Lessons From Chak De India!

Our film industry is not just about masala and dancing around trees, there have been some movies that have been really inspirational and one movie that truly inspired me in many ways is Chak de India.

Its a movie on how an Indian women hockey team, a team that exists more on paper and less in reality, goes on to win a world cup against all odds. These 16 girls initially believed to be “chakla balen chale wale ladkiya” finaly win the world cup thanks to their hardwork and coach Kabir Khan’s mentoring and guidance.

Chak de India  movie tries to make you believe that impossible is nothing and never give up. One might say, there is lot of difference in real life and reel life, but an inspiration that I took from the movie is to have faith in youself and keep trying.

After watching  the movie when I analyzed it critically I realised  that apart from the entertainment, which this movie has in abundance, it even offers several lessons, which we can learn and apply them at our work, and with our teams.

1. TEAM WORK:  First learning this movie portrays. When the girls coming from different states are asked to introduce themselves, they are strictly informed by their coach that they should play for their country first, then for their team members and if there is still some energy left, then for themselves. That’s the attitude we should take to our work everyday, first its the organization we are working for, then we are working as a team and thats how we will achieve our success and not by working in our own silos. As Vince Lombardi said “Individual commitment to a group effort — that is what makes a team work, a company work, a society work, a civilization work.”

2. TEAM GOAL: Chak de India  movie portrays this phenomena in a very effective manner. The top scorers (Preeti Sabharwal and Komal Chautala) were competing to bag the highest scorer tag and in that quest they start competing with each other and stop passing the ball to each other; which eventually turns out to be a boon for the opponent team.

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Haven’t you seen this kind of attitude in team members? The internal rivalry leading to people pulling each other down, competing against each other, and of course hoarding the information. What happens to the team? We all know the answer.

Patrick Leccoini, in his book The Five Dysfunction of a Team gives an example that – “Imagine a basketball coach in locker room at half time, calls the team’s center into the office to talk with him one-on-one about the first half, and then he does the same with the point guard, the shooting guard, the small forward, and the power forward, without any of them knowing what everyone else was talking about. That’s not a team.  It’s a collection of individuals”

Kabir Khan shows the importance of team goal by giving the final “70 minutes” speech to the entire team.

3.  TEAM LEADER: Coach Kabir khan, determined to regain his reputation transforms a raw hockey team to a cohesive winning team by exerting many leadership examples:

a)    Thrusting upon them strict discipline

b)   Extended hours of training and hard work.

c)    Instilling in them the much necessary cohesiveness by allowing them to fight against the eve teasers and thrashing them out by united, callous hits.

d)   Taking enormous risk by putting the women’s team against the powerful Men’s team, when it was suggested that the women’s team would not be sent for world cup; Khan gave an opportunity to the public at large to realise the mettle of women’s team.

e)    Effectively utilizing the strength of each member by shedding all inhibitions.

I think if we follow these points as commandments there is no way great teamwork cant be achieved. Do you agree?

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