Our family country house built by my late father has a story of his thinking and leadership.
Read time: just over a min.
One of the most crucial life-line of the estate was the construction of a groundwater well.
Building a fifteen feet wide in diameter and hundreds of feet deep stonewalled well that stands firm even today for decades was no easy undertaking. Besides the risks that come with such constructions, it was extra challenging due to the land porosity.
Tons of sand had to be excavated, and the walls had to be lined with scaffolding to hold the earth as the hard stone bricks were placed around the well. Everything was going as planned when –
One fateful night, the site was hit by heavy rainfall, and the scaffolding gave way, and the dirt around the upper layers of the wall poured back inside the giant hole. To understand the damage’s enormity, imagine tons of sand and dirt dug up one day and ran right back in the next. It was a significant setback. Weeks of hard labour got wiped in just a few hours.
My father had an easy option to hold the contractor accountable for the mishap and have them redo the work; after all, it was their responsibility to ensure the scaffolding was placed well.
It was an easy choice for my father and not much of choice for the contractor.
My father’s point of view, however, was that the incident was unintentional and couldn’t have been avoided due to the heavy rain and the earth’s porosity even if the scaffolding was done right.
The rework was a financial drain for my father. He had to borrow money at high interest to keep the work going.
The work continued and progressed with even better speed than before. The workers were extra careful and meticulous after the incident.
Months later, the water well was complete.
The water well constructed over four decades ago is still in its pristine state. It continues to nourish hundreds of trees, vegetation and a few surrounding households.
Glimpsing down a deep well is not for the faint of heart. But, I believe it must have been heart-wrenching for my father to make that decision.
It wasn’t easy but it was right.
We all make mistakes; after all, we are humans. We expect others to be patient with our missteps, but we are very unforgiving of others’ mistakes and often take a heavy-handed approach.
It’s not what we do always, but what we don’t do that matters.
Thank you for sharing some of your precious time with me each week. Leave a comment if you liked it.
Until next week.