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Virat Kohli, the CEO

Virat Kohli is probably enjoying a kind of form now that even if he tries, and edges one to the keeper, the ball will fly over him. And let’s just not limit it to his batting. He is fielding tremendously and just when you think India miss an idea or two because the captain is the wicketkeeper far flung from the running in pace bowlers, here is Kohli at mid-off, chatting, ideating and encouraging the bowlers.

These attributes are perfect for a manager. Attributes like leading from the front with your own form, encouraging your teammates by not just your performance but chirping them on their loose days and respecting the opposition are a few talents every team manager should possess to succeed. Lets look at the points above in more detail.

Self Performance: There is no excuse to self performance. A manager, no matter what credentials he walks in with, has to put in his best to prove that he deserves to be in the lead. No matter how much you think there is nothing to prove, there is always something that has to be proven in this day and age to make sure you remain on top and in command. Kohli does this like a method, a habit. His numbers chasing (something India always struggled before this new crop of players took over) is phenomenal. For example, his average is a staggering 83 chasing in T20 internationals. And in successful run chases his average further propels to 109 :).

Supporting your teammates: Not everyone in the team are going to have a great day always. There will always be a fast bowler (read developer or assistant managers for professionals) who might not be having a good day at office. Anyone who has seen Kohli off late would know how he charges up everyone on the ground. If a pacer is not doing well, he would run across from his fielding position and cheer and encourage him. Look at how Kohli kept chatting with someone as senior as Yuvraj too and that worked, didn’t it? Without this quality you are another zombie on the floor who wants to finish his stuff and leave.

Respect towards the Opposition: This definitely is a change and a welcome one. I mean when did Virat Kohli start appreciating the opposition? Yes, he does that now. Whether it is publicly talking of how Amir was the best he has faced on a night or talking about how another team cannot be taken lightly, He is respecting his rivals but quite importantly not letting that respect to get better of him. When you respect your opposition, you study them well and when you study them well, you come out of your strength areas, work on your weaknesses and leave no stone unturned to win. Hence, it’s important for managers to keep respecting the opposition and researching them well.  

Lastly Humility: One distinct quality which most of us lose as we step up the corporate ladder is being humble and modest. When he came in, Kohli looked a very rash and arrogant young man. But he has undergone a drastic change off late on this quality too. He does not let success go to his head. He sounds humble, wants to stay hungry and foolish and is respectful to everyone which includes past and present cricketers. As his popularity is increasing, what am enjoying to watch in him is his enthusiasm to still improve.

As people managers we need to take care of these things. I remember Harsha Bhogle’s very famous speech at IIM Ahmedabad as I write my concluding lines which said “Talent can only take you to a level, beyond that it’s your attitude that matters” and that attitude in Virat is making him the biggest thing to have happened to Indian cricket since Sachin Tendulkar.


Hoping this helped. Kindly pass on your comments and feedback below.

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