I watched from a distance. A short, feisty, scrappy, spit-fire. A Chihuahua.

Place of Birth: The Bronx. With accompanying accent.

Deep skills. A reputation for getting things done, but doing so and leaving a large wake. She didn’t tolerate fools gladly. She was quick to show up colleagues. Result: A bulls-eye on her back.

It was January, 2011. It was a 12-minute interview. I told her that the job was hers sans the wake creation. I would have zero tolerance for air turbulence. I created enough of my own.

I went on to give her the pre-game disclosure. And motivational speech:

You’re playing on the A team now. Out of junior varsity.
We use proper English in our memos and letters.
No slang. Or whatever that is coming out of your mouth.
I need to show up at the right airport. At the right meeting. On time. All the time.
No crying when your feelings get hurt. You want a hug, get a dog.
I had better not find HR in my office on any antics.
You won’t keep up. Just accept it.

She paused. She laughed. She told me to “Shut Up.”  She was hired.

Like Deep Blue, the machine quietly hummed in the background. Calendar management. Meetings. Conferences. Travel. Gate-Keeping. Tech Support. Phone Support. Vendor payment processing. T&E processing. Presentation preparation. Phone calls. Remote office scheduling. Greeter.

She walks in my office 60 days in and I’m deep into a project.

“So, how am I doing.”
“That’s it?”
“That’s it.”

She walks out. I smile.

My bi-polar mood controller.
My nudge.
My clock watcher.
My personal reminder system.
My keeper of confidential information in a vault.
My Defender.

This was her last day at the firm. And with me. On to bigger opportunities.

It was 4:30pm. I was heading upstairs for a meeting.

I looked outside my office window.  She’s sitting at her desk.

2.5 years.  Side-by-side.  In the trenches.  Hard wired.

I gave her a fist bump as I passed her desk.


“Talk to you later.”


  1. And you will miss her…who needed the hug this time? And btw, HR isn’t the answer …:-)


  2. Sounds like she was a perfect match for you!


  3. My mentor, my rock! Who will I yell at now? Hugs


  4. Wow. You’re hard.


  5. you are so tender, in your own way. lovely story.


  6. You, pal, are a big chocolate covered cherry—hard shell covering a soft, gooey interior. Don’t even try to deny it….


  7. Well, I would say she was a very lucky person to be working next to the chocolate covered cherry (thanks donnaanddiablo) for that amount of time. Is there an opening??? 🙂


  8. LaDona's Music Studio says:

    Crusty marshmallow maybe?


  9. Smiling…


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