Saturday, 27 April 2013

Office memo

To:  Tall and Dark

Cc:   Handsome



You come under the collective banner of "the men in my life". One way or another, I spend a considerable part of my waking life either talking with you or doing something with you in mind. There are days when I feel that I've acquired two more husbands: Tall and Dark (I'm married to Handsome). You two are my "office husbands", to listen to, cajole and worry over as necessary.  I do appreciate being your sounding board. And I'm very fond of you both. (Right now, with all the changes that have gone on at work, I feel like I've also acquired an office "Dad" - our new Commercial Director who is responding to things in a bewildered, "Father of the Bride" kind of way.)

How did it all get to be so complicated?  I remember at Christmas telling Tall that, daunting as the learning curve was, I'd loved every minute of the months since we'd changed regions and "long may it continue".  I was considerably more involved  in supporting Tall and it was fun.  I did wonder how long it would last before something came along to spoilt it all because, as I said then, "I'm not that lucky". And I'm not.  Turns out, the answer was less than six months.

It's been an interesting month since Tall, Dark and I met in Manchester (the "three amigos").  I can't talk about most of it on a blog - that would be both unwise and unfair - but I think that, if he is allowed, Dark will become a worthy successor to Tall in his (former) Commercial Director role.  While I have a very similar relationship with Dark as I do with Tall, unfortunately, Dark hasn't been allowed to take over all of Tall's role. (It's been split, which is how we acquired Dad.) But, just as I did with Tall, I anticipate finding myself sitting on a hotel bed in the late evening somewhere in Glasgow, in my best Dana Scully mode, typing up debriefs to Dark on my laptop:  downloading my brain into an email, setting out who said what and why, and trying to identify the relevant (and the logic) in what was discussed during a day of meetings.

I can't thank you enough, Tall and Dark, for the glimpses you've given me into the commercial aspects of running our business.  Since our business had no financial management support until I came along 2.5 years ago, the majority of your colleagues just view Finance as transactional with nothing else to offer (and that includes your big boss).  You know I've tried to change that - and you've tried to help me - but it's been like being stuck outside an invisible force-field, watching but unable to hear or participate in what is occurring inside.  Dad was certainly of that view when he took over his new role, but you have both tried to persuade him that it is a mistake to exclude me. It may be working - at least he's decided we need regular, fortnightly meetings.  We'll see what happens with them.

Will Dad succeed in his new job?  I don't know.  He seems to look at me (and you two, too), like a father confronted with his teen-aged children, wondering what-on-earth they're talking about.  He hears the words, but they aren't making sense at the moment.  Can we help him to understand?  I hope so.  But he has to put us in a position where we can help him.  Keep me or Dark out of the information loop and there's not a lot we can do to save him when he starts to drown.

Only time will tell.

- Pam