Rene, my friend and former colleague at Partners International, tells a wonderful story to illustrate the importance of creative solutions to urgent problems … and humility.

Two birds and a frog were going about their business when they noticed a fire moving in their direction. Alarmed, the frog asked the birds what they would do to save themselves. The birds responded that they would fly away. Now frightened, the frog asked, “What will I do?”

The birds were sympathetic to the frog’s situation and offered, “If you have an idea about how we can help you, let us know.” In his desperation the frog devised a plan. He asked the birds to each carry an end of a stick in their mouths while he held onto the middle of it with his mouth.

The birds took off with the frog swinging from the stick between them. The plan was working! All three were headed to safety until they passed high over some people who exclaimed, “That’s great! Whose idea was that?”

The frog said, “Mine…” and plummeted┬áto his death.