Friday Fable. Aesop’s “THE DOG AND HER MASTER*”

Posted by jlubans on September 28, 2012

“A man who was about to go on a journey said to his dog who was standing beside him, 'Why are you just standing there with your mouth hanging open? Get yourself ready, you're going to go with me.' The dog wagged her tail, fawning on her master as she said, 'I am all ready to go; you are the one who's delaying!'”
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Caption. Bridger: Let’s go!
Having just been on a ten-day road trip with Bridger, my daughter Mara's black lab, I can well attest to a dog’s preparedness and readiness to move it!
And, I think there are times when a manager can be misled into thinking the staff he or she has to work with aren’t really that interested or prepared to take on challenges. In Leading from the Middle I give at least one example of how a large group of staff were viewed by supervisors as hidebound reactionaries. It did seem that way as supervisor after supervisor directed the staff to do the job “My way.” Each effort failed. Those supervisors never consulted with the staff on how best to do the work. Finally one supervisor, under the gun to lead the group to higher productivity, admitted to the staff he did not have a clue about what they did and asked for help. Imagine that!
Within a day or two, the former "hardshells" showed they were not the ones delaying; they were ready to go. This staff produced a multi-page list of what could be done immediately to unplug the chronic logjams. The supervisor had little to say beyond, “Do it!” They did.

*Source: Aesop's Fables. A new translation by Laura Gibbs. Oxford University Press (World's Classics): Oxford, 2002.


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