Sweep Your Neighbour’s Porch

My neighbor, Mr C, was sweeping the porch area in front of his door in the morning. He didn’t only sweep his part of the porch, but also helped to clean mine. It drew the attention of my two very curious girls.

Girls: Uncle, why do you sweep our house too?

Mr C: Of course I should sweep your part too. Because when the wind blows, if your part is dusty, it’ll blow over to my part too.

Girls: Seems like we learnt a good lesson today. You are a good man, Uncle. Thank you.

Mr C: Hahaha…

Such a simple and trivial episode contains a lot of practical wisdom for me.

Sometimes, in the pursue of competitiveness, we forget to that the well-being of our industry peers will impact us, in one way or another.

It seems like a smart move to keep knowledge to ourselves, to think and speak poorly about our competitors, to mind our own businesses. It doesn’t pay to be a good guy, right?

But think about this. In school, who would you respect more, a teacher who is helpful towards other teachers and is also respected by them, or a teacher who always put down others, or is unwilling to teach other teachers? As educators, respect from parents and students is one of our greatest assets. When we care for our peers, we command respect.

In business, surprisingly, things may be the same. We do well when our neighbours do well. That is why unions and associations are formed. That is why leadership in each industry is needed. Even in the most competitive industry, individual companies cannot flourish if on the whole, the industry has a bad rep.

From what I understand, Jewish businessmen are extremely successful because they have a strong trust among their own community. It’s easy for them to find partners to explore ventures because they are bound by a common code of honor.

Mr C sweeps his neighbour’s porch.

We can do the same by helping another educator.

Thanks for reading.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s