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The Nice Guy Essay

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Maybe he’ll say he’s ? nally ready to pass me the baton. out a way to ? nalize the data. Who was helping you out, Lynne or Aaron? … Neither? Ugh. All right, all right. Call me when you’re on your way in to the of? ce, OK? See ya. ” [Hangs up. ] Damn. This totally messes up my morning. Now I’ll have to try to hack my way through the spreadsheet before the meeting. I can’t imagine what it’s like taking care of a parent with a terminal illness. How awful. But Lisa’s really slipping. She was such a go-getter and a great operations manager, but her focus has been shot since her mother got sick.

Instead, he was starting a “new media” company. The notion of leaving a great job at TRH and joining his team was the furthest thing from my mind, yet the crazy guy pitched me so hard I couldn’t resist. And he was right. He knew that companies would need a strategic partner that could provide creative ideas in all media – print, radio, TV, and “that information superhighway I keep hearing about. ”Daner was going to be that partner. We’ve had our ups and downs, but it’s been an incredible ride. Up from ? ve people to over a hundred, a client list that boasts some of the biggest companies in the world.

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And the best part is, it’s just the beginning. Larry is still a tiger, but he’s getting a bit tired and wants to golf. I can’t blame him for that. It’s de? nitely time for him to retire. Lately I could swear he’s been doing the nudge-nudge, winkwink in my direction. George thinks he’s in the running too, but I think he’ll be cool with reporting to me. Wonder: Once I’m CEO, should I put George in charge of our European expansion? A footprint in Europe will make us even more indispensable to our clients. It will make us a global leader, not just a domestic shop. George has done well under Larry for the past two years.

He was pretty psyched about his promotion to VP of business development. He’s great on the technical end of things, but he still needs more polish and experience with customers. He is feisty, though–always willing to take on anything. And he’ll challenge Larry at the drop of a hat. I’m surprised Larry puts up with it and doesn’t chop him off at the knees. Still, when it comes to people, Larry can really be so hard-nosed. His take- no-prisoners attitude is understandable when bidding on business but not when it comes to people. Like when Larry said Lisa’s become a liability lately; he even hinted about replacing her.

Ugh. Lay off Lisa? I can barely think the words, let alone say them to her. She’s always been my right arm. She usually knows what I’m thinking even before I do. Sure, Jim or Andrea could eventually handle the role of operations manager, but there’s a steep learning curve. Note to self: Have another heart-to-heart with Lisa to discuss the possibility of reducing her workload for a while–or maybe see how she’d feel about taking a leave of absence that would let her focus on her mom. I really want the old Lisa back. 7:38 AM Passing Edgewater Park on the Shoreway This traf? c is ridiculous. If I leave by 6:00, I’m golden.

But if I wait until after 6:30 to wake Sheila and the kids on my way out, I’m hosed. At least today I get to see an amazing sunrise. Bonus. Man, I could jog faster than this. I remember all those brainstorming jogs with Larry along the lake. It was great to compare notes and talk about the future. For an old guy, he did pretty well – up until his heart attack three years ago. I almost lost it last week when he said that he was going to start jogging again – and he’s aiming to run the Boston Marathon in April. Please, Larry, stick with golf and sailing! It’ll be fun to blow him away with the strategy and the numbers.

It’s been a ton of work preparing for this, but now we’re ready. We can mobilize quickly once he gives us the green light. I’m a little surprised that he’s stayed away from our recent planning sessions. I thought he’d want to provide some feedback and direction. Perhaps it’s his way of pulling back and empowering me before handing me the reins. So, the million-dollar question is: What will he say? I think I know the answer. He’ll love the bottom line–that he can golf and sail as much as he wants. He’ll like his new chairman-only role so that he can step away from the dayharvard business review

Between you and me, I’m not totally ruling out compromise, but you need to push back. Remind them how much business we’ve given them over the years, and remember we’re talking about a big chunk of change here. Besides, they should have caught the mistake. You can do this, Justin. Keep me posted. ” I can’t believe this. More problems? Abbe Printing had to redo the whole thing because of their mistake, and now that rep Randy is trying to convince Justin that Daner should split the cost of the reprint with them? Forget it! I can’t stand it when people try to take advantage. I grew up in a print shop, for cryin’ out loud.

Gimme a break! Justin does have a point, though. The murky print specs Lisa prepared on that job created a bit of a gray area in terms of culpability, but still – we give Abbe dozens of jobs a year. Over $2 million in revenues, I’ll bet! We could be hardnosed on this. Sticking us with a bill like this just doesn’t feel right. Still…maybe there’s room for compromise. I know that Randy is a good guy, and besides, they’ve gone above and beyond the call of duty for us many times. I really don’t want to torch that vendor relationship. a little after the kids go to school.

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