If You Want To Be Happy, Practice Compassion; If You Want Others To Be Happy, Practice Compassion, Dalai Lama

MDI Gurgaon and The Tibet house organized a fishbowl discussion with top business Leaders for developing framework for the compassionate corporation

Indian corporations are suffering from workplace stress and bad health and a compassionate approach towards workforce are urgently required. It is a well-known fact and is further supported by the latest surveys, which state that nearly half of the employees suffer from some kind of stress-related diseases, according to the findings of the survey by Optum and reported in economic times dated June 26, 2018, conducted among 800,000 employees in 70 large companies, each with a minimum workforce of 4,500. The proportion of workers at high risk of suicide due to unmanageable stress has grown to 8% in 2018 from 2-4% two years ago.  

In a survey of leaders of major global organizations by Rasmus Hougaard, MD , Project potential,  91% said compassion is very important for leadership and 80% would like to enhance their compassion but do not know how! 

Realizing the need to study this particular phenomenon and in order to find out common solution, MDI Gurgaon in association with Tibet House invited business leaders and management fraternity to come together and deliberate on  a framework and measures for compassion based management of resources on “Compassionate Corporations: Business Leaders’ Dialogue” on 11 September 2018.  In line with the vision of MDI Gurgaon, to be a school for ‘Thought Leaders and Change Masters’, this thought leadership initiative was an attempt to start a dialogue between industry and academia on building a shared understanding of the framework for compassion at the workplace.

As HH Dalai Lama says, if you want to be happy, practice compassion; if you want others to be happy, practice compassion. 

Compassion is relational by nature and thus embodied through interpersonal connections with other human beings. Being compassionate at the workplace may mean seeing our work not only as a 'job', but as a calling to help and serve others, or looking at how our work impacts those around us. Leaders’ persuasion and inspiration involving appropriate emotional elements such as compassion turn out to be more effective than a rational approach towards managing her/ his employees. It has been seen that Corporate is not only giving immense attention towards this problem of but are also revising and formulating HR Policies in a tailored manner to manage stress and discomfort level of the working force but current intervention for employee happiness are not adequate and a more compassionate approach is the need of the hour. 

The esteemed gathering was welcomed by Dr. Himadri Das, Director MDI Gurgaon. 

Prof. Tanuja Sharma, Event Convener, MDI Gurgaon elucidated “the alarming numbers of depressions, increasing percentage of stress-related bad health cases and increasing percentage of suicide cases provoked us to bring together like-minded people to deliberate upon this topic and to come up with an effective resolution”.

Padma Bhushan Mr. Muthuraman, Ex-Vice Chairman, Tata Steel, said ‘Corporations won’t be compassionate unless it is bringing in profitability and sustainability. The main issues are the forces which go against compassion. We should know what to communicate and how to link it up with pillars of benefits and success”. Speaking on the occasion Ven. Geshe Dorji Damdul, Director, Tibet House said. “We need to bring compassion as a universal code into the education system. Since the early days, one should begin taking care of not only the mind but also of the heart. The agenda is to grow and not suffer”.

In this time of environmental crisis and social schisms, it is time that businesses take cognizance of compassion at workplace not only in terms of formulating processes and practices to enhance it but also in changing the mindset which impacts dealings/transactions. Organizations should focus on creating a leadership model that promotes care and kindness to employees aiming at releasing stress for higher productivity. 

The dialogue was moderated by Mr. G. Ravindran, Chair Professor, TISS-Leadership. next, 

The event was a collaborative effort and was conceptualized and organized by a group of faculty and students of MDI, Gurgaon and two external members, Mr. G. Ravindran, Chair Professor,, and Dr. Sunita Chugh, founder, ‘On the Last mile’.

The Thought Leaders who were present at the dialogue forum were Mr. Muthuraman, Ex-Vice Chairman, Tata Steel; Mr.Lakshminarayanan,Chairman of board, WEBCO (India) Ltd..Mr. Vinod Sharma, Managing Director, Deki Electronics; Vivek Mehra, CEO and MD, Sage Publishing; Ms. Ananya Birla, Mr. Manmohan Tiwana, MD and CEO, Wodehouse Capital Ashutosh Khanna, Kornferry, Mr. Prabal Chakraborty, Boston Scientific, Ms. Anchal Jain, Co-Chair CCBP, IIM-A; ; Mr. Birender Ahluwalia, Founder and CEO, Positivity Company; Mr. Chendil Nathan T Vijay, Head of SDC LoB Solutions, SEA Nearshore Center; Mr. Kamlesh Vyas, Partner Deloitte; Mr. Deepak Srivastava, CEO, Parrot Solutions; Ms. Kanupriya Verma, COO, Curocarte India;; Mr. Marut Bhardwaj, Country Director, Potential Project India, Ms. Paroma Roy Chowdhury, VP, SoftBank Group Intl. Director, Asia Communications; Ms. Pooja Pathak, Director, Media Mantra (PR),; Satya Narayan, Chairman and Founder, Career Launcher; Mr. Suhas Tuljapurkar, Managing Partner, Legasis Services;; Mr. Nitin Dua and Ms. Nipun Mehta.Nagarro.

Internation speakers who sent their video address on why companies should be compassionate include Prof. Dave Ulrich, University of Michigan, Dr. Rasmus Hougaard, MD, Potential Project, and Ds. Meysam Poorkavoos, Senior Research, Roffey Park Institute.UK. 

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