After suffering thirteen arduous years of persecution and untold suffering, the believers left their homes and livelihood behind and migrated to a foreign city, carrying nothing but their deep faith with them.
The Leader stayed back of course, till the last of them were safely away from the reach of the sword points of the aggressors. And then he followed suit, leaving behind his motherland and the immense riches that would have come to him if he had complied with the irresistible offers of his enemies…. “Even if you give me the sun in my right hand, and the moon in my left, I would continue on this path till either I perish or god’s will succeed”- he had said.
The aggressors weren’t satisfied with the cleansing. They launched assault after assault. Yet they couldn’t obliterate the small band of believers. And then, they decided on an all out final attack. Truces were made with all the tribes of Arabia and an army, whose likes were never, ever seen before was raised and this huge column was getting ready to march to Medina….
The Prophet (PBUH) and his followers were busy praying and planning. One day he decided to travel to a neighboring tribe of polyethiests to request for their neutrality. He met their chieftain and after promising him to hand over half the fruits and crops of Medina, the tribe agreed to stay neutral in the conflict. As the prophet returned, he remembered that he had taken this decision unilaterally without consulting the amir of Medina, who had the rightful say in this matter. Though he was the unchallenged leader of the whole city, he went to the Amir and informed him of the decision.
Contrary to his expectations, the amir disagreed with the prophet’s action. He said “When we were weak and small, we never made concessions with the unjust disbelievers. Why should we do it now, that we are bigger and stronger?”
The prophet could very well have enforced his decision and even the Amir would have complied. But being the leader that he was, he accepted the Amir’s argument and went back to the tribe and revoked the truce.
Let us ask ourselves. As Managers, how often do we change our plans and decisions based on the inputs of our subordinates?
Our reluctance to do so might very well be one reason why we don’t have inspired followers who tell us – “show us the open sea and we would jump into it till the last man”