Information Systems
College of Business Administration
University of Missouri - St. Louis

The Summer Bug and the Grasshopper

Once there lived a summer bug and a grasshopper in a grassy meadow. All day long the summer bug would work hard, collecting grains of wheat from the farmer's field far away. She would hurry to the field every morning, as soon as it was light enough to see by, and toil back with a heavy grain of wheat balanced on her head. She would put the grain of wheat carefully away in her larder, and then hurry back to the field for another one. All day long she would work, without stop or rest, scurrying back and forth from the field, collecting the grains of wheat and storing them carefully in her larder.

The grasshopper would look at her and laugh. 'Why do you work so hard, dear summer bug?' he would say. 'Come, rest awhile, and listen to my song. Summer is here, the days are long and bright. Why waste the sunshine in labor and toil?'

The summer bug would ignore him, and head bent, would just hurry to the field a little faster. This would make the grasshopper laugh even louder. 'What a silly little summer bug you are!' he would call after her. 'Come, come and dance with me! Forget about work! Enjoy the summer! Live a little!' And the grasshopper would hop away across the meadow, singing and dancing merrily.

Summer faded into fall, and fall turned into winter. The sun was hardly seen, and the days were short and grey, the nights long and dark. It became freezing cold, and snow began to fall.

The grasshopper didn't feel like singing any more. He was cold and hungry. He had no place to shelter from the snow, and nothing to eat. The meadow and the farmer's field were covered in snow, and there was no food to be had. 'Oh what shall I do? Where shall I go?' wailed the grasshopper. Suddenly he remembered the summer bug. 'Ah - I shall go to the summer bug and ask her for food and shelter!' declared the grasshopper, perking up. So off he went to the summer bug's house and knocked at her door. 'Hello summer bug!' he cried cheerfully. 'Here I am, to sing for you, as I warm myself by your fire, while you get me some food from that larder of yours!'

The summer bug looked at the grasshopper and said, 'All summer long I worked hard while you made fun of me, and sang and danced. You should have thought of winter then! Find somewhere else to sing, grasshopper! There is no warmth or food for you here!' And the summer bug shut the door in the grasshopper's face.

Moral: It is wise to worry about tomorrow today. The summer bug toils away all year storing food for the winter. When the first snow comes the summer bug reaps the rewards of his planning while the grasshopper is, quite literally, left out in the cold. The wise project manager see their role as a strategic guide: figuring out how to get projects done more efficiently so the whole team works more efficiently. The project manager must ensure that much more money, time and effort are spent on requirements. This will save them time, money, and embarrassment later. As we know that over 50 percent of all projects fail to deliver on time, to the right quality, and to the right budget (in costs and schedule).

These stories are adapted examples written in my class, IS 6840 (formerly MSIS 488).
© Vicki L. Sauter. All rights Reserved.

| UM-St. Louis Home Page | College of Business Page | IS Home Page | Analysis Home Page |

Page Owner: Professor Sauter (

© Vicki L. Sauter. All rights Reserved.