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Management lessons from Rani of Jhansi

February 26, 2009

As expected, Lakshmibai's requests were shot down by the British. In March 1858, General Rose led an army into Jhansi. All entrance gates to the city were closed. The British army started bombarding the city, which damaged the walls. But overnight, Lakshmibai's people set it right.

This continued for weeks and frustrated the designs of the British army as they could not move forward. A few of Lakshmibai's best gunners were women; elsewhere in her army too, there was a good representation of women.

She had recruited people based on skills, irrespective of their caste, creed or sex, and therefore formed a formidable defence. She handpicked the personnel and deployed them studying the ground situation.

Lesson: Team formation is fundamental to success, and senior management involvement helps. They can apply their rich experience in choosing right people for the right job. This also helps team members to have an access with senior management if they have any suggestions and recommendations. It also makes information flow smoother and decision-making faster.

Image: General Rose

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