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This is one of the stories shared by Prof Mankad with me.

Once on his tour, the Buddha was resting in the shade of a large pipal tree. Under a nearby tree a group of dancing girls was also resting. One of the apprentice musician girls asked the leader of the group, “How do I tune this string instrument?” The head of the group, a ravishing beauty of a dancing girl, obviously with limited virtue and ignominious fame said, “do not stretch it so much that it breaks and do not leave it so loose that it does not play”. Buddha hearing this went to her and bowed to her with respect. His disciples seeing him bow to a very infamous character were disturbed and intrigued. When they asked Buddha about his behavior, he said, she taught me a valuable lesson in life.

This story tells us a very valuable lesson. The lesson of balancing act, I recalled the recent incident of Cricket test match between India and South Africa. In that match Indian player Sreesanth and South African player Graeme Smith had an altercation. For this incident Indian Cricket team captain M S Dhoni made a statement in press for Sreesanth – “…there is nothing called over aggression till you don’t cross the limit. There are guidelines which need to be followed. You need to be yourself but at the same time shouldn’t get into others’ space…”

The balancing act also applies to businesses in terms of product portfolio, organizational behavior and a balance between business and social responsibility (triple bottom line). This also applies to individuals e.g. work-life balance.

The other important lesson to learn from the story is – one can learn from wherever one wants to learn from and no one is old or young to learn from. This is what an earlier blog suggested – Learning… and possibility thinking.