Beyond Babedom

We're (way) over 40. Deal with it.

The Envelope, Please

It’s that time of the year, when we start hearing about all the award winners: the Golden Globes, the Grammys, the Oscars, the Peoples’ Choice (as if we care). I am starting a new tradition: awards for the best and worst bosses: the Tommys and the Libbys, named after my worst and best bosses.

Since this is the first year of a sure-to-be-trendsetting event, I am going to give out lifetime “achievement” awards in several categories. Of course,  some names will be changed, to protect the guilty (and my future career), though I’m certain my former co-workers will know exactly who I am talking about. And since virtually all of  my business career has been in sales, you will notice a certain slant in my choices.

The Libby Winners

The “Leave Ya Alone” Libby goes to Leigh Kirby, who hired people who knew what they were doing and left them alone to do it. Ahhh.

The “Personal Tickler” Libby goes to Pat Collins. Because of his ADHD and incredible memory, Pat remembered everything about everything and negated the need for any kind of calendar/reminder system. Got a client who only buys in April in odd numbered years? Pat will remind you to call them in time to get the order!

The “Idea Maker” Libby goes to Josh Gertzog. Besides knowing his stuff, Josh was “the man” to go to for ideas: what to sell to whom, how to sell it, and how to negotiate a better deal. Guys like Josh are the antithesis of the Shemp winners (see below).

The ” You’re An Adult” Libby goes to . . . Libby Bartley, my high school gym teacher and Carnival Bar ice cream truck franchisee and the namesake of these awards. She treated me like an adult, paid me exactly what I earned and even let me eat as much ice cream as I wanted.

And, of course, the other side of the coin:

The Tommy Winners

The Least Motivating Tommy goes to. . . Joe D., for telling his New York City sales team that if they don’t like being paid the same as the  people in Tuscaloosa, they should move there. He never did figure out how he would staff NYC if the whole team moved. . .  He also wins The Most Inarticulate Boss award for talking about events that will “come to fruitation.”

The Bottom Line Tommy goes to. . . Joe Pellechi. Here’s a guy who, in order to prove me wrong, actually called a competitor to let them know their biggest client was negotiating a deal with me. Really. Of course, I got back at him by removing all of my customer files and shipping them to my house at the company’s expense. Pretty satisfying, I must say, when I got his frantic voice mail message begging for them back.

And, finally, The Shemp of Publishing Tommy goes to. . . Tom C. Possibly suffering from early-onset Alzheimer’s, this charmer doesn’t know the definition of the word “copy” (“You mean the color of the letters?”), thinks a milestone is the same as a milepost (“Hey, let’s put a map of NJ on our Milestones magazine!”), wasted a senior law partner’s time asking him inane questions  (making the partner quip, “I would have boned up if I knew I was getting cross examined.”), and insisted no sales person (even if you’re  supposed to be selling solutions) should ever ask a client what obstacles to success they face. Maybe this doesn’t seem so stupid to you, but this is the guy in charge. Sigh.

So, who was your worst/best boss?

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This entry was posted on Wednesday, January 20th, 2010 at 7:29 PM and is filed under My Pet Peeves. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

  1. Nika says:

    My boss is awesome. She lets me take time off whenever I want, work wherever and whenever feels good, use my strengths and talents, be creative, bring my cat to the office, work in bed…
    Ahhh… the joys of solo-preneurship.

  2. Lili says:

    My Tommy goes to my 1st boss out of college, who would take me into meetings with HER managers and then look to me to answer their questions on how she ran her department; then light into me with her “disappointment” when we returned to work! She was a real class act…

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