As a business ethics speaker I tell every audience on thing which is fact: EVERY CHOICE HAS A CONSEQUENCE! From time to time, people share with me inspiring stories of choices and consequences – most of which I do not have time or take time to verify.
With all the bad news spreading like a cancer, when I saw this I thought – “How remarkable” assuming it is true. If it is – I am sure that those reading can verify the accuracy. If it is not, then, if nothing else, it makes a point that perhaps we need to hear now.
Here’s the story!
His name was Fleming, and he was a poor Scottish farmer. One day, while trying to make a living for his family, he heard a cry for help coming from a nearby bog. He dropped his tools and ran to the bog.
There, mired to his waist in black muck, was a terrified boy, screaming and struggling to free himself. Farmer Fleming saved the lad from what could have been a slow and terrifying death.
The next day, a fancy carriage pulled up to the Scotsman’s sparse surroundings. An elegantly dressed nobleman stepped out and introduced himself as the father of the boy Farmer Fleming had saved.
‘I want to repay you,’ said the nobleman. ‘You saved my son’s life.’
‘No, I can’t accept payment for what I did,’ the Scottish farmer replied waving off the offer. At that moment, the farmer’s own son came to the door of the family hovel.
‘Is that your son?’ the nobleman asked.
‘Yes,’ the farmer replied proudly.
‘I’ll make you a deal. Let me provide him with the level of education my own son will enjoy. If the lad is anything like his father, he’ll no doubt grow to be a man we both will be proud of.’ And that he did.
Farmer Fleming’s son attended the very best schools and in time, graduated from St. Mary’s Hospital Medical School in London, and went on to become known throughout the world as the noted Sir Alexander Fleming, the discoverer of Penicillin.
Years afterward, the same nobleman’s son who was saved from the bog was stricken with pneumonia.
What saved his life? Penicillin.
The name of the nobleman? Lord Randolph Churchill .. His son’s name?
Sir Winston Churchill.
Someone once said: What goes around comes around.
Two great men whose lives became intertwined by the simplest choice. So whether you say, “What goes around comes around, you reap what you sow, or every choice has a consequence,” the reality is all are right. Perhaps it is time to refocus our business efforts into those that are founded on solid business ethics. Simply put – let’s make decisions that will yeild the highest and best results for all.
By the way, is the story above fact or fiction? Your comments are welcome.