Book Review: The Talent Sutra: An Indian Approach to Learning by Devdutt Pattanaik

  • ISIN: B01HK4DVO0
  • Genre: Non fiction / Mythological / Business
  • Publishers: Aleph Book Company
  • Price: Rs.399/- (I got this book from the publisher for a review)
Saraswati is the goddess of knowledge in Hinduism, as well as in Buddhism and Jainism. Her name is derived from the fluidity (saras) of the imagination. Human imagination enables us to invent and innovate, visualize, plan and de-risk. Yet imagination is a bad word in the world of business and management. It strips us of certainty. We want to control the imagination of those who work for us, prevent their minds from wandering from work. Yet every human being lives in an imagined reality. Recognizing this enables us to work with talent, build strong relationships and nurture people to face any situation with faith and patience. Failure to recognize imagination is why family-owned businesses are unable to manage professionals and how professionally- run companies end up creating ineffective, mechanistic talent management systems. Training, learning and development, are not just about skills and knowledge and competencies, they are about appreciating the human-animal, recognizing that neither we nor those around us are programmable machines that we can plug and play. Managing people, hence relationships, is key to the survival of an organization.

Derived from Devdutt Pattanaik’s influential bestseller Business Sutra, this book explores concepts like creativity in the workplace, nurturing talent, and the importance of teamwork. It will help employers and managers become more inclusive leaders who are able to carry their team along with them..
Behind the book


About the Author

Dr. Devdutt Pattanaik (born December 11, 1970) is an Indian physician turned leadership consultant, mythologist and author whose works focus largely on the areas of myth, mythology, and also management. He has written a number of books related to Hindu mythology, including Myth = Mithya: A Handbook of Hindu Mythology, a novel, The Pregnant King, and Jaya: An Illustrated Retelling of the Mahabharata (2010).
He is the Chief Belief Officer of Future Group, one of India’s largest retailers, bringing the wisdom of Indian mythology into Indian business, specifically in human resource management. He also writes a column for the newspaper MID DAY. He has also written a novel based on a tale from the Mahabharata titled 'The Pregnant King' published by Penguin Books India

Me thinks

Though this book is derived from his previous book Business Sutra I still wanted to read this one to understand those lessons, albeit a bit more in depth this time.Devdutt Pattanaik is Numero-Uno when it comes to mythological retelling and that is no unknown fact. He talks about them in a manner that they don't seem to have happened centuries ago. It could have been as recent as yesterday. And that is where his power is.

He helps us connect with them, understand them minutely while he breaks down the lessons in an easy-to-understand manner for us to implement in our day-to-day lives. I quit my corporate career 2 years ago. But reading this book brought back a lot of memories for me, some pleasant and some not to pleasant. I was surprised to see myself analyzed like this basis my behavior and man, he was accurate. I wish every leader in any organization reads this to become a better team leader and lead his team to the desired goals instead of hiring and firing employees left, right and center.

I learnt a lot about people management, goal setting, aligning one's goals to company's goals and most importantly about deliverables for that is what we are judged on always and all ways. Now that I work as a freelancer I don't have a boss but that in no way makes this book useless. For it a very important tool to analyze people you work with, not necessarily as co-worker. It would be a client or someone whom you work along on a project for a brief period. This is a very helpful handy guide in understanding behavioral traits of people and analyzing them basis that instead of being judgemental and letting work get affected in that process.

Apart from easy to understand language loaded with examples it is his sketches that make reading him a perfect pleasure. This book is a treat to not only read but also to gift to someone who you feel needs these reminders in life.

Recommended highly for one and all.

Foodie Verdict

This book is like Sabudana Khicdi - completely traditional, age old recipe yet something that is devoured with relish even today with nutrients in every bite.

Source: Ruchi's Kitchen


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