Back in 2012, I had written a post on Stories and Storytelling: A Business Enabler? You may click here to visit the post. Since then my faith in Storytelling as a knowledge management technique has gone up by a few notches. Storytelling is an important element in what I do now to earn my bread. I draw a lot of inspiration from the quote below:
“Human memory is story-based. Not all memories, however, are stories. Rather, stories are especially interesting prior experiences, ones from which we learn…Not every experience makes a good story, but if it does, the experience will be easier to remember.” Roger Schank, an artificial intelligence researcher at Northwestern University.
For today’s post let me share the story which I had included in my earlier post. This is a story which has got a place in Paulo Coelho’s blog! The author of the story is unknown but the message that it portrays probably touches all of us trying to find success through whatever we do. I first saw it here. Here you go….
An American businessman was standing at the pier of a small coastal Mexican village when a small boat with just one fisherman docked. Inside the small boat were several large yellow fin tuna. The American complimented the Mexican on the quality of his fish.
“How long it took you to catch them?” The American asked.
“Only a little while.” The Mexican replied.
Why don’t you stay out longer and catch more fish?” The American then asked.
“I have enough to support my family’s immediate needs.” The Mexican said.
“But,” The American then asked, “What do you do with the rest of your time?”
The Mexican fisherman said, “I sleep late, fish a little, play with my children, take a siesta with my wife, Maria, stroll into the village each evening where I sip wine and play guitar with my amigos, I have a full and busy life, senor.”
The American scoffed, “I am a Harvard MBA and could help you. You should spend more time fishing and with the proceeds you buy a bigger boat, and with the proceeds from the bigger boat you could buy several boats, eventually you would have a fleet of fishing boats.”
“Instead of selling your catch to a middleman you would sell directly to the consumers, eventually opening your own can factory. You would control the product, processing and distribution. You would need to leave this small coastal fishing village and move to Mexico City, then LA and eventually NYC where you will run your expanding enterprise.”
The Mexican fisherman asked, “But senor, how long will this all take?”
To which the American replied, “15-20 years.”
“But what then, senor?”
The American laughed and said, “That’s the best part. When the time is right you would announce an IPO (Initial Public Offering) and sell your company stock to the public and become very rich, you would make millions.”
“Millions, senor? Then what?”
The American said slowly, “Then you would retire. Move to a small coastal fishing village where you would sleep late, fish a little, play with your kids, take a siesta with your wife, stroll to the village in the evenings where you could sip wine and play your guitar with your amigos…”