Wednesday, 17 November 2021
Friday, 5 November 2021
Becoming a trusted advisor is not a walk in the park, especially if you live in a cold climate, a very hot climate, or there is no parking near the park in which you wish to walk.
Herein, I will spell out what I have done to become a trusted advisor to four of my most difficult of clients: our CEO Stan, our CFO Mr. Herr Krebbs, our R&D DireKtor Comrade Karl Marks, and to our nerd population, which are a random bunch of immigrants who eat spicy food, quarrel and whinge all the time.
The first principle is "positioning your communication". So, for example, when I cut 20% off compensation for "working at home" (teletrabajo) , I tell CEO Stan and Herr Krebbs that they will get more for less; I tell Comrade Karl that those nerds who have no home can work from the office, and I tell the nerds that they will be able to spend more time at home learning English from their offspring.
The second principle of becoming a trusted advisor is "never, almost never, betray trust". When I found out that CEO Stan was dipping his wick, as it were, I told his wife that he was working hard on tax issues with one of our auditors, Ms Bressler. When I saw Mister Herr Krebbs exiting a sado club, I greeted him on the fly and asked him what the dollar exchange rate is for the Euro. And when Comrade Karl went for a job interview for the Mossad, I asked him casually and by the way, if he thinks that getting paid in Israeli currency is a good idea, given the 3 mortgages he is paying his 5 ex-wives.
The third principle is becoming a trusted advisor is balancing between conflicting demands. Between honesty and stupidity; naivete and survival, daily and often; American and worldly; business and people; compensation and bankruptcy. I implement the balancing act especially well for our nerds. Eg- Our 360 degree feedback process is almost fully (60% minus 31) discrete. Eg-our "get a green card faster by working 3 years in one" is a huge success.
My Dad, Pierre Elliot Ramsbottom, used to say Stalin said a secret is something that two people know, and one of them is dead. So I beg of you-please don't share my professional secrets of success with too many people.
Friday, 29 October 2021
I arrived a bit late this morning. Kim Kim, my manicurist, was late for my 8 am appointment, but due to my humanism and her cut-throat prices, I did not throw a hissy-fit.
Just as I was giving over the key to my footman to park my car at 910 AM, a WhatsApp popped up. "We quit effective immediately". Signed- Svetlana, Svetlana, Igor, Svetlana, Sanjay, Igor, Sanjay, Igor, Sanjay, Maya, Helen, and Paco."
Oh my, thought I, this hype about resignation has become reality. I need to get my coach on the phone. But my coach was meditating in Pune India, learning about the meaning of life without a mobile.
Upon entering the floor space of R&D, I was surprised to see all the nerds who had resigned, hard at work. Comrade Karl, our chief nerd, was handing out new passports, new T shirts, new laptops and a button which read "We work for Comrade Karl Technology: Screw HR, US Imperialism, and Intrinsic Motivation".
Comrade Karl told me, "actually, no one quit, Gloria; we are reconfiguring the work place along class lines".
My phone rang and it was CEO Stan on the line; "have you gone mad, Gloria? Getting your nails done whilst Rome burns and Comrade Karl plays his violin...or something like that".
I know that CEO Stan got confused with old Nero, who fiddled while Rome burnt. That's basic Classics 101.
I ordered in 15 pizzas with double cheese and peperoni, no anchovies and a case of Stella beer. I asked Miss Axe to prepare a few fresh-smelling green cards and stack them up.
And the mass resignation came tumbling down.
Sunday, 24 October 2021
Our diversity chief Hugh White ran into my room, his white face whiter than ever. He looked like a real guilo, a word that not all my readers may know.
Hugh: "Our new English speaking nerd, Penelope, confronted me with an issue which I must refer to you, in line with the avoid making mistakes core value you have inculcated." What a word!
When Hugh entered my room, I had been texting my sister for the last 4 hours, so I was ready to and able to lend young Hugh a helping hand. This is in line with my core values of "lending a helping hand." However, first I said, "Hugh, what is Penelope's ask that has you so upset?"
Hugh generally rambles, hems and haws, dithers and beats around the proverbial bush when he explains things. Yet this time, he was crisp and clear: "Penelope claims that either Comrade Carl or one of his sleazy nerds may harass her in the distant future and she wants to lodge a complaint that has future preventive validity."
I asked Hugh how long young Penelope has been working with us, and he told me that she had not yet started working. As a matter of fact, this had all happened in a recruitment conference call; Penelope is still in Gibraltar, where she is "checking her options".
Stunned, I asked Hugh what he thinks our options are. After all, I train people how to think. Hugh surprised me. "Gloria, I think that Penelope could work in finance, hedging currencies. Mister Herr Krebbs certainly won't harass her, as he is very busy after hours with Fraulein Astrid, from his accounts payable team".
I was shocked at Hugh's answer. Then I remembered that even a broken clock is right twice a day, or even three times if travelling east. I complimented Hugh, "Good thinking, White boy".
Hugh bowed his knee and kissed my ring, even though I was not wearing one. "I have learned all I know from you and your blockchain. No one can get ahead of you, Great One"-and he left my room on all fours careful not to ruffle my pride.
Friday, 8 October 2021
Recently, our chief nerd Comrade Karl Marks, has been reading left wing rags and benchmarking product development in the pharma industry. The reasons for this are clear.
In our last management meeting, CEO Stan asked Comrade Karl "why we cannot have a billion users of our new product suite if everyone is taking a vaccine that is being tested on the fly. Why don't you develop products like that?"
I believe that CEO Stan asked that question because hemorrhoids flared up for 6 days after his 3rd shot.
In today's management meeting (in which Tasters Choice coffee and Scottish shortbread biscuits were served), Comrade Karl made the following statement looking straight into Stan's eyes whilst Stan was sending a text.
"Jefe (Italian for boss) you have a point. I have instructed our engineers to cease and desist from working on the final mile of each product. Hitherto and forthwith, we shall download and outsource the "final mile development phase" to our clients themselves, and provide our clients with a help desk via a chat bot or Whatsapp-based agent."
Our German CFO, Mr Herr Krebbs, asked for more details. Being Teutonic, Krebbs is a details man. Furthermore, Mr Herr Krebbs asked for the revenue model for the support desk. I mentioned that we cannot ask clients to pay for a product that we ourselves are developing. I have a MBA from McGill in Canada.
Comrade Karl attacked me.
"Kibinimat, that's where you are wrong Gloria. You are living in the stone age, along with your outdated HR lackeys. The world is based on shadow work, where vendors work the ass of their clients to download to them pesky issues so that the smart guys like us can go on to bigger and better things".
Then Karl, with condescending charity suggested that "initially, you can outsource the support desk to a few new mothers working from home via teletrabajo, to supplement their husbands' income. They don't need to be technical. Just nice voices. Over time, I will help you "scale up" their technical skills."
CEO Stan, whose bum was itching due to his affliction, said, "that's a good idea. What's the next item on the agenda. I don't want to get behind in our work".
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