Get What You Want – Don’t Be A Wise Monkey!

Share this:

Get What You Want – Don’t Be A Wise Monkey!

Simon Wallace | 12th March 2015

“see no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil”

The three wise monkeys and this proverb are known throughout Asia and in the Western world! [1].

The images make everyone smile but rarely do any of us take note of the message given by their pose emphasizing their refusal to acknowledge the evidence at odds with their individual principles.

Get What You Want – Don’t Be A Wise Monkey!

I remember as a child being called ‘a little monkey’, being told by adults to ‘speak when I was spoken to’ and that ‘manners maketh man’ but not how to develop assertive behaviour, which has been frustrating and I feel, hindered my progress in my early career.

Manners do maketh man (this has always stood me in good stead) but see everything, listen intently and don’t wait to be spoken to but speak freely when you feel you have something valuable to say.

Assertive behaviour means getting what you want without hurting other’s feelings. This is a life skill that all great leaders already have or work hard to develop.

Don’t Be A Wise Monkey – Get What You Want!

When was your last ‘wise monkey’ moment?


[1] Wolfgang Mieder. 1981. “The Proverbial Three Wise Monkeys,” Midwestern Journal of Language and Folklore, 7: 5- 38.

Image – “Three wise monkeys figure” by Tumi-1983 – Own work. Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons –

About the Author

Simon Wallace is founder of The Whole Thing Group and passionate about performance improvement. Creative entrepreneur and trusted advisor to some great companies that are achieving great things.

Share this:
No Comments

Post A Comment