I mentioned a few posts back that I’d left a VM for our CFO, complimenting him and his staff for being so on-the-ball, and that he’d left a return VM to thank me.

Well, he made a rare personal appearance in my office yesterday, to follow up. That’s a wonderful thing, believe me, because the third-floor crew rarely steps down into Prozac Land. They can’t stand how slowly my floor operates. So, it was quite the honor for me.

Anyway, he just wanted to thank me again for taking notice of their efforts, and for being so moved to take the time to pick up a phone. He said he’s found that the occasional “thank you” is truly the best motivator for people, and he firmly believes that you can never hear that phrase often enough. And he noted that it was clear that I was making a heartfelt sentiment, and for that, he was most grateful to me as well.

I said hey, no acknowledgment of me was expected or necessary. I said I hate those meetings, and that everyone’s all touchy-feely-fuzzy-wuzzy and tiptoeing around being either direct or confrontational, and it did my heart a lot of good to hear him say, “Did that,” “We’re two steps ahead of you on that,” and “You’ll have it tomorrow.” I said that it’s not that I am saying that no other department is as productive, but he made it abundantly clear that his team kicks ass. And that’s something I respect and take notice of.

He made a little joke that their jobs are easy, that he couldn’t possibly pull off all the creative work that I do. (Awww, ain’t he cute.) I said look, if you bring me into your department, I’ll share my creativity. He smiled. I said seriously, I want to work for you — this environment down here, and the lack of anyone really lighting a fire under me — isn’t my scene. Just think about it!

So he left on a good note. Everyone in member services witnessed this exchange, as it took place in my doorway, but so what? I ran to get some hot chocolate after he left, and I noticed that he’d settled down in Demure’s office for at least the next half hour. I’m very curious as to what he had to say to her. But I’m sure it was all good, because he and I have always had this mutual respect for each other. And I know he hates it that there is talent (i.e. Shan and me) in departments other than his. Not that he wants to house all the talent of the agency, but I know there are a few dead weights he can’t get rid of, and it pains him that he can’t make an even exchange. The good thing about him is that he has taken such a shine to Shan and me, and he is perhaps the only one who knows that there is a shitload of talent and vision that the association isn’t harnessing.

Rumor has it that if Kumquat ever left, CFO would move into his position. Truly, that’s the only way this association could ever be saved. He’d get rid of all the Solitaire-playing, book-reading, incessant-gabbing mongrels who contaminate our hallways. And I’m sure he’d kick the asses of the sniveling little mice in the top echelon as well.

Why do I always find myself enthralled by the finance and operations directors at my jobs? Probably because I admire their logic and their outcomes-driven mentalities. I, as the visionary, can tell them what result I want to see, and they can figure out the process of how to make that happen. They aren’t lacking in their own vision, but they are committed to having a beginning point and an endpoint, and they relish channelling their creativity into the in-between steps that I don’t have the patience or the presence of mind to consider. But just because I can’t DO the middle steps, doesn’t mean I don’t appreciate and admire those who can. Their artistry is being the foundation, the building blocks and the mortar. I’d rather fine-tune the finished draft and then take it into the world and announce its arrival and convince the masses to fall in love with it and support it. That, my friends, is teamwork.

Anyway, CFO rocks. That’s all I really wanted to say in this post. 😉

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