Cruella de AV steered her Roller into the car park and ascended the unswept stairs to the regional office. Sue the receptionist quaked in fear at her desk, the six incoming phone lines unlit and five staff upstairs unaware of what was to happen.
‘Who are YOU?’ Cruella spat.
Without waiting for an answer she strode to the next floor and started yelling at the first person she spotted, in their cubicle, with the air conditioning broken and the floor un-mopped. ‘You! What was the immediate last cold call you made, to whom, when, and what was the outcome?’
The business development professional was quite prepared for this, as the grapevine is full of Cruella stories. She revelled in running the firm with many offices. It had momentum, and what it needed was a decent, proper austerity regime.
A woman of the world, Cruella knew more than enough. A sale is a sale, and one pathway to more sales is via acquisition. She had taken over a few more modest outfits, and quickly transformed those staff to her simple model. Get the tender. Short the contractors. Screw the suppliers. Deny the staff the bonus. Ignore the petty cash claims. Forget to pay superannuation. All of this is easy if you are strong, and driven, and better than anyone!
Industrial Relations laws and things like the Fair Work Commission were but tedious toothless annoyances that challenged her ever-changing roster of low-rent lawyers who themselves were opportune for testing. Some annoying court cases had occupied her, but she enjoyed the aggression and testing the stuffy old judges.
Over five years, Cruella increased her net profit from 10% to 40% which was astounding, except the gross turnover fell by half. Still ahead, she rampaged from office to office, giving guidance to stupid, ineffective staff every day.
‘Your head is up your arse. You are the reason this office is failing, No one likes you here’, were some common threads of encouragement.
She did seek some reaffirmation, by calling her major competitor to compare notes, on collegial grounds. He like everyone else in the close-knit industry knew too well what Cruella stands for. She is for self, for one, and highly encouraged by the excellent leadership espoused by ‘the 45th’, President of the USA.
With her real estate portfolio, personal adornments and trinkets and with the complete veneration of every single person locked in temporary employment with her, Cruella planned her Christmas day with delight.
On Christmas Eve, the ghost of AV visited her in her dreams. He had run a major listed company that had hired him from another listed conglomerate. His achievements eclipsed hers by many magnitudes. His scorched earth was burned deeper and blacker than hers, but he was eventually prised from his executive suite and set free with a golden parachute.
‘Oh Great One, where is my exit, my parachute?’ she wailed at his overconfident, polo necked apparition as it appeared on the balcony of her mansion on the hill that she occupied alone.
‘Cruella, you don’t get it’, whispered the ghost. ‘I was but walking by and screwed the board by dazzling them with visions and forecasts. You have no one to dazzle. You have no exit other than at your own hand. You are alone in your turret. I am free!’
She woke on Christmas day and resolved to work those bastard lazy staff harder.
- This is a work of fiction. Any resemblance to any person is unintended.
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