In the heaven of freedom

Here is my little tribute to Adfactors PR. Our actions are determined by what we ruminate over. What we ruminate over depends on the questions we ask ourselves.  Since leadership makes or breaks organisations, it is one such topic often discussed within our teams. As our thinking evolves, so do our actions. Like iron sharpens iron, these are the principles at work in every single team member who align with the vision of the founders. It makes the parts great and the whole even greater. 

One internal reference point is a poem in the form of a letter written by Swami Ramdas describing Shivaji Maharaj. Just to quote a few of the leadership principles mentioned in the first paragraph of the poem, Shivaji Maharaj is described as:

जाणता राजा (a wise and intelligent king), as Proverbs 10:30 says wisdom is found on the lips of him who has understanding

निश्चयाचा महामेरू (of firm resolve), in everything we aspire to do

बहुत जनांसी आधारू (a protector of all his people), taking decisions to protect everyone during an unprecedented crisis like Covid

अखंडस्थितीचा निर्धारु (of unwavering determination), to be of single minded focus to improve for the welfare of all our stakeholders

श्रीमंत योगी (rich in what Bhagvad Gita described yogi as fearless, purity of heart, perseverance in acquiring wisdom, charity, subjugation of the senses, performance of holy rites, study of the scriptures, self-discipline), which guides our ethical behaviour.  

When I joined Adfactors I asked myself – why do I work here? Eight years back I jotted a few points about Adfactors which still ring true.

  • We encourage everyone to have an ambition. We create the best environment possible to succeed – which means freedom, ability to rise to your potential, vision and direction.
  • We have an opportunity to work with team members who are better than us. It allows us to hone our skills.
  • Part of a vision and a chance in history to be in the top 20 PR consultancies in the world and probably the only firm to represent India globally
  • Never short on commitment and investment 
  • Clarity of thought and action

 Today, we are the largest PR consultancy not just pan-India but also if one only looked at South India. With 130 team members and over 100 clients we have grown at scale. In 2017, when I was looking for an office, I often thought about what best describes Adfactors and what kind of work place it should be. Inspired by a poem written by Rabindranath Tagore before India’s independence, I put a large mural across at the centre of our office. It represents Tagore’s vision of a new and awakened India. When I read this poem, it reminds me of an awakened Adfactors –

Where the mind is without fear

And the head is held high

Where knowledge is free

Where the world has not been broken up into fragments by narrow domestic walls

Where words come out from the depth of truth

Where tireless striving stretches its arms towards perfection

Where the clear stream of reason has not lost its way

Into the dreary desert sand of dead habit 

Where the mind is led forward by thee

Into ever-widening thought and action

Into that heaven of freedom, my Father, let my country awake.

As we look to the next 25 years, these (and many such) ruminations about our work and future shape our ideology. They also influence our values, principles, thoughts and actions. In this heaven of freedom as we stretch our tireless striving towards perfection. Godspeed to us all. 

The views and opinions published here belong to the author and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of the publisher. This article is part of a SILVER JUBILEE series by Adfactors PR commemorating their 25th year in the business of Public Relations.

S Roy Kandpal
S Roy Kandpal works with Adfactors PR, India’s largest and most awarded public relations firm.

He likes to learn and discuss the preaching and practice of Public Relations in India.

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