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Puppet Employee

I know I’ve been slacking up lately. But business is booming and the misses and I only have so much time in the day to get things done. I wake up, brush my teeth, and then go to work on the kitchen table. I’ll wrap up the work day about sixteen hours later. I can’t remember the last time I went to the gym and sweated. I can’t remember the last time I had a day where I wasn’t working on somebody’s database or on somebody’s proposal to do somebody’s database. And at the moment, we really can’t afford not to do everything we can to find more business and more customers.

There has been a lot of news that has come and gone out over the past week. People are upset about the happenings in Egypt and wonder why the United States won’t do more to influence the outcome while other people are wondering why the United States is involved. Black history month kicked off with a few lame promotions of black celebrities such as the black anchor on one of the cable news channels being a model member of the black community when the chick ain’t never expressed one single iota of interest in what’s happening with black people. House Representative Gabrielle Giffords is in Houston, Texas still recovering from her injuries in Tucson, Arizona while her husband tells her to go to hell so he can catch the next space shuttle out of town. And I let all that slide without much of a comment just so I can work with the misses on building our business.

But one thing I can say is that with each and every day it is becoming easier and easier to find customers. Through a lot of hard work, we have managed to reach the top ten percent of database providers on the website we use to find work. When we first joined the site back in October, the company appeared way back on page six. This week, we managed to reach page one. We are getting more invitations to bid on jobs. Unfortunately, we’re not ready to rest on our laurels. We still spend a lot of time looking for all those jobs from people that obviously forget to invite us. And we’ve developed a website that promotes the company and managed to do a little advertising using Google ad words. And this week, the investment in time and money for our site is beginning to pay off. We’ve actually managed to get a couple of leads out of the blue off the internet. It’s been rough, it is rough, but we can envision a day when we can dial back on the push. We just can’t see it on the horizon at the moment.

The other day I got another invitation. A Fortune 100 company here in St. Louis is looking to hire a database developer and a headhunter I worked with in the past asked me if I was interested in applying. I said yes, but the thought of going back to work for someone else wasn’t a very appealing one. I told the recruiter that I would send an updated resume. But after I hung up the phone I had to admit that my heart just wasn’t in it. After four months of struggling the business is beginning to come into its own and going to work for someone else will only delay future progress. I updated the resume, but I never sent it. I put it off and went back to work looking for customers or busying myself with another database modification.

The headhunter called back the next day looking for the resume. I laid everything I was feeling on the line. I told the recruiter that I had just started my company and that I wasn’t interested in going back to work for someone who felt entitled to yank my chain at their discretion as if I was their puppet employee. And with my job history, it would only be a matter of time before my manager and I were at odds because he or she found my development style too unorthodox to fit his or her management style and we would be at odds. I liked developing software and then moving on without all the rigmarole and bullshit that comes from being an employee. I don’t want to waste my time doing bureaucratic paper pushing and employment improvement plans that don’t amount to squat. I just want to develop software.

The recruiter then told me that the company was ready to pay a number that made my eyes go wide. But even with such a salary, I wouldn’t be happy. We are in the middle of making something for ourselves. Why would we put that aside to help somebody with their own agenda, only to be discarded in the future when their accountants develop a business model that shows how much more profitable the company can be if they would only shed me along with a few thousand other employees.

It would be easy to go back to a nine to five and let somebody else do the work necessary to keep a business going. But as soon as I let somebody else have the control over my destiny I shouldn’t complain when they drive me straight over the edge.

I might regret my decision. At my age, opportunities in my line of work come few and far between. But one thing I must ask myself is that after more than twenty five years in the business working for someone else, where has it gotten me so far? It would be madness for me to think that going to work for someone else is now the solution.

Now if you’ll excuse me, we have a business to grow.

Sunday, February 6, 2011 - Posted by | Life, Thoughts


  1. You MIGHT regret the decision to pass over the job. But I think you’d have regretted it more if you’d pushed your own creation aside for the quick money the 9-5 routine gave ya. Too many what-ifs, considering your own creation could end up giving you far more money than that 9-5, along with the freedom to do it your way. Keep up the hard work Brother.

    Comment by Mike Lovell | Tuesday, February 8, 2011 | Reply

    • MOOKIE!!!

      You’re still here!!! Dude! It’s good to see you!!!

      I don’t think I’ll regret it all that much. Money isn’t always the issue! That’s probably why I’m broke.


      Comment by brotherpeacemaker | Tuesday, February 8, 2011 | Reply

  2. Yep, still alive and kickin. And you’re right, money isn’t always the issue…the happy factor has to come into play, plus pursuing your own goals versus punching a clock to help someone else make a million bucks is always a lot more exhilarating to your psyche.

    I do the 9-5 thing…well the midnight to 8am thing, and I know for a fact that isnt going to get me beyond broke…

    Comment by Mike Lovell | Wednesday, February 9, 2011 | Reply

  3. It is very exciting to know of your success.
    May you continue in perfect health and
    May you find the balance between your work and re-creation time.
    Peace and Love,

    Comment by Akinwole | Thursday, February 10, 2011 | Reply

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