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E-mail? What e-mail?

February 10, 2008

One inspiring and motivating story for businessman-wannabes:

A man was out of job and was looking high and low for one. He was told that a big company located at the big building around the corner needed cleaners. 

He stepped inside the building and greeted a man with a tag ‘Supervisor’ politely. The supervisor was clearly very busy at his desk and didn’t even look at the man’s face. ‘I am very busy today, just leave your documents and an e-mail address and we will contact you.’

The man was puzzled as he had no idea what on earth is this ‘e-mail’. So with great humbleness he asked the supervisor only to be told off. ‘If you don’t have any e-mail, you can’t work here.’

So the man stepped outside feeling confused on what is this ‘e-mail’. He was frustrated because he desperately needed a job to feed his family. Clinching his only dollar left in his hand, he sat outside the big building and saw a kiosk across the street selling red, juicy tomatoes.

Looking at the note in his hand, his eyes raced to the kiosk, with the words of the supervisor still echoing in his head. ‘If you don’t have an email you can’t work here…e-mail…here…e-mail….can’t…no work’. (not in that order I think but you got it)

He thought, with that dollar he could get on a bus and return home but would see his hungry children. Or, he said to himself, he would use the money to buy those tomatoes but then that’s it.

Then as fate would have it, he got an idea. He decided to buy the tomatoes and sell them, making a small profit. So he knocked on the nearest house and asked if anyone would like to buy fresh tomatoes at two dollars. Sold!

He returned to the kiosk and bought another dollar worth of tomatoes and knocked on the next house. He kept on doing this until the day was over and he had managed to accumulate fifty dollars (and a very smelly body).

He returned home with food for his family but making sure he saved some so he could do his door-to-door tomatoes on the next day. After a year doing tomato-rounds, he managed to buy a second-hand motorcycle (so he wouldn’t smell that terrible, kidding).

After years on his bike (and less body odour – kidding again), he was able to open up a small shop, still selling tomatoes.

Many years went by and he was able to expand his business, buying a truck for his door-to-door delivery and even employed several staff. It wasn’t that long when his business was really doing well that he started to export tomatoes.

One journalist asked if he would like to share his rags-to-riches story to which he agreed. This journalist asked if she could send him an e-mail beforehand. The man told her, ‘What e-mail? If I do have an e-mail maybe I would still be working as a cleaner till today.’

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