THE NEXT CEO….Integrity and Honesty

A successful business man was growing old and knew it was time to choose a successor to take over the business. Instead of choosing one of his directors or his children, he decided to do something different. He called all the young executives in his company together. He said, “it is time for me to step down and choose the next CEO. I have decided to choose one of you. The young executives were shocked, but the boss continued. I am going to give each of you a SEED today one very special SEED. I want you to plant the seed, water it and come back here one year from today with what you have grown from the seed I have given you. I will then judge, and the one I choose will be the next CEO. One man named Jim was there that day and he, like the others received a seed. He went home and excitedly told his wife the story. She helped him get a pot, soil and compost and he planted the seed.
Everyday, he would water it and watch if it had grown. After about three weeks, some of the other executives began to talk about their seeds and the plants that were beginning to grow. Jim kept checking his seed, but nothing ever grew. Three weeks, four weeks, five weeks went by, still nothing. By now, others were talking about their plants, but Jim didn’t have a plant and he felt like a failure. Six months went by still nothing to in Jim’s pot. He just knew he had killed his seed. Everyone else had trees and tall plants, but he had nothing. Jim didn’t say anything to his colleagues; however he just kept watering and fertilizing the soil. He so wanted the seed to grow.
A year finally went by and all the young executives of the company brought their plants to the CEO for inspection. Jim told his wife that he wasn’t going to take an empty pot. But she asked him to be honest about what happened Jim felt sick to his stomach, it was going to be the most embarrassing moment of his life. He took his empty pot to the board room. When Jim got there he was amazed at the variety of plants grown by the other executives. They were beautiful, in all shapes and sizes. Jim put his empty pot on the floor and many of his colleagues laughed, a few felt sorry for him! When the CEO arrived, he surveyed the room and greeted his young executives. Jim just tried to hide at the back, oh my, what great plants and trees have you grown said the CEO. Today one of you will be appointed the next CEO! All of a sudden, the CEO spotted Jim at the back of the room with his empty pot. He ordered the financial Director to bring him to the front. Jim was terrified, he thought, the CEO knows he is a failure. Maybe he would have me fired, when Jim got to the front, the CEO asked him what had happened to his seed… Jim told him the story.


The CEO than asked everyone to sit down except Jim. He looked at Jim, and then announced to the young executives, Behold your next Chief Executive Officer, his name is Jim! Jim could not believe it, Jim couldn’t even grow his seed, and how could he be the new CEO? The others asked, then the CEO said; 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 to me today. But I gave you all boiled seeds; they were all dead – it was not possible for them to grow. All of you except Jim have brought me trees and plants and flowers. When you found that the seed would not grow, you substituted another seed for the one I gave you. 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.

Lesson learnt
1- Honesty is the best policy; this saying is as old as London, but it can never be over stretched, Honesty is key, you might not gain but you would definitely make your conscience clean.
2- Two is better than one; the wife is a better half, some women build you while others destroys you, get a wife that would constantly drive your values and build you, Jim’s wife would definitely drive him to success.
3- Learn to take responsibilities for your actions, Jim stood up to face the CEO even with an empty pot, he had his defense which was the truth.
4- You would definitely be rewarded for your good work, strife to do the best even when things don’t look its best. Jim struggled with the plant, watered and nurtured it but it never grew. At the end of the tunnel there’s a bright light. You might never see it till you get to the end.

1 Comment

Filed under Nigeria, Uncategorized, unlimited power

One response to “THE NEXT CEO….Integrity and Honesty

  1. “…you might not gain but…” you certainly will not lose.

    If we want to be part of (or build) that great institution, we simply cannot afford to compromise on integrity and honesty.

    Nice one.

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