There’s Gaffers, and there’s Gaffers

by duncanr

I’ve seen a lot of MDs/CEOs come and go in my working life and their opening address introducing themselves to the workforce invariably follows the same (yawn) pattern that they have been taught in their business management course, e.g., I’m a straight talking guy, my door is always open, and other such corporate gobshite – [multinational companies aren’t looking for ‘nice guys’ when appointing a new CEO, but a . . .

ruthless, no-nonsense bastard that is going to cut waste and improve productivity, i.e., cut number of employees while simultaneously increasing productivity/profit level]

there are, of course, exceptions (though exceedingly rare) to this Robertson Law

one such was ‘R’

when the company I worked for at the time went into receivership in 2004, we were rescued by an American global conglomerate and relocated to an existing company asset in Wolverhampton

the MD, ‘R’, started life as an engineering apprentice with said company – rising through the ranks to, eventually (and somewhat reluctantly), become MD

He was the warmest, gentlest, friendliest, guy you could ever hope to meet – the best boss ever

he was on first name terms with everyone – always up for a laugh or a joke, even if at his expense – and if any of the work force was getting married, christening their baby, or whatever, ‘R’ was sure to be invited to attend the event

I was not the only grown man struggling to hold back tears when he decided enough was enough, fuck our new corporate American masters – and decided to retire and look after his wife who was in poor health

‘R’ was one of a dying breed in corporate UK – a paternalistic boss who ran a small company as if it was an extended family operation

though they are few in number, fortunately, there still exist other bosses of the same ilk as ‘R’ –


One Comment to “There’s Gaffers, and there’s Gaffers”

  1. In the year prior to my retirement I took the decision to close my Company on the occasion of my departure.

    In preparation for this, and to avoid redundancy payments to my employees, I spent that twelve months fabricating situations which allowed me to fire all the fuckers.

    Therefore, upon my retirement, there was just me. No-one to choke back tears or raise a glass to me.

    Dammit, life is hard at times !

    Liked by 1 person

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