(Article by Pragati Anand, Director, Galerie d’Art, Rai Foundation, New Delhi)
Art & Management

AspirationsMusic, dance, theatre, fine arts have a universal appeal. Today, effective management is about fusion of all these art forms. Combination of art and management is the new principle to get the best out of somebody. This article is an attempt to tell you how you can combine art and management for getting ahead in your career.

The key word in today’s time for the corporate sector is ‘Creative Management’. Creative management means fusion of two related bodies of knowledge, that of management studies and creativity. Creativity is not always inborn but can also be generated and nurtured through arts. The creativity and interdisciplinary approaches provided by performing and fine arts, the academic orientation provided through the management courses and the professional focus, all combine together to form a successful career in the corporate world. Thus arts – music, dance, theatre, fine arts – all have a universal appeal and through these art forms we can change the personality of an individual.

A management student may have good knowledge of his subject, excellent skills and lots of potential, but the world will know about all these only if he can properly present himself as well as his qualities. Most people fail in interviews and personality tests because of the lack of effective communication skills. When we talk of communication skills, we are not talking about any language skill. People generally perceive the lack of command of any particular language as their weakness. The lack of communication is more due to lack of a basic behaviour pattern.

The most powerful of all languages is the body language. Even when we are not communicating verbally, we keep on communicating through our actions, expressions and postures. Thus we need practice and improve upon our body language. When a person goes for an interview, the personality of the person plays a major role in creating an impression about the person. The common problem faced by students is lack of confidence. The interview begins from the moment you enter the interview room. I distinctly remember a case of an IAS officer who before he got into the Civil Services was going through the various examinations. He cleared his preliminary and mains and had to go through the interview before he could finally get selected. Well, the moment he entered the interview room, he out of nervousness tripped and fell causing much embarrassment to the interviewers and himself. He quickly and smartly got up, and with a smile said, “I think I have fallen into good company.” So here it was purely his confidence and presence of mind that made him overcome his embarrassment.

There is yet another area which we tend to ignore but is very much a part of the corporate sector. In today’s world, work or study related tensions, personal issues and abnormal lifestyles are the causes of mental stress and strain. These disorders if not taken care of in time, can have an adverse impact on the health and fitness of an individual. Therefore, it is important to find ways and means to keep ourselves occupied with stress relieving activities. Here, once again the arts play a major role in rejuvenating a person.

DANCE: Dance improves body image, self-esteem, attentiveness, and communication skills. It brings in grace in girls and style in boys. It helps in body language, eye contact and pleasant expressions through face and movement. It reduces stress, fears and anxieties as well as lessens feelings of isolation, body tension, chronic pain and depression. It enables non-verbal communication skills and feeling of well-being. It enhances the functioning of body’s circulatory and respiratory systems.

THEATRE: Body & mind are interrelated and the state of the body can affect attitude & feelings both positively & negatively. Moving & communicating spontaneously helps students to learn to recognize and trust their impulses, and to act on or contain them as they choose. It further builds confidence, encourages self-expression and opens up new ways of thinking and doing things. Theatre helps in verbal as well as non-verbal communication techniques, voice modulation, fluency & clarity of speech, listening techniques, and body language.

FINE ARTS: Creative expression which is the basis of all arts can have a significant impact on the healing process. Revitalizing one’s self with painting will allow the student to maintain proper balance and perspective in life. Art is all about creativity, and getting people to be creative helps people. The students concentrate on art and try to give expression to their creativity and thus tend to forget their problems. When in a group they tend to discuss art rather than their problems and start making relationships and building up their confidence.

YOGA: Yoga is not just a kind of physiotherapy, but from ancient times, it is being used for inner development too. Yoga has now been accepted around the world. It is extremely beneficial in the fast life of today. It not only increases stamina and builds confidence but also acts deeply on the entire personality of the individual. It creates an aura around the individual which makes his personality impressive.

The Performing arts in its various forms can provide students with an enriching experience. Through these art forms, we can develop the hidden talents of youth, channelise their ubiquitous energies into creative, constructive and rewarding activities and at the same time develop their personalities.