Friday, October 18, 2019

Adult Education – A Story

An Apocryphal Teaching Story
Short Fiction

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

I used to narrate this story 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 allowance for participation. 

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

The trainer too got a handsome amount of money as incentive. 

Yes – the trainer got a generous amount of overtime for conducting Adult Education Classes. 

Also – 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 Sukhi Lal. 

Sukhi Lal was the only person who never attended Adult Education Classes despite the huge monetary incentives.

Sukhi Lal would rush home after work the moment the siren rang in the evening. 

Sukhi Lal was almost illiterate but he was not interested in learning anything. 

The Trainer was very disappointed with Sukhi Lal and he decided to motivate Sukhi Lal to join his Adult Education Programme.

One day the Trainer called Sukhi Lal to his office and asked him: “Why don’t you attend the Adult Education classes?”

“What is the use...?” asked Sukhi Lal.

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

“I am not interested in gaining more knowledge...” said Sukhi Lal, “I am quite happy with whatever 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: “Sukhi Lal. 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...” Sukhi Lal said.

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

He decided to humiliate Sukhi Lal in front of his co-workers – the trainer decided to publicly shame Sukhi Lal.

Yes – shame is a great motivator. 

The trainer was sure this would hurt Sukhi Lal’s ego – and the public humiliation would surely motivate him to attend the adult education programme. 

At lunchtime – in the canteen – the trainer called Sukhi Lal and all the other workers who attended adult education classes. 

The trainer indicated to everyone else to keep silent. 

Then  in the presence of all the “educated” co-workers – the trainer asked Sukhi Lal“Who was Issac Newton...?”

“I don’t know...” Sukhi Lal said.

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

“Who was Albert Einstein...?” the Trainer asked Sukhi Lal. 

“I don’t know...” Sukhi Lal said. 

“Who was CV Raman...?” the Trainer asked Sukhi Lal. 

“I don’t know...” Sukhi Lal said. 

Everyone laughed and jeered at Sukhi Lal’s ignorance and made fun of him. 

But – the trainer was unrelenting – and he kept on asking a hapless Sukhi Lal question after question: 

“Who was Galileo… Faraday… Edison… Bhabha…?”

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

Sukhi Lal suddenly stood up and asked the trainer: “Tell me Who is Chhote Lal...?”

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

“See. You don’t know who Chhote Lal is. But I know who he is...” Sukhi Lal said to the trainer with an  air of superiority, “Chhote Lal is the man who makes love to your wife every evening in your bedroom while you are busy out here conducting 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” – you always tend to look too far  and 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 – I must 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 
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. 

1. This story is a fictional spoof, satire, pure fiction, just for fun and humor, no offence is meant to anyone, so take it with a pinch of salt and have a laugh.
2. All stories in this blog are a work of fiction. Events, Places, Settings and Incidents narrated in the stories are a figment of my imagination. The characters do not exist and are purely imaginary. Any resemblance to persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental.

Copyright Notice:
No part of this Blog may be reproduced or utilized in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical including photocopying or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the Blog Author Vikram Karve who holds the copyright.
Copyright © Vikram Karve (All Rights Reserved)

This Story Posted Earlier in my blogs a number of times earlier inculding at URL: etc 

© vikram karve., all rights reserved.

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