A man known best as the trouble shooter in the ruling Congress party, Pranab Mukherjee has a prominent place in the government and is often seen as the number two of the government. He is one of the most experienced and senior-most minster in the cabinet who holds many posts beyond the significant Financial Ministry. He takes a professional approach to any problem put before him and his management skills are lauded beyond the nation. Some of the management lessons that can be learned from Pranab Mukherjee are listed below.
Mukherjee has been the most reliable person for the Congress party to approach during a crisis. He has a ready solution in his pocket for the worst of all emergencies and he knows the art of implementing it. This trust has been developed over the years and this is a major leadership skill that young managers should follow. The art is to make your team members come to you or in other words, build the trust among your subordinates who would see you as a real problem solver or a crisis manager. There are many an incident when Mukherjee was tasked to resolve the crisis, the latest being the Anna Hazare movement.
He has on many occasions shown to be harsh on issues that need such a hardliner approach. He shows the art of being hard without making things complicated. Managers at times will have to take certain tough decisions for the best of the organization. At one point, Pranab Mukherjee took a different tune and really hit out at Anna Hazare and Baba Ramdev over the civil society’s anti-corruption movement. He accused that these activists are undermining democratic institutions and went on to call them ‘a handful of self appointed messiahs’. However, it was Pranab Mukherjee who could break the deadlock finally bringing an end to the historic national unrest. Managers need to master this art of being bold while leaving rooms for constructive discussions.
3. Art of Consensus Building
He is a master of negotiation and his ultimate aim is to build consensus for crisis management. The veteran leader has come in terms with the fact that running a government necessitates playing a lot of smart tactics. In a coalition government, mutual consent is the key to survival and there are a few like Pranab Mukherjee who see to that its kept safe. He flew to Chennai when DMK threatened to pull back from the alliance after the arrest of Kanimozhi. With a few rounds of meetings, he fixed the problem and made sure Kanimozhi remains in jail and a DMK minister in the cabinet. Leading a team or an organization, you will often be confronted with conflicting ideas and issues. Consensus building is crucial in such situations as business cannot be run by hasty decisions.
Pranab Mukherjee’s crisis management skills are beyond comparison. He is said to be a great listener and possesses a clear view of how much can be pushed in any negotiation. He was the congress representative during the all-party meeting on the Lokpal bill and his trouble shooting skills were used to the maximum in cases such as the West Bengal seat sharing crisis and Cairn-Vedanta deal etc. Leaders are identified their crisis management skills. It needs great levels of patience and quick decision making qualities. The real challenge of running a business is to spot a crisis in advance and solve it at the earliest.
He is often termed ‘a man of all seasons’ as he has been a part of almost every Congress governments since the mid-1970s, except the Rahul Gandhi government between 1984 and 1989. Moreover, he has held most of the key positions in the cabinet including Defence, External Affairs, Finance, Economic Affairs, Communication, Commerce and Industry, Revenue, Shipping and Transport. It’s this vast experience and qualities that make him stand apart from the rest. If management is a game of cricket, then a manager should be an all-rounder, who can meet the varying requirements of his team.
- Half a victory (thelawfile.wordpress.com)
- Pranab hopes Anna will end fast after Parliament’s appeal – The Hindu (news.google.com)
- Jan Lokpal Bill: Need serious consideration on Anna’s three conditions, says Pranab (thelawfile.wordpress.com)
- Serious security breach at Pranab Mukherjee’s office: Report (bellwort.wordpress.com)
- Civil society leaders behaving like legislators: Pranab (thelawfile.wordpress.com)