recent batting failures. That was an excellent example of confronting the enemy head on and leading by example.
Contrast this with Dr. Singh's first reaction of feigning ignorance every time a crisis erupts, be it on the appointment of the CVC or the ISRO scam, despite the involvement of the PMO in both cases. Subsequently the PM even blamed his Minister of State in order to wash his hands off the matter. It goes without saying that these are signs of a poor leader.
MMS would do well to spend sometime pondering over what he can learn from MSD and possibly acquire leadership skills of his own. Then India might have more to celebrate after the WC victory bonhomie gradually settles down.
More about Tuhin A Sinha
Tuhin A. Sinha is an author, scriptwriter and columnist based in Mumbai, India.
Tuhin was born in Jamshedpur. He has studied at Loyola School, Jamshedpur, Hindu college, Delhi and the National Institute of Advertising, New Delhi.
Tuhin is best known for his novels, Of Love And Politics, That Thing Called Love and 22 Yards. That Thing Called Love is now out in several regional languages as well. Tuhin has scripted several TV shows, apart from having worked as story/script/creative consultant with leading Film and TV production houses.
Tuhin is also a guest columnist with TOI, DNA and some lifestyle magazines. A keen observer of national politics, the subject finds its way in many of Tuhin’s writings.
Tuhin is presently working on his fourth book, the Autobiography.
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