As a part of my job description in my “corporate” life, I was expected to occasionally supply content for the firm’s website. One of the assignments was to draft a “Word From the CEO” – type message on behalf of the firm’s principal. We discussed the sort of things he wanted me to cover and the general ‘tone’ of the piece.
I finished the piece the next day and sent him a draft by email, copied to the firm’s Business Manager. After a couple of days, not having heard back, I phoned the boss to check whether it was what he was looking for. As was about par for the course, I wasn’t able to get him on the line, so I left a message with his executive assistant, asking her to remind him to look at it and get back to me with any feedback.
Again, I didn’t hear anything back about it until the Business Manager phoned me about a week later to ask me where the draft was. I pointed out that it was among his email. Later that afternoon, he called me to say (essentially) that the piece was “crap”, not “what Al was looking for”. I asked him to give me some idea as to where it went wrong and he said he’d “get back to me”.
About another week or so later, I got a call from the boss, asking me how come I hadn’t provided him with the message he requested. I recounted for him what had transpired. He told me to hold while he tracked down my email. Then, as was his custom, he called the Business Manager on another line (meaning I heard everything that transpired).
Briefly, it turns out the draft was “exactly” what the boss was looking for. He asked the BM “what was wrong with it?” only to hear he somewhat sheepish reply that he “didn’t know”. You know why? He hadn’t read it. (Sigh)