Either that, or I’m a good candidate for mood stabilizers.
In any case, my boss and I finally talked. It wasn’t a slam dunk, and I’m still without a clear sense of what will come to pass, but I feel better. We’re at an impasse, but I saw weakness in his eyes.
He’s still in a “really, really hoping I won’t go” mode, but is relieved I haven’t quit. For all his arguments, “It will be so hard for you to work while you’re traveling,” I had counter arguments, “I was VP of a bank AND did an MBA full-time. This will be easy in comparison.”. “I just don’t know that it would work” = “Give me a chance to prove you wrong.”
I will follow up in a week or so with a reinforcement of “I’m going and here are the options”:
1. Deduct my remaining vacation time (3 weeks, 3 days) even though I’m working
2. I’ll take a pay cut for the period if my work is sub-par.
3. If my work is REALLY sub-par, fire me.
To a small degree, how well this plays depends on what happens next Friday when he meets to iron out the exact agenda for the big deal presentation in late November. If things go one way, he needs me. If another, maybe not so much, and I could be looking at a leave of absence situation or even resigning.
He kept saying, “We can’t do all this work without you,” and “I was so worried you were going to quit.” I think we can work this out. I was asked tonight if that’s what I *really* want – to work while I’m on this trip – and I feel that I do, on my terms. I don’t view this trip as a vacation so much as a journey – emotionally, physically, metaphysically – and I think having “real” work to do is a good, grounding thing. I’ll apply my 4-Hour Workweek principles, and with any luck it’ll all work out!
Meanwhile, I had a very long day today. as I had to ride for five hours with a coworker I call The Weirdo. He’s not a bad guy, he’s just super strange and awkward and stares at you for a really, really long time before answering basic questions. He’s the kind of guy that makes you feel awkward and uncomfortable in 3.2 seconds flat. Actually, having spent extended time with him today, I realized he’s a lot like the Rick Moranis character in Ghostbusters, only not as charming. If he speaks at all, it’s a big run-on sentence of humorless nerdy thoughts spilling out rapidly and in one big rush. Some of my other co-workers were e-mailing me some funny advice, such as “If you run out things to talk about, bring up NASCAR and tell him you don’t think it should be considered a ‘real’ sport.”
All in all, I guess it wasn’t so bad. Here’s a brief recap:
* Silent drive
* Strange dinner companion
* Definitely the low point was when it came time to exchange business cards with the CEO we’d dined with, and he hadn’t brought any. I had to give him a pen and some of mine and he sat there furiously scribbling out my info and writing in his own. It looked like a Rorschach inkblot test when he was done.
But, as always, tomorrow is a brand new day! TGIF!!!
It hasn’t happened yet, but if anyone ever decides to search for a blog under the category “general bitching” they are going to hit the motherlode!