MANY years ago, as a young man, I sat on the board of an organization which was planning a huge function in the city and for which they had sent invitations to members all across the country. It was important to have the maximum number of members attending along with their wives.
“We have booked rooms in the hotel for a hundred guests”, said the president,” and we have got only thirty confirmation.” There was dismay on all our faces, till I stuttered and stammered out an idea, “Why don’t we send a letter to the wives of the members, telling them their husbands need a break, that he can meet all his old friends at the two day function and for them, the wives, we have arranged a special shopping spree and a gala time?”
The president was very happy, “Brilliant”, he said, “let’s do it”. It was a month later the same board sat with the same members and with the same look of dismay on their faces. “The whole function was a disaster”, said the new president looking at the old president, who looked angrily at me, the youngest board member.
“I have something to say” I said, “When I made out the letter and gave it to you, it was supposed to be sent to the wives of the members wasn’t it?” “Yes”, said the former president, “What a silly idea it was!” “No, it wasn’t!” I persisted as I pulled an envelope out of my pocket, “this is one of the letters that was sent and it is addressed not to the wife, but to the husband. Your secretary I assume did the same to all the other letters?”
The members gasped and turned to the former president, who put his head down, “I forgot to check”, he said simply, “I also forgot to tell her to put Mrs. before each name!” A small mistake, just three tiny letters and a good idea bit the dust!
The great sculptor Michal Angelo was once at work on one of his statues when a friend dropped by to see him and said, “I can’t see any difference in the statue since I came here a week ago, “Have you not been doing any work during the week?”
“Yes, I have”, said the sculptor, “I have retouched this part, softened this feature, strengthened this muscle and put more life into that limb”. “But those are only small trifles”, said his friend. “True”, said the great Michael Angelo, “but trifles make perfection and perfection is no trifle..!”.