播下成功的種子

By Robert J. Tamasy

(編者註:我們不知這個故事出自何處,但它的信息值得我們思想。)

一位成功的商人知道該是選一位繼任者來領導他事業的時候了。他沒有選擇一位董事或兒女中的一位,他決定把公司裡的所有年輕主管們都召聚在一起。他說:「現在是我選擇下一任執行長的時候。我決定從你們當中選一位。」

那些年輕的主管們都很驚訝,但執行長繼續說:「今天我將給你們每人一顆種子,一個非常特別的種子。你們把這種子種下,澆水,一年後的今天把我給你們那種子長成的植物帶來。我會從你們帶來的植物中選出我們下一任的執行長。」

其中一位主管,吉姆,興奮地告訴他的妻子這個計畫。她幫他找了一個花盆、土壤和堆肥,然後他就把種子種下。每天他都澆水,看那種子是否生長。很快地,一些其他的主管開始談論他們的種子,說他們的植物開始長了。

吉姆不斷地查看他的種子,但什麼東西都沒有長出來。幾個禮拜過去了,還是沒有任何動靜。其他每個人都在談他們的植物,但吉姆的種子沒長出東西,他覺得自己失敗了。六個月過後,吉姆的花盆還是沒有任何東西。他認為自己的種子已經死了,但他沒有告訴他的同事們。

他繼續澆水並施肥,他迫切地想要他的種子生長。當一年的期限到了,那些年輕的主管們被指示帶著他們的植物去給執行長檢查。吉姆告訴他的妻子,他不要帶著一個空花盆去公司,但妻子力勸他對發生的事要誠實。那將是吉姆最尷尬的時刻,但他知道妻子是對的。

吉姆帶著他的的空花盆到會議室。當他到達時,其他主管所種的各樣植物讓他大為驚奇。那些植物都很漂亮,有各種形狀和尺寸。當吉姆把他的空花盆放在地上,他的許多同事都笑了。當執行長來到時,吉姆想把自己藏在後面。

執行長說:「哇,你們種了多麼好的植物、樹和花朵。今天你們當中有一人會被指定為下一任執行長!」然後執行長注意到吉姆。他邀請吉姆到前面--帶著他的空花盆。

吉姆嚇壞了。「執行長知道我是個失敗者!可能他要開除我!」當吉姆走到前面,執行長問他的種子怎麼了。吉姆解釋說道,雖然他盡了全力,但什麼東西都沒長出來。執行長轉過來請每個人都坐下,除了吉姆。然後他看著吉姆並宣佈道:「看,這就是你們的下任執行長!他的名字是吉姆。」

然後執行長解釋:「一年前的今天,我在這個房間給你們每個人一顆種子。我告訴你們把那種子帶回去,種在土裡,澆水,並在一年後帶回來。但當時我給你們的是煮過的種子;那樣是不可能生長的。你們所有人,除了吉姆,卻都帶來健康的植物和花卉。當你們發現那種子不生長,你們就換了種子。吉姆是唯一有勇氣且誠實地把我當初給的種子連同花盆帶來給我的。所以,他將是新的執行長。」

人們說:若你種下誠實,你會獲得信任。若你種下良善,你會獲得友誼。若你種下謙卑,你會獲得偉大。若你種下堅忍,你會獲得滿足。若你種下努力,你會獲得成功。若你種下饒恕,你會獲得和解。若你種下信心,你會有收穫。所以要謹慎你現在種下什麼:那會決定你將來收割什麼。

行正直路的,步步安穩;走彎曲道的,必致敗露」(箴言10章9節)。「正直人的純正必引導自己;奸詐人的乖僻必毀滅自己」(箴言11章3節)。

思想 / 討論題目
當你讀這個商業比喻時,心中出現什麼想法? 你認為這位執行長選擇繼任者的計畫是否公平且有智慧?為什麼? 若你自己處於吉姆的情況,你會怎麼做?請解釋。 並非每個人都是好的園丁,但在本篇「週一嗎哪」最後列出各種我們可種下的品格,而那些品格能讓我有特別的「收穫」。哪一種品格與你最有關係?你還能想出「種下」任何其他的品格是對工商專業界有益處嗎?註:若你有聖經且想要看有關此主題的其他經文,請看:
箴言11章2節,12章17、19節,16章11節,18章12節,19章5節,21章6節,22章4節,24章26節,25章6-7節;希伯來書13章17-18節


SOWING THE SEED OF SUCCESS
By Robert J. Tamasy

(Editor”s Note: We do not know the original source of this story, but its message is worth considering.)

A successful businessman knew it was time to choose a successor to lead his business. Instead of appointing one of his directors, or one of his children, he decided to call the company”s young executives together. He said, "It is time for me to choose the next CEO. I have decided to select one of you."

The young executives were shocked, but the CEO continued. "I am going to give each of you a SEED today – a very special SEED. Plant the seed, water it, and one year from today bring what you have grown from the seed I have given you. I will 
judge the plants you bring, and choose our next CEO."


One of the leaders, Jim, excitedly told his wife about the plan. She helped him get a pot, soil and compost, and he planted his seed. Every day, he watered it and watched to see if it had grown. Soon some of the other executives began talking about their seeds and the plants beginning to grow.

Jim kept checking his seed, but nothing ever grew. Weeks went by, but still nothing. Everyone else was talking about their plants, but Jim had no growth and felt like a failure. Six months passed, but still nothing in Jim’s pot. He concluded he had killed his seed, but said nothing to his colleagues.

He continued watering and fertilizing the soil – he desperately wanted his seed to grow. When the year ended, the young executives were instructed to bring their plants to the CEO for inspection. Jim told his wife he refused to take an empty pot to his workplace, but she urged him to be honest about what had happened. It was going to be Jim”s most embarrassing moment, but he knew his wife was right.

Jim took his empty pot to the boardroom. When he arrived, the variety of plants the other executives had grown amazed him. They were beautiful – in many shapes and sizes. When Jim put his empty pot on the floor, many of his colleagues laughed. When the CEO arrived, Jim attempted to conceal himself in back.

"My, what wonderful plants, trees and flowers you have grown," said the CEO. "Today one of you will be appointed the next CEO!" Then the CEO noticed Jim. He invited Jim to the front – with his empty pot.

Jim was terrified. "The CEO knows I’m a failure! Maybe he will have me fired!" When Jim got to the front, the CEO asked what had happened to his seed. Jim explained despite his best efforts, nothing had grown. The CEO turned to the group and asked everyone to sit down, except Jim. He then looked at Jim and announced, "Behold your next Chief Executive Officer! His name is Jim!"

Then the CEO explained: "One year ago today, I gave everyone in this room a seed. I told you to take the seed, plant it, water it, and bring it back in a year. But I gave you all boiled seeds; it was not possible for them to grow. All of you, except Jim, have brought healthy plants and flowers. When you found the seed would not grow, you substituted a different one. Jim was the only one with the courage and honesty to bring me a pot with my seed in it. Therefore, he is the one who will be the new Chief Executive Officer!"



It is said: If you plant honesty, you will reap trust. If you plant goodness, you will reap friends. If you plant humility, you will reap greatness. If you plant perseverance, you will reap contentment. If you plant hard work, you will reap success. If you plant forgiveness, you will reap reconciliation. If you plant faith, you will reap a harvest. So be careful what you plant now: it will determine what you will reap later.

The man of integrity walks securely, but he who takes crooked paths will be found out” (Proverbs 10:9).
The integrity of the upright guides them, but the unfaithful are destroyed by their duplicity” (Proverbs 11:3)

Reflection/Discussion Questions
As you were reading this business parable, what thoughts were coming to your mind? Do you think the CEO”s plan for choosing a successor was fair and wise? Why or why not? What do you think you would have done if you had found yourself in Jim”s situation? Explain your answer. Not everyone is a skillful gardener, but the end of this “Monday Manna” includes a listing of various character traits that can be planted to yield a certain kind of “crop.” Which – if any – can you relate to most closely? Can you think of any other qualities to “plant” that are beneficial in the business and professional world? NOTE: If you have a Bible and would like to review additional passages that relate to this topic, consider the following verses: Proverbs 11:2, 12:17,19, 16:11, 18:12, 19:5, 21:6, 22:4, 24:26, 25:6-7; Hebrews 13:17-18

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