Thursday, July 12, 2007

Not Safe for Clients

occasionally my job requires me to quit surfing the net for porn & puppies and do something which might be construed as meaningful (adam's word) if not to me, then at least to The Man. so yesterday i took a field trip with a handful of my dunder-mifflin compatriots to pitch some big ideas.

i'm stealing one last look at danny lohner's myspace when the Mayor wanders by.
- shouldn't you guys have left by now?
- yeah.
- so you're late.
- yeah. that's part of our brand. - we have just completed a torturous rebranding exercise. no grass, but we've all got embedded RFID chips now - being late is one of our differentiators.

when we finally arrive, we sign in and clump awkwardly in the cavernous main lobby as we await our sponsor.

- look finn, this security system should be no problem for you - P, our high-powered consultant observes. i swivel to examine the entry she's referencing, expecting to see weenie guards P assumes i can overpower, or tall turnstiles she expects i can leap in a single bound. but there are no guards or turnstiles, only channels with red and green lights.

- no turnstiles - P confirms, and turns to the rest of the group to clarify - see, finn has a habit of getting stuck in turnstiles and revolving doors - that is true - and as a result she's been classed as a security risk with [that big pharma firm downtheroad] - that is true too - which means she needs an escort. i didn't know this but it explains why i haven't been invited to any of the status meetings out there.

what P doesn't mention is that i once got HER stuck in a revolving door. she was mid-revolution when i charged into the next cell without scanning my badge first. the whole door came screeching to a halt and P lurched into the glass. she left a big face print and almost broke her nose. then we had to shuffle backwards so the door could barf us back to where we started.

now she lets me go first through the dangerous stuff and periodically reminds me of my past sins. it's a good reality check, though -- you may think you're hot shit, going to worlds and all, but you can't be all that and a bag of chips if a revolving door can defeat you.


addon said...

Great story finn once more. You have the knack of catching the inane posturing that typifies these presentations, in fact most business dealings that I remember. Like the bit about security, why am I not surprised you are classed as a security risk .... ?? Also lateness being a differentiator is an excellent innovation full marks for that one.

I bet I have been to more presentations than you have had cooked dinners. One that sticks in my memory 'cos it was a rare win for Adam was for the commission to manage the redevelopment of a major hospital - hard core project management. This was in the days when we went lo-tech, no PowerPoint garbage thank the lord, we had A2-sized bits of board on which we made these mind-bogglingly impressive statements about our wonderfulness. I had prepared these display cards without consulting my boss who was/is (if he is still alive and no-one has topped him) a total jerk. In these days I was right into the people-management thing, all about relationships, anathema to the boss who had left a string of dysfunctional and shattered personal ones in his wake. So that is what the boards showed. I had "three-dimensions of relationships" (good grief!) ... all sorts of wonderfully different stuff. He asked to see them as we met before leaving (I worked in a different office) and the wild trapped look in his eyes when he saw them gladdened my heart. He, a total dag, dragged along with a doomed look on his face and afterwards confided that he just wanted to slide under the table at the performance (at which I habitually took the lead role).

Naturally, the two interviewers, a couple of women, lapped up my fine words as I waved my hands around talking about all this relationship stuff and me being so magnetic and personable we got the job of course. Oh didn't I gloat about that one. After that fine episode and display of Adam's brilliance he always looked at me in a different, sort of wary way. The bastard.

There is another story about waving my hands around at a presentation, dramatis personae including my new girlfriend, her husband and the town mayor. But we can go into that one another day ...

Oh and the revolving door thing. Never mind, it is a mark of genius to be a bit dumb about the small things of life.

finn said...

adam, you obv have the Spirit Fingers down pat. do you give lessons?

i seem to recall a story about an awkward menage a trois between you, a thespian and the woman you'd just lured away. the coffee flew, did it not??

perhaps the Fingers were Too Spirited that day.

addon said...

hey!! you've got a real good memory ... the coffee did fly.

Brown Suga' said...

Getting stuck in revolving doors is kinda cute. Cut yourself some slack, girl!