BK Magazine Business Fables
Posted by Jeevan Sivasubramaniam, Managing Director, Editorial, Berrett-Koehler Publishers Inc.
A farmer has 895 sheep. Realizing that this is quite a lot of sheep for one farm, and Jess the sheepdog is getting a bit old, he decides he'll probably need a new dog to round so many sheep up.
So the next day, the farmer goes to the pet store. He looks around at the various herding dogs--they seem very fit, but young and untrained. The shopkeeper asks the farmer if he wants any help.
"Why yes," says the farmer. I need a sheepdog to help round up my flock. I have a rather large number of sheep, you see, and I don't think any of these young pups would be up to the task of rounding up so many."
The shopkeeper says, "I've got just the one for you!" and leads the farmer into a small back room, where a single sheepdog sits waiting.
"Are you sure?" asks the farmer, "I have very many sheep and I don't think this dog will be able to round all of them up.".
"I'm sure." says the shopkeeper, "This is a very intelligent dog. He's been well-trained for many jobs and has skills beyond any other dog I've ever seen."
"Yes," says the dog, "I know six languages, eight martial arts, and I have a degree in engineering." The farmer, clearly very impressed by this dog--who wouldn't be impressed by that?--decides to take him home.
That afternoon, the farmer and the dog walk together up the hill, and from the top they can see the entire flock covering the fields. "Well," says the farmer, "I'd like you to round up all of these sheep."
"Okay." replies the dog, "You have nine hundred sheep."
Moral of the Story: Intelligence is not always a plus for some types of jobs.