Saturday, April 11, 2009

Tales from Megaconglomeration, Inc.’s smallest division. Chapter 1



Chapter 1. The New Boss

Richard Small entered his new offices for the first time. Looking around like the Master of the Universe he knew he was, surveying the magnificent ten by fifteen space (with its own paper shredder), he said aloud “Finally, I’ve made it.”

Just then one of his new servants---damn, team members, gotta remember that, team members---cleared her throat behind him. “Excuse me Mr. Small. Is it a good time?”

“Sure uh, uh, …”

“Molly, Sir. I’m your new assistant. We met yesterday. And also the day before. I just wanted to let you know that if there’s anything I can do for you, just let me know. My extension is highlighted on your phone, and my cubicle is just down the hall.”

“Thank you Holly,” he said, looking her up and own critically. No wonder he didn’t remember her. Couldn’t they have given him a better looking secretary? She had to be less than 5 feet tall, and 90 pounds soaking wet. No T&A to speak of. Well, as long as she can get coffee and pick up his dry cleaning, who cares what she looked like. Besides, there was that goth-looking chick in advertising, blue and red hair, now she would…

“No problem sir,” she said, interrupting his fantas…er…train of thought. “Just let me know what you need and I’ll be happy to help out. Will you require anything special for your first staff meting at two?”

Shit. He forgot about that. Well, he figured it couldn’t hurt to get to know something about the product he will be marketing. “No Polly. Just let me know where the room is, and I’ll be there.”

“Will do, sir. I’ll come and get you at 1:55.”

“Very well,” he said, as he turned his back to her and entered his palatial office, her footsteps fading into the distance.

He sat down behind his new desk, in the big high-backed leather chair, put his hands behind his head and leaned back. Like that scene from Scarface he always loved. If only he had a cigar, it would be perfect, he thought. Well, that and Michelle Pfeifer.

Much like a dog takes to a tree, he decided to make the office his. First things first. The MAJOR AWARDS. He always capitalized the words in his head. They deserved to be. They were, well, MAJOR.

Looking around he saw bookshelves which would be perfect to showcase his achievements. After all, he was the marketing genius who turned around several product lines, gaining in some cases one half of one percent more market share. That’s why they made him CEO of this failing division, whose name he kept forgetting. He just remembered it had something to do with sex. Shit, a marketer who couldn’t sell sex should be shot and left for dead, thought Small. He looked forward to great achievements in Megaconglomeration’s sex division.

Whoever the old CEO was, he was damn sloppy, thought Small. He left a tons of books on the bookshelf. Damn inconsiderate.

Small went into the hall and yelled “Holly!”

“Coming, sir!”

“Holly,” he said as she entered. “Can you get me that big blue garbage pail I saw near the bathroom?”

“You mean the recycle pail? The one for white paper only?”

“I guess. Just bring it in here and leave it just outside the door. You can come pick it up in 10 minutes.”

“Yes sir,” she said as she walked away.

Small began opening his boxes of MAJOR AWARDS and laying them out on the desk. All his achievements will soon be out for these envious underlings to see, he thought. They are bound to be impressed.

His fantasies of adulation were interrupted once again by Polly’s dragging the blue pail to the door. Good, it was about 5 feet tall and there was still room left in it.

“Thanks Holly,” he said turning his back to her

“No problem, sir,” she said while breathing heavily. He smiled to himself, thinking how she was already worked up for him. She must have seen him bending over to pick up the box. That usually does it. He didn’t spend 2 hours a day in the gym for nothing. Buns of steel, baby!

He opened the garbage pail and began clearing off HIS bookshelves. Hundreds of books and magazines were dumped into the pail. God, what a mess. No wonder the last CEO was a failure. It looks like he spent his whole day reading some sort of hardcover comic book series.

Having cleared away the last guy’s distractions, he shut the office door. He always liked a bit of privacy when handling his MAJOR AWARDS. It was an intimate moment for him. Almost like touching the real world manifestation of his massive raw talent and abilities. The fruits of the exertion of his indomitable will and understanding of human nature on the world. Much like the Greek Gods, Small Shrugged, and these awards are the result.

He always liked to arrange them autobiographically. It helped (him) when he told war stories about his branding achievements to have them laid out sequentially.

First, of course, the award he received from turning around Undi-Dry. Some made fun of him for getting an MBA from Yale and then taking a position at Megaconglomeration’s diapers for old people division, but he showed them. His achievements there were legendary. In one fell swoop, he did a massive rebranding of the company, and increased their marketshare .017%.

They mocked him when he told them that the sum total of the rebranding would be changing the name of the brand from Undidry to Undi-Dry, but his work obviously paid off. It’s easier for old people to read 2 smaller words than one big word, he thought, so why not use a hyphen? He lovingly held the reward for that brilliant bit of insight in his hands. A bronzed pair of Undi-Dry undergarments. The one-millionth pair produced. Just the thought of it brought a tear to his eye.

His thoughts were once again interrupted by Polly, as he heard her grunting and groaning while pulling the blue pail down the hallway. He soon heard more voices, and figured she must have asked for help. Off to a bad start, he thought, shirking her responsibilities on his first day here. Not a way to make a good first impression.

After placing his other awards on the shelves, he turned to his desk. Well, at least the guy cleaned the desk out well enough. There were only 2 things in there. One was a thick document titled “Detailed Overview of the Role Playing Game Industry and Swords and Monster’s Place in the Industry. Contains Competitive Analysis, Market Conditions, and MOST IMPORTANTLY an Understanding of our Customers Needs and Desires. APPENDIX: History of the RPG Hobby, and S&M’s Leadership Role and Responsibilities.”

Small shrugged, and stuck it in the paper shredder. It obviously applied to some other company. Though the S&M part tugged at his memory for a second.

The other item in the drawer was a velvet bag with six funny looking dice in it. Not understanding why the old CEO would leave so many of his kids’ toys behind, he chucked that in the garbage as well.

The monuments to his greatness in place, and the office cleared of all vestiges of the former CEO’s kids’ toys, he booted up the laptop and checked the score of the Mariners game.

NEXT: The 2 pm Meeting