To Attract Rewards From People, Be Willing To Go An Extra Mile!


Two friends, Justin and Bob, joined a reputable company together just a few months after their graduation from the University of Ibadan.

Tapiwa Zuze

After a couple of years of work, their Manager, Taylor Menzies, promoted Justin to the position of Supervisor – Sales and Marketing, but Bob remained in his entry level position of Junior Sales Officer.

Bob developed a sense of jealousy and disgruntlement, but continued working anyway. One day he felt that he could not work with Justin anymore. He wrote his resignation letter, but before he submitted it to Taylor Menzies, he complained that the company’s senior management did not value hard working staff, but only promoted those they favoured.

The Manager knew that Bob had indeed worked very hard over the years he had spent at the company. Bo had worked even harder than Justin and therefore he deserved the promotion. So in order to help him to realise this, the Manager gave him a task.

“Bob, go and find out if anyone is selling water melons in town?” said Taylor Menzies. Bob went and returned with his feedback. “Yes there is someone!”

The Manager then asked, “How much per kg?”

Bob drove back to town to ask and then returned to inform his boss. “They are selling for ¥ 13.50 per kg”.

The Manager told him, “I will give your colleague Justin the same task that I gave you”.

So the Manager said to Justin, in the presence of Bob, “Go and find out if anyone is selling water melons in town?”

Justin went to find out and on his return gave the feedback report:

“Manager, there is only one person selling water melons in the whole town. The cost is ¥ 49.00 each water melon and ¥ 32.50 for a half melon. He sells them at ¥ 13.50 per kg when sliced. He has in his stock 94 water melons, each one weighing about 7 kg. He has a farm and can supply us with melons for the next 4 months at a rate of 100 melons per day at ¥ 27.00 per melon. This cost will include delivery to our factory here.

“The melons appear fresh and red with good quality, and they taste better than the ones we sold last year. He has his own slicing machine and is willing to slice for us free of charge. We need to strike a deal with him before 10 am tomorrow and we will be sure of beating last year's profits in melons by ¥ 223.00. This will contribute positively to our overall performance as it will add a minimum of 4% to our current overall sales target.

“I have put all this information down in writing and is available on spreadsheet. Please let me know if you need it as I can send it to you in fifteen minutes”.

Bob was very impressed and realised the difference between himself and his friend Justin. He decided not to resign but instead to learn from him.

Tapiwa Zuze

Let this story help us keep in mind the importance of going an extra mile in all our endeavours. You will not be rewarded for doing what you’re meant to do; you only get a salary for that. You begin to get rewards for going an extra mile. You have to perform beyond expectations in order to attract favour from people.

Be willing to be observant, proactive and willing to do more, think more, have a more holistic perspective and go beyond the call of duty.

Adopted and edited by:

Tapiwa Zuze –

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