Ready, Steady, Don’t Go!
Once, in a small village, lived an athletic teenager who takes part in a running competition. A large crowd gathers, including the young adult’s grandfather. It’s a competitive race that includes two past champions. The talented teenager pushes himself hard and wins the race. The crowd goes wild, cheering for him. The young man feels proud and important. His grandfather, however, remains calm and expresses no sentiment. To impress his grandpa, the kid pleads for another race.
The grandfather steps forward and presents his grandson with two new opponents – a very old man and a very frail child. The puzzled boy complains, “What? This is no race!” But the grandpa orders, “Race!!”
The race starts, and the boy makes it to the finish line before the two opponents have barely started. The ecstatic boy raises his arms in delight. But, to his surprise, this time, no one from the crowd is cheering. Everyone is staring at him silently. “What happened? Why is nobody cheering?” the boy asks his grandpa. The old man replies, “Race again, but this time all three of you finish together.”
The teenager thinks and stands between the old man and the young kid. Then he takes both the opponents by their hands and walks ever so slowly to the finishing line with them. This time, at the end of the race, the crowd goes ballistic with applause.
The grandson feels proud but is clueless who the crowd is cheering for because they all have finished together. Grandpa explains, “Son, in this race, you have won much more than in any race you have ever won before…!! You have won everyone’s respect.”
An institution’s success is not merely about racing ahead with big revenues, tall buildings, or massive headcounts. It is also about an inclusive win that pulls along everyone crossing its path – be it blue collar workforce, struggling clients and vendors, or underprivileged peripheries of society. For only an entity with a golden heart can draw applause from all stakeholders!