Startup lessons from Vijayadasami

Vijayadasami Dushera Dasara

In India Vijayadasami and Dushera are celebrated across the country. This marks the 10th day of war after which the Victory was achieved (Lord Ram vanquished Ravana / Goddess Durga vanquished Mahishasura)

I was looking at the mythology surrounding the event, especially the Vijayadasami – What does Vijayadasami mean to startups?

  • A new start, a new perspective: In India, Vijayadasami is a very auspicious day to start any activity. The demigods / devas were given a fresh lease of life after Goddess Durga won over the evil overlord Mahishasura. Vijayadasami offers us an opportunity to look back, measure and start afresh. It is never too late to start a good thing! It is an ideal day to take new decisions, launch new activities.
  • Victory is not available in a day: Despite being the most powerful Goddess as Durga or being infinitely skilled and divine like Lord Ram, victory was not instant. Plans had to be made, hardwork put in, ordeals faced before final victory! So, however talented the team is, it takes a lot of hardwork, ups and downs before the sweet victory.
  • The power of vrath / discipline: The Sanskrit word vrath is wrongly associated only with fasting. It could mean any vow / oath which requires discipline / austerities. People take up various vows during the Navratri period till Vijayadasami. In startups, perseverance, hardwork and commitment succeed better than an occasional flash of brilliance.
  • Female power! The evil overlord Mahishasura had a boon that he cannot be killed by any male power. He did not expect females to harm him. So, when no one could control him, all the Gods gave out their power, and the sum of all the powers took up a feminine form, which was more powerful than the sum of the parts. Goddess Durga finally vanquished Mahishasura. There is a growing amount of literature on having gender equality in startups. Tom Peters, a famous management thought leader expresses this in many of his articles and books. There was even a twitter war between Vivek Wadhwa (Stanford, Singularity University) and Dick Costolo (CEO, Twitter) on Vivek pointing out that there was no female representation in Twitter’s BoD. Startups need to make sure that they have enough female power in their teams and not act with bias!
  •  Goodness prevails: The victory of Lord Ram over Ravana and Goddess Durga over Mahishasura shows us that goodness always prevails, if the intent and cause of what you are doing is good and impactful, you will prevail.

And for everyone the sheer festivity in the air at this time corroborates that life is full of festivities, its up to us to enjoy, appreciate and look at positivity surrounding us.

What does Dushera mean to you? Look forward to your thoughts!