A boss I had once bought a beautiful Mercedes coup. I told her what a beautiful car it was. She said, “Well you know that if you work harder, work overtime and spent every weekend here, I could actually get the car I really want”.
That’s kind of the way it works, isn’t it? Did we learn nothing from the movie “9 – 5”? In different jobs I would see the kind of cars the bosses drove and the clothes they wore. I’ll admit that many of them worked long and hard enough to earn those material treasures while others just “brown nosed” themselves to the top.
In one case, I became an executive at a very large cellular telephone company. My job was to turn a public utility into a retailer. A very daunting task. Retail was the obvious distribution channel and they didn’t know how to get it done so they hired me because of my early background in consumer electronics with Circuit City.
I wasn’t sure I could pull it off but they paid me well, including a generous car allowance. Did I go buy a new car? No. I kept my older car and made money on the deal. It took two and a half years of battling people stuck in their ways to get the job done, but I did it. I got a huge promotion but still lived in the same place and drove the same car.
Some time later, I was in a directors meeting where there was a debate about requiring a four year degree to get in to an entry level position. I argued vehemently against it. Finally one of the VPs asked me why I was so opposed to the idea. I said, “If that rule already existed, I wouldn’t be here”. You could hear a career drop.
They were stunned and asked me if I had a degree. “Yes”, I said. “A two year degree in theology”. Things were never the same after that. I was excluded from all other Directors meetings. My goose was cooked. I still think they made a big mistake but one of my clients offered me more money to run their cellular department, so it was OK.
Now I was in the drivers seat because I was now a client and I knew all of their tricks. I made things very difficult for them as often as possible, which was kind of mean, I guess. But I felt wronged considering all that I had accomplished for them. They deserved any grief that I sent their way.
Revenge is sometimes sweet.
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