You wear Wal Mart shirts, Woodland shoes (sneakers on Fridays) and have Nescafe…or whatever is available. He wears Allen Solly forced fits, Red Tapes that thunder with each step and sips green tea.
One would think you guys are at least from different neighborhoods if not a different geographies altogether. But actually, you practically grew up on the same street.
He calls you Stan and insists you call him Sam. He was, at best, a slow starter. You were, on your worst day, above average. Or so you believed.
But a couple of promotions and one round of restructuring later, Sam-the Man has arrived. What he lacks in spunk and stature, he makes up with the length of this back rest and per day allowance while on tour.
For Sam is now the General Manager…of support services…but GM none the less. You; are still ‘Chief Manager’, the Al Gore of managerial races.
He calls you Stan in a way that is patronizing and condescending at the same time. You manage to call him ‘Sir’ and ‘Mr. Estello’ in a mixture of badly disguised defiance and resentment…which is why he insists you call him Sam.
Sam is a background irritant. Overtime, you internalize it, learn to tune him away. But when he calls you on a Sunday, you lose it. On a good Sunday, you play ping-pong. Sam called you from the luxury of his newly acquired Golf club membership. It is not a business call, not even a follow-up call. It is the worst kind of call of all, a ‘courtesy call’. Just in case you missed the news, the man yelling ‘Fore’ in the background puts all doubts to rest. You want to tell him to mind his golf club so it doesn’t stub his toe. But you don’t. You are just left to stare at your lonely ping-pong bat. That is when you know it’s time to upgrade Sam from an annoyance to a purgative, a propellant to shake you out of your procrastination. In the long run, you will thank him.