Friday, December 21, 2012



An Apocryphal Teaching Story

Here is an apocryphal story I conjured up long back when I worked in Human Resource (HR) Management and Training. 

I used to narrate to my trainees in order to emphasize the importance of work life balance 

I called the story ADULT EDUCATION.

Do tell me if you like it. 

I will look forward to your comments and feedback.

ADULT EDUCATION - an apocryphal teaching story

A passionate HR Trainer once conducted an Adult Education Programme for semi-literate and poorly educated workers in his industrial organization.

The programme was conducted in the evenings after working hours. 

In order to ensure success of this adult education programme, both the trainees and the trainer were motivated by giving them generous amounts of financial incentives like Overtime for participation. 

This incentive of extra money ensured maximum attendance from the workers.

The trainer too got a handsome amount of money as incentive. The trainer got a generous amount of overtime and in addition to overtime he was paid an additional bonus per worker attending his classes.

All workers enthusiastically attended the Adult Education classes, except one.

His name was Ram Bharose. 

Ram Bharose was the only person who never attended Adult Education Classes despite the huge monetary incentives.

Ram Bharose would rush home after work the moment the siren rang in the evening. 

Ram Bharose was almost illiterate but he was not interested in learning anything. 

The Trainer was very disappointed with Ram Bharose and decided to motivate him to join his Adult Education Programme.

One day the Trainer called Ram Bharose to his office and asked him, “Why don’t you attend the Adult Education classes?”

“What is the use ?” asked Ram Bharose.

“You will gain more knowledge,” said the wise trainer.

“I am not interested in gaining more knowledge,” said Ram Bharose, “I am quite happy with what I know.”

Observing that the man in front of him was not interested in intellectual enhancement, the trainer tried to lure him with financial motivation.

So the trainer said, “Ram Bharose. Think of the Money. Yes, you will earn a lot of money. You earn while you learn. You will get plenty of overtime payment plus a generous attendance bonus. You will make lots of extra money if you attend these adult education classes.”

“I am not interested in making more money. I am quite happy and content with what I get,” Ram Bharose said.

The exasperated trainer then resorted to a last tactic to get him to attend the adult education classes. 

He decided to humiliate Ram Bharose in front of his co-workers, to publicly shame him.

Yes, shame is a great motivator. 

So the trainer was sure this would hurt Ram Bharose’s ego and the public humiliation would surely motivate him to attend the adult education programme.

So the trainer indicated to everyone else to keep silent and in the presence of all the “educated” co-workers the trainer asked Ram Bharose: “Who was Issac Newton?”

“I don’t know,” Ram Bharose said.

“See. Everyone knows this and you don’t know. Just see how ignorant you are,” the trainer ridiculed Ram Bharose while all the co-workers shook their heads in agreement and mocked at the ignorance of the hapless Ram Bharose.

“Who was Albert Einstein?”

“I don’t know.”

“Who was CV Raman?”

“I don’t know.”

Everyone laughed and jeered at Ram Bharose’s ignorance and made fun of him but the trainer was unrelenting and kept on asking a hapless Ram Bharose question after question: “Who was Galileo… Faraday… Edison… Bhabha…”

The barrage of questions and torment went on and on for a long time until Ram Bharose got fed up and decided not to take the humiliation any more. 

Ram Bharose suddenly stood up and asked the trainer, “Who is Chotte Lal?”

“Chotte Lal? Never heard of him,” snapped the trainer angrily, “Who is Chotte Lal?”

“I know who he is,” Ram Bharose said to the trainer with an  air of superiority, “Chotte Lal is the one who makes love to your wife every evening in your bedroom while you are busy out here taking these Adult Education Classes. It is you who requires Adult Education, not me.” 

MORAL OF THE STORY (4 Morals of the Story)

1. Educate yourself first before you embark on trying to educate others

2. Distant Vision sometimes obscures Near Vision 

If you are a “visionary” and you always tend to look too far, sometimes you cannot see what is going on under your very own nose

3. Physician, heal thyself

4. Have your priorities right and make sure you pay attention to your work-life balance.

Yes, WORK LIFE BALANCE means getting a full value from life by ensuring a balance between achievement and enjoyment in each of the four quadrants of your life:

4. SELF 

On a daily basis, every morning, you must tell yourself:

1. I want to achieve something today and I want to enjoy something today

2. I must manage to do both these things today. Then, for me, it is going to be a good day. 

3. Through work life balance, I must manage to do both of these things each day of my life. 

4. Yes, I must achieve something daily and enjoy something daily in all four aspects of my life (work, family, friends, self) each and every day for the rest of my life.

5. Then I am going to have a good life - a happy, satisfying and fulfilling life, well lived.

Dear Reader: Do you agree? 

Please comment. I look forward to your views and feedback.

Copyright © Vikram Karve 2012
Vikram Karve has asserted his right under the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988 to be identified as the author of this work. 
© vikram karve., all rights reserved.

Did you like this article?
I am sure you will like the 27 short stories from my recently published anthology of Short Fiction COCKTAIL
To order your COCKTAIL please click any of the links below:
If you prefer reading ebooks on Kindle or your ebook reader, please order Cocktail E-book by clicking the links below:

Foodie Book:  Appetite for a Stroll
If your are a Foodie you will like my book of Food Adventures APPETITE FOR A STROLL. Do order a copy from FLIPKART:

About Vikram Karve

A creative person with a zest for life, Vikram Karve is a retired Naval Officer turned full time writer and blogger. Educated at IIT Delhi, IIT (BHU) Varanasi, The Lawrence School Lovedale and Bishops School Pune, Vikram has published two books: COCKTAIL a collection of fiction short stories about relationships (2011) and APPETITE FOR A STROLL a book of Foodie Adventures (2008) and is currently working on his novel and a book of vignettes and an anthology of short fiction. An avid blogger, he has written a number of fiction short stories and creative non-fiction articles on a variety of topics including food, travel, philosophy, academics, technology, management, health, pet parenting, teaching stories and self help in magazines and published a large number of professional  and academic research papers in journals and edited in-house journals and magazines for many years, before the advent of blogging. Vikram has taught at a University as a Professor for 15 years and now teaches as a visiting faculty and devotes most of his time to creative writing and blogging. Vikram Karve lives in Pune India with his family and muse - his pet dog Sherry with whom he takes long walks thinking creative thoughts.

Vikram Karve Academic and Creative Writing Journal:
Professional Profile Vikram Karve:
Vikram Karve Facebook Page:
Vikram Karve Creative Writing Blog:
© vikram karve., all rights reserved.

No comments: