Open Spring of Ideas List

Multiple Strands Of Knowledge And Skills - Crucial For Entrepreneurial Success

You might have heard about the Panchatantra story about a father and his five sons. He was concerned about the unity of his sons after he passed away. Therefore he wanted to give them a message at a young age.

He took a few cane sticks. He called the physically weakest of the son and gave him a stick and asked him to break it. He did it fairly easily. Then he called the next weak son and gave a set of two sticks tied to each other well with threads and told him to break them holding two of them together. With some effort he broke both of them. Then the turn of three strong sons. One got three together. With considerable effort, he broke all three of them. Another one much stronger struggled with the four stick combination and finally succeeded in breaking them. The strongest of them, real pahelwan, was given the five sticks tied together. He mustered all his strengths and skills to bend, twist etc. He did not succeed and gave up.

The father asked them what did they learn ?

They, after some thought, said 'If sticks are alone in one or two, they can be broken even by the weak persons but if more of them are together, it is difficult to break even with the strongest person.'

Father was happy. He said 'My sons. This is a life lesson for you five. If all five oaf you are together, no power on earth can damage you. If you try to avoid each other for exhibiting such a unity, other will exploit you !'

What he said, is true even now. I used to tell my TIFAC colleagues often this story and request them to combine their knowledge pool. This is true of entrepreneurs as well. Many entrepreneurs (especially in India, others have learnt the lessons) fail because each one tries to do a solo - one with technology thinks he is the master; finance person thinks others are fools; marketing person thinks he alone is important; each try to hide from each other or ignore other areas.

Remember this for the success of an enterprise : Products or services from your enterprises require Threads from different disciplines : knowledge of markets; overall economics; aesthetics; technology; engineering; accounting and finance; knowledge of relevant laws; skill sets of the workers and staff; personnel management skills; etc.

Many such THREADS of knowledge and skill sets are to combined and joined with the RESIN of entrepreneurial goals. Then imagine the strengths of such a COMPOSITE strands. (You know that modern advanced composites are made of fragile glass fibres or carbon strands or natural fibres etc... all weak alone. But with resin and joining under pressure, they are very very strong.)

So if you want your enterprise to be successful and strong, be ready to be a part of multiple strands.