Aesop’s The Ass and his Purchaser*

Posted by jlubans on September 20, 2022

A man wished to purchase an Ass, and agreed with its owner that he should try him before he bought him.
He took the Ass home, and put him in the straw-yard with his other Asses, upon which he left all the others, and joined himself at once to the most idle and the greatest eater of them all. The man put a halter on him, and led him back to his owner, saying: "I do not need a trial; I know that he will be just such another as the one whom he chose for his companion."
A man is known by the company he keeps.
Organizationally, I would be disappointed if a new hire gravitates to the least productive member of the organization.
When I was a bus boy and a golf caddy – the hotel and the golf course each had the equivalent of a “caddy shack” - I was always keen to to figure out how things worked.
Usually, there was an “old boy” (in some cases an "old guy", a "lifer") who had figured out how to work the system.
Not that I would follow his example, but it did help me to understand the “culture”, who to watch for, who to avoid and how to stay out of trouble.
More disappointing in this age of “double dipping" (working two jobs during the 40 hours of one full time job), “quiet quitting”, the Great Resignation, and “quiet firing”, is learning that the least productive are still in the office.
Who’s really not doing his/her job?

*SOURCE: Aesop's Fables: A New Revised Version From Original Sources” WITH ILLUSTRATIONS
AND OTHERS” New York : Frank F. Lovell & Company, c1884

My book, Fables for Leaders is available. Click on the image and order up!

And, don’t forget Lubans' book on democratic workplaces, Leading from the Middle

© Copyright text by John Lubans 2022

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