Aesop & Business: Fine Clothes May Disguise, But Silly Words Will Disclose A Fool

The Ass in the Lion’s Skin

An Ass once found a Lion’s skin which the hunters had left out

in the sun to dry.  He put it on and went towards his native

village.  All fled at his approach, both men and animals, and he

was a proud Ass that day.  In his delight he lifted up his voice

and brayed, but then everyone knew him, and his owner came up and

gave him a sound cudgelling for the fright he had caused.  And

shortly afterwards a Fox came up to him and said: “Ah, I knew you

by your voice.”

“Fine clothes may disguise, but silly words will disclose a fool.”

There are a few important business lessons that you can draw from this fable:

Eventually, You Have To Take Ownership of Your Accomplishments (And of Your Failures)

Many times, in the business world, people will switch jobs so rapidly that they are never held accountable for the long-term position that they left the previous job in.  We have all had instances where someone moves from a long-term strategy position to a sales position and instantly begins criticizing the strategy that he helped implement.  Now, in his current position, he needs to distance himself from that strategy because he knows there were inherent weaknesses and he needs to vocally make it known that he is not at fault.  The problem is that he was at fault.  Sooner or later, throughout the business world, you will be found out if you are a “fool”, as the story so bluntly states.  Unfortunately, many people can develop well into their careers before this discovery is made.  Fortunately, the discovery is always made.  Protect yourself by focusing on the long-term, even while planning short-term moves in your own corporate ladder evolution.  Protect your legacy by managing for the long-term at all times, so that you can someday look back and say that you started something successful.  Take ownership of the good, as well as the bad, moments of your career and learn from both.  Do not pick up the Lion’s skin, focus on actually becoming a Lion.

About Todd Hagopian (@ToddHagopian)

Todd Hagopian received his BA from Eastern Michigan University with a major in Political Science. After graduation, he worked as a Financial Advisor and a Bank Manager before returning to school. He attended Michigan State University, where he completed an MBA with a double-major in Finance and Marketing. Todd is now a Senior Product Development Manager for a Fortune 500 company. He frequently writes about business issues, social media strategy, and political issues that he finds important. Enjoy the blog!

Posted on December 6, 2011, in Aesop's Fables & Business and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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