Car crush (on success)

Joe the consultant was yawning in his car, driving to his customer that rainy tuesday morning. He is a talented engineer with a track of several projects, all spent on field. Joe is one of the over 4000 associates working for a big consulting firm player. Being highly requested by customers, he has seen his company headquarter three times in four years.

Joe is yawning as he had been up till late working on a new tender analysis for the consulting firm he works for. Joe has a long story of success with tenders, as he seems to have a great ability to precisely calculate the effort and optimize resource allocation for any specific item requested. He is very talented in proposing the right setup and very detailed in explaining where money can be saved and where not. His manager is very happy about that, and asks Joe again and again for an extra effort in the evenings for that, being Joe already on a contract with a customer during the day.  

Joe does not receive any extra on his salary for that; his manager specified him the company actually expects from him this extra work, being that a required step for the next career step. His manager never forgets to send a mail to thank for the analysis once the tender is won; it is not a “thanks Joe” mail but a “thanks TEAM” mail. In fact, Joe was clearly explained that any move or success is a team result, no matter what. Accepting this is another step towards the career step mentioned above. 

What above would have repeated again and again, but that rainy morning a young guy named Marc was texting while driving, did not see the red light coming up and crashed into Joe’s car, patiently waiting for the green light.

Because of the injury, Joe is forced to stay away from the customer site and take a few days off. His manager is actually urgently needing the tender analysis, and proposes Joe to join the management meeting to help them complete the analysis and finalize the tender document. Joe, wearing his cervical neck collar, can sit for the first time at the same table with business managers, sales directors and also the VP.

And he starts presenting his analysis. For about 15 minutes, nobody talks nor interrupts him. In the end they finally thank him very warmly, shaking hands and asking Joe for his direct phone number.

Two weeks after, Joe is notified by the human resource manager he has been promoted to a Senior role. Joe starts receiving plenty of calls from business managers he never met before. Even the VP once sent him a private direct mail to ask him for a few slides over an emerging technology.

Joe and Marc are still good friends.

Be careful about the visibility of your results. People with no results and people with “non visible results” are both in the same waiting line for the next career step.  

Spend some time thinking if you are hidden in a “thank you team” mail, avoid the “be patient” advisors.

And keep your seat belts fastened. Happy 2014!


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