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Poking Fun at the Boss #2

At the technology newsletter company, we enjoyed great success, and were soon bought out by a much larger publishing firm. This firm was located in New York, and brought with the purchase signficant resources, particularly benefits.

As with any other meeting at this company, we expected food, and the management met this expectation with a buffet-style lunch in the open area behind our building. As we gathered to hear the presentation of how our benefits would change, I noticed that Scott, the big-company rep in from New York, was talking to our current President, Tom. I decided to have a bit of fun at his expense.

I walked up, looked at my watch and said, “Tom, it’s nearly 12:30. Kinda late in the day for you to still be here isn’t it?”

Tom’s face paled, but Scott laughed. With “Thanks a lot, Tim” from Tom, I moved on, had my lunch, and learned of the wonderful benefits that awaited us.

When I got back to my desk, there was an e-mail message in my in-box from Kim, our CFO. Now Kim was a perfectly nice person, but she was generally focused on business issues (as most CFO’s are). Because of this, my heart sank when I read the title of the message:

“Your Last Day”

I cautiously opened the message to read:


Tom has informed me that today will be your last day with our company. To that effect, I have arranged for an exit interview with Carla in HR at 3:00 this afternoon. Please let me know if you have any questions.



I was speechless. I hurried to Tom’s office, but it was dark. I asked the secretary where he was and heard, “Tom’s headed to the airport to catch a flight to San Francisco. He’ll be back next Monday.”

“Monday???” I was in a panic. Had I gone too far? Was it a joke? Would Kim participate in such a leg-pulling stunt?

I decided to go back to my desk and pretend I hadn’t read the mail. I intentionally avoided talking to anyone else, and especially avoided Kim. The next day though, I slipped, and walked down her hallway. Recognizing my error, I passed her quickly without looking directly at her. Feeling relieved I was about to turn the corner when I heard, “Tim?”

It was Kim’s voice.

I stopped. I turned around, acted innocent, and said, “Yes?”

“Did you get my e-mail?” she asked pleasantly.

“Uh… uhm… well, yes… as a matter of fact I did” I replied.

She smiled broadly and said, “Good. Tom said you’d enjoy it.”

Finally feeling the sweet bliss of relief, I smiled back and said, “Oh yeah… I laughed and laughed.” Returning to my office, I collapsed into a heap. Somewhere, I recalled hearing, “The boss always has the last laugh.”

It’s true.


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