“Being idle is ordinary; Being ideal is eXtraOrdinary.” – Naveen Lakkur
Everyone works hard to earn a living. When some people go a Little Extra in contributing meaningfully, selflessly, and consistently to benefit society and inspire people around them, they become an ideal person. When someone does not continue to do what they have to do and instead they find ways not to do their task, only those people are idle. Either way, everyone learns.
Story 1 – Enjoying Work Will Inspires Others
Years ago, there was a king that wanted to see how his subjects were doing. So he set out in disguise to talk to them. When he neared a construction site, he found a person who was sitting beside it and counting the number of stones around him. When the king asked him, “Hello sir, I hope you are having fun. What is going on here?” The person chided the king and said, “Can’t you see, there is construction work going on.”
The king asked, “How come you are sitting here while the whole town is working?” The person angrily answered, “I am tasked to help in the construction of this building but I am not interested. I did it for some time but I find it an impossible task and I am bored. So, I think I am better off sitting and watching others involve themselves in construction.” The king leaves him be and walks to another working nearby.
Let’s call the next person Person No.2. He was seen heaving construction material to the building site. When the king asks him what he was doing, the person number 2 says, “Can’t you see. I am lugging these materials to the construction site. First of all, I am not up to it and you want to chat me up and waste my time. I am only doing this so that I can make a living.” Feeling sorry for the stress this person was going through, the king moves further.
In another part of the construction site, he sees a man smiling while doing the same work as the last person. When the king asked him what he was doing, he answered, Well sir, I am working to help build a temple that will stand for millennia. This temple will serve people and relieve their stress. Great gurus and teachers will walk the hallways and impart their teachings to a lot of people. It will also be a place where people seek solace during tough times. I am glad I am part of the construction project. It is an honor. The king also sees that his coworkers drew inspiration from him.
Person 2 had his mind in his work but not his heart into the job. However, person no.1 had neither his heart nor his mind and hence he was idling away his time. Person 3 showed an ideal character towards his job that also inspired his colleagues. His little extra efforts today to create a much better tomorrow is eXtraOrdinary.
Story 2 – Ratan Tata’s Commitment to Philanthropy
During times of crisis like that of the COVID-19 pandemic, people are staying home to keep themselves and their families safe. Some people who go a Little Extra, whether there is a pandemic or not are seen as ideal people when they meaningfully contribute. While the majority are looking for an opportunity to venture out and contribute, some people have become role models by taking action. Ratan Tata of the Tata Group has been involved in many philanthropic contributions in his life.
Recently, he offered to help out the ‘Coronavirus Warriors’ which includes doctors, health workers, and nurses by offering the rooms in the Taj Mahal Hotel in Mumbai, one of the most luxurious hotels in the world. He is an ideal personality today that many of them aspire to learn from.
He also pledged 500 crore rupees so that the government of India can be equipped with respiratory kits, testing kits, personal protective equipment to handle the spike in patients infected by the virus. He also said that if it is truly required, he would give away his fortune if it’s going to help the country.
However, this is not a surprise as he is an ideal person who has moved people with his gesture. Besides, philanthropy runs in the family blood. They have contributed to nation-building for more than a century. They have given some of the finest institutions such as Indian Institute of Science, the Tata Institute of Social Sciences, the Tata Institute of Fundamental Research and the National Centre for the Performing Arts.
The philanthropic attitude is carried over by their associates and employees too. After a career with Tata Group, Ratan Tata became Chairman of Tata Trusts, the philanthropic arm of Tata. Tata Trust and Ratan Tata have always gone a Little Extra and have contributed to many fields in India namely, healthcare, nutrition, education, water conservation, social justice, and disaster relief.
Speaking of disaster relief, when the terrorist attack struck the Taj Mahal Hotel at Mumbai, the employees who had a chance to run away to save themselves did not. They instead stuck around to help and protect guests and diners. Some of the employees hid guests from the terrorists who were systematically killing everyone in the hotel. Their bravery did not go unnoticed and have been reacted in movies and talked about in the media.
This attitude was a representation of the spirit of service and commitment to their work and the culture of the organization and it has been a model for other philanthropists.
Story 3 – Dr. Uma Receives a ‘Driving Ovation’
Continuing on disaster relief, it is time to talk about the heroics of doctors across the world. They are ideal people who are working full time (24×7) and they are being hailed as heroes and saviors across the globe. The whole world today is a frontline.
Dr. Uma Rani Madhusan is one such warrior doctor who has been hailed as a hero. Dr. Uma was born in Mysore. She finished her medical education at JSS Medical College, a constituent college of JSS Academy of Higher Education and Research, Mysuru in 1990. After that, she moved to Malaysia with her husband. After a few years, the family moved to the USA where started her work at South Windsor Hospital.
When the recent COVID-19 epidemic hit the USA, she, like many health workers, treated the patients. The local neighborhood honored her with a ‘Drive of Honour’ or the ‘Driving Ovation’ if you please. The video of the event went viral and it was shared by celebrities including the Medical Education Minister of Karnataka, Dr. K. Sudhakar.
She became an ideal person by going a Little Extra and worked full time. The ‘Driving Ovation’ or the ‘Drive of Honor’ consisted of police vehicles, fire engines, and also private vehicles. The vehicles blared horns as they passed in front of her lawn while the good doctor stood on her lawn waving back at the vehicles and acknowledging the honor. She is an inspiration now to many more workers and all because of her attitude towards her work and service to people, extraordinary commitment!