Introduction A strong character is a very infectious thing. Contrary to all public perception, family members are hooked to all the salient points about such people who have strong characters. In fact, the resulting effect can be seen in maids, electricians, plumbers and such other common people with whom the family gets to interact with. They carry the good message and the good acts to hundreds or thousands in the society and the much larger experience becomes a joy for everyone at any point in time.
Be that as it may, a very strong Character a) Leads to Emergence of good Role Models b) Infuses Optimism and Strength in team members c) Makes the family the focus of all good things d) Helps demolish the bad practices to a large extent and e) Makes the youth have Icons to learn lessons from.
Leads to emergence of good role models Role Models are those who make others follow them. Honesty, integrity and a very strong sense of service to the wider society makes everyone look up to such role models for inspiration. They become nerve centers for constructive action too. They infuse thought patterns that get converted into the action of a tall order.
Till this date, the giant IT global company called Infosys Technologies and it's founder Chairman till recently, Shri Narayana Murthy are role models. Shri Murthy was instrumental in creating millionaires through what is normally called Equity Stock Options. This payout was made on merit to those who added great value to the company. Even drivers got it. A very huge number of middle-class Indians became rich by working in Infosys Technologies. This can happen only when the leader has the courage of conviction to do whatever he thought was right, to bring about a revolution in the country. Today, Infosys Technologies leading the stock market is a sort of taking it forward. They promise less but always deliver more. The legacy of Shri Narayamurthy lives on. It grows from strength to strength. Mahatma Gandhi made it possible through his emphasis on truth during the entire freedom struggle.
Infuses optimism and strength in team members A family is also one important unit of society. It is also a small team. In formal organizations, where the Team is so large when the leader is so good with a strong character, the Team becomes very optimistic. It gets charged up with infectious enthusiasm. Imagine the scale of work done by the late Dr. Kurien, who made the milk revolution possible in India. He had such a good personal character that made millions of farmers participate in the cooperative movement and take it to the next level.
A strong character also makes a difference when it comes to enabling the success of big projects. There have been several good examples in modern India. Ratan Tata built a massive empire. The Tatas employ hundreds of thousands of people. Ratan Tata taught business ethics to even politicians. His character was so overwhelming that not a single politician or group or political party would dare to question him or the group on ethics. The TVS group is similarly built on the strength of huge personal integrity of each leader of the so many strategic business units. Not in the history of the entire group has there been a single instance of wrongdoing. The way they satisfy the suppliers, the supply chain operators, their own employees and so on, is the subject of so many case studies. It is not without reason that literally every company is a zero debt company in the TVS group. They quickly clear all debts, irrespective of whatever challenges they face at any point in time.
Makes the family the focus of all good things Take the family of one of the greatest Giants of India whose name was Aditya Birla. Today, his son, Kumaramangalam Birla is piloting the fortunes of a big empire called the Aditya Birla group. The personal integrity of the young Birla, who is just into his forties, is now responsible for the exponential growth of the empire. The family is the nerve center of all action. Yet, when all the good things happen, the entire world sits up and takes notice.
An entirely similar experience is also seen across many other business groups. The younger generation takes over and does a very good job. In the Murugappa group of Chennai, for example, the younger generation is doing well. This group is also known for its exceptional honesty and integrity. They do not bribe a single Government official at any point in time. Their values and ethics are there for all to see. They do not budge an inch when it comes to integrity. This strength of character makes them expand their business with ease.
Helps demolish the bad practices to a large extent Asian Paints is one organization with a zero tolerance for any unethical practice, howsoever small that may be. Officials who had faked even very small amounts were sacked on the spot. The dismissal of a trade union leader at Mumbai in the office of WIPRO and the subsequent strike is a case study in business ethics in many B-schools. Azim Premji, the big boss would not give in. The employees realized their folly and returned to work. Premji said that he would rather close down the business than taking in the trade union leader, who had faked a small bill. This ripple effect on ethics is a talk in many HR conferences, even today. Once again, the moral authority of Mr. Premji is simply fabulous. He has donated over nine hundred crores from his personal funds to work alongside the State Governments of Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka in improving standards of education at the school level.
What do such examples illustrate? If the leader has a strong character, that will have a big effect. Every single employee will stick to ethics and all bad practices can be eliminated.
Makes the youth have Icons to learn lessons from The late Kamaraj, the ex-Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu, is even today, an inspiration for millions. He is an icon. He taught the biggest lessons on ethics in politics to several other politicians. His moral authority was so complete that he lorded over the Congress Party. His integrity and honesty is the crux of his life. He had established huge Public Sector units like BHEL at Tiruchirapalli and the Neyveli Lignite Corporation at Neyveli. The youth of today, who still volunteer to do social work like deepening of lakes and ponds in several areas of Tamil Nadu, are so keen to take his life as an example and continue with their good work everywhere in the State. There can be no doubt that with the current trends of some good social work, there will be more to follow as people still remember Kamaraj and another leader called Kakkan, who was known for his record of honesty and integrity.
Conclusion There is nothing that can equal a strong character anywhere in the world. In fact, people of sound character who work for peace and progress are so few in this world. Even when the entire world becomes so commercial, we still have scope for ethics and values of a very strong order. Human beings need to build such strong characters that can act as catalysts for all times to come.
An excellent article from the author and he has given the advantages of having a strong character very nicely. My appreciations to him.
For any human being, the character is very important. A person with a good and strong character will be remembered for many days and will be admired for long. That is why our Puranas describe the importance of a good and strong character where ever possible. All the heroes of these epics are of strong and good character only. The whole idea in these epics is to teach us the necessity of strong and good character.
A strong character will help the individual also in many ways to be successful. But these days the concept is changing and we are seeing many unwanted developments in the society and I think they are all due to lack of a strong character in the majority of people.