I've just completed my first day at the new job. Believe me, the trip to get here was hellacious and not in a good sense. You see, I thought I had a firm commitment to a rental car. It turned out, when I stepped up to the counter to present my debit card, the agency refused to take it unless I showed them I was leaving town; they insisted on a return itinerary, of all things. Since I intend to stay and booked only a one-way flight, I was completely SOL, stuck at Boston-Logan airport with no agency willing to rent me a car.
I tried hard to resolve the problem by searching the web with my Blackberry. Not a single agency had a policy that didn't prevent me from renting a car. In the end, I flagged a cab and asked to be taken to my hotel. The fare, you ask? $92 and change plus tip. Almost $100 down the drain.
Saturday morning, I scoured the local yellow pages for a more local agency, called some, found 2 that would rent to me. Unfortunately, the cheaper of the two had no car available, so I had to get a cab to take me to the one where I'd have to pay twice as much for the same service. Oy!!
Today, the manager started describing the environment, the people, the culture, the problems, the wish list, etc. I was introduced to my 2 junior programmers and we had a short meeting in the afternoon. They started going over the same stuff, but I explained I'd already gotten it from the boss. Next, I started telling them stories from my career, describing how hard it had been for me to learn to work with the product and some of the experiences I've had with customers. I went into the future as I envision it, saying to them that we were to be peers, not manager and subordinates. True, I had more responsibilities but that was because I had more experience. I said I was going to rely on them to learn what they had to know so that we could satisfy the customer and our company in the short term and learn and do even more than that to advance our careers permanently. It was incredible how they relaxed and then enthused. I hadn't known what kind of reception my policy and I would get. It feels good.
Tomorrow, the customer's top dog is going to meet with me and perhaps some others and ask what I can do for him. He give me his wish list, his needs list, his goals, his ideas. He'll ask me if they can be done and when and for how much. I can't prepare real data, so I'll be doing all I can without selling my soul. Wish me luck, y'all. Thanks.