Have you watched the acclaimed Mongolian film “Aravt“? It was about a tiny unit of 10 soldiers, known as an “Aravt”, within the colossal military forces of Chinggis Khaan. What does an “Aravt” have to do with business today?
In the film “Aravt”, a highly skilled team of 10 people (an “Aravt”), the smallest operational unit operating in the army of Chinggis Khaan, was sent to invite a renowned physician to assist the Khaan. The 10 people showed humanity throughout their journey, sacrificing themselves, with courage and fortitude, managed to return back to camp to report to their commander.
Even in the Great Khaan’s period, where he led a huge army to expand his territory outwards to one of the greatest empires in history, he did not allow his army to become ineffective in its size. The smallest denominator was the unit “Aravt”, of 10 men, where these 10 men would labor and fight alongside each other, supporting each other in as seamless a manner as possible.
The Aravt was seen as the most effective size that could carry out military operations effectively, with manageable logistics, and could move quickly and stealthily whenever needed, to achieve military or other objectives.
In our modern economy, we have also seen very large organizations face tremendous challenges in attempting to manage their operations spanning many continents, and subsequently facing not merely grave challenges, but some even face extinction. Some of the greatest brands we have lived through, have become non-existent, or become mere shadows of their former grandeur, and mostly forgotten.
Large entities can intimidate or impress, but is always difficult to manage. Civilizations from our ancient history has shown us that, consistently.
There is also an increasing phenomenon that parallels the Chinggis Khaan’s Aravt, where small, professional, tightly tuned teams run effective incursions into the crowded and competitive marketplace, with streamlined logistics and resources, flying under the radar of larger and slower competitors.
No matter what size our business may be, we need to tweak and tune our operations into effective units that can be better managed, and in turn, have better leverage in the cut-throat marketplace. We need to think like one of these commando soldiers in an “Aravt”, where wisdom, intelligence, organization, fortitude, endurance and courage, are entrenched in each of us in these small units. Think small, think streamlined, think fast, think brave.