The Executive Car Wash – A Symptom of…Something Else

wisdom_quotes_101

Have I told you lately how glad I don’t work in the private sector of the business world?  Where expense accounts and car allowances and business lunches are the everyday?  Where strip clubs are put through as “entertainment” and buying a pack of cigarettes counts as a business meal? Where bosses think nothing of dropping $60 a day on Lattes and Cappucinos and Espressos from Starbucks for their team, but give you a card at Christmas with “you’re wonderful!” and nothing more (even when you know they’re part of the “bonus pool” and got a huge check – something that, as an assistant, you are not allowed to be part of, even though you’re part of “the team”).

It seems that the more money you make, the more perks you are given, the worse your behavior for most of those who get the big bucks/have the power.  That doesn’t mean to say that there aren’t great, generous, humble people working for Fortune 500 companies, but they are, from experience, few and far between.

I would hope, that if I ever got into such a powerful position, and was a beneficiary of a “bonus pool” and knew the most important member of my team was not part of it, that I would give them a percentage of what I got.  Even if it was negligible, it’s the point of the thing.  I’ve heard it said that that is how rich people stay rich – they don’t give if there isn’t a tax write-off, or some way to get some of it back.

This hoarding – of funds, of love, of information, of ANYTHING… just makes you poorer.  Maybe not financially, but where the real truth of life lies… in our relationships with each other. A generous person is a person confident of where they fit in the world, and is unafraid to let things go, knowing that whatever you put out into the universe, you will reap threefold.  It’s hard not to be afraid, and it’s hard not to just want to keep it all, in case of, for maybe, the rainy day, it might happen… all of those are valid, but there’s a difference between preparing for later and living in fear.

Here’s something I’ve learned – there’s enough.  Of whatever you need. That’s it.  I may not be talking cash, but I mean everything else.  Cash is just a tool to help you get things. We give it way more power than it has the right to have.

Maybe it’s all about control, and not behavior. Maybe letting go of that modicum of power (in your own eyes) is the line in the sand.  I don’t know.  All I know is that when you’re getting paid to do the Big Job, you should spread the wealth, and let your little elves and pixies take care of the small stuff. They’re usually pretty good at it, and it makes them feel good when you actually LET them do their jobs, instead of doing it for them.

Here’s an example of what I’m talking about:

9:00 AM

<ring ring>

M:          Hi John.

J:            Mary, could you please call the car wash and ask how many executive washes I have left this month?

M:          Sure John.

<ring ring> (goes on for about 2 minutes)

FD:         Front Desk.

M:          Oh, hello, I was trying to reach the car wash?

FD:         Yes, they are already all out of the office doing their jobs washing.  Can I help?

M:          Yes, my boss John would like to know how many executive washes he has left this month.

FD:         <pause> Uhh… OK, I will see if I can find this out for you.

M:          Thank you.

9:25 AM

<ring ring>

M:          John’s Office.

CW:       Hi Mary, John has four car washes left this month.  He is entitled to one fill up and one wash per week, as I’ve told him before.

M:          Thanks so much, I appreciate it.

<ring ring>

J:            Hello?

M:          Hi John, you have four car washes left this month.

J:            Great.  Can you call them back and ask if they can wash my car today? I have a hard out at 4, so it would need to be back by then.

M:          Of course.

<ring ring>

FD:         Front Desk.

M:          Hello, I’m trying to reach the car wash again.

FD:         I’ll have them call you; it may take a while, they are out doing their jobs.

M:          I totally understand. Thank you!

9:40 AM

<ring ring>

M:          John’s Office.

CW:       Mary? Seriously, what is it he needs now? We’re very busy.

M:          I know, sorry.  He would like the car washed today, but he has a hard out at 4, can it be back by then?

CW:       Yes, not a problem.

M:          Thanks so much.

11:30 AM

<ring ring>

M:          Hi, John.

J:            Mary, can you check and make sure the car has been picked up to be washed?

M:          <pause>…Sure, John.

<ring ring>

CW:       Car wash.

M:          Hi, has John’s car been picked up to be washed?

CW:       <pause> Matter of fact, I was on my way to do it when I came back to answer this call.

M:          Sorry.  Thank you so much.

<ring ring>

J:            Hello?

M:          John, your car has been picked up to be washed.

J:            Great. Thanks.

1:15 PM

<ring ring>

M:          Hi, John.

J:            Mary, can you call the car wash and see if the car is ready?  I have a hard out at 4 and I’m worried it won’t be ready.

M:          John, I did tell them it had to be back specifically by 4.

J:            I know but I have to leave right at 4, so it needs to be back before then, I think.

ME:        <pause>…Sure, John. I will call them.

<ring ring>

CW:       CAR WASH!

M:          Hello, I’ve been asked to remind you John needs to leave AT 4, so he would like his car to be there prior to that, if possible.

CW:       Mary, we get it. He needs the car by 4.

M:          (sheepishly) I know you know… Just doing what John is asking.

CW:       <sighs heavily> Yes, we know.

<ring ring>

J:            Hello?

M:          Car wash will have your car back prior to 4.

J:            Great!

3:10 PM

<ring ring>

M:          Hi, John.

J:            Mary, can you make sure the car is back?

M:          John, they said they would have it back before 4, they are very good about it.

J:            I would really like to know that it’s back, for my own peace of mind.  I’d appreciate you not giving me attitude about it.

M:          <pause>…Of course.  I will call and check for…

J:            <click>

<ring ring>

CW:       Car wash.

M:          <clears throat> Hi, just checking to see if John’s car is ready?

CW:       <pause> Seriously?

M:          Yup.

CW:       Yes, Mary.  The car is back in its parking spot, all shiny and clean.

M:          I really appreciate it.  Sorry for all the trouble.

CW:       You’re not the trouble, Mary.

<ring ring>

J:            Hello?

M:          Car’s back and ready to go, John.

J:            Great! You just have to keep on top of these people to make sure they do their jobs!

Did they fill it up?

M:          <pause> Really?

There are so many things going on in these exchanges, I don’t even know where to begin.

Let’s not try.  Let’s just leave it with this:

f,,k,idiot,,,funny,humour,quotes-b2ac9a3b8dcf6b7805c23de106119132_h

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