Spe­cial as­sign­ments lift my prospects for top job

Business Daily (Kenya) - - THE WEEKENDER -

Ihave barely slept and frankly I wish I did not have to be in the of­fice since I have only got­ten about two hours of sleep. It all started last week on Fri­day when the Uganda branch man­ager sent an email to our CEO re­quest­ing for sup­port in mak­ing some pre­sen­ta­tions to some hon­chos from the Uganda Min­istry of Fi­nance.

I did not know about all un­til much later when Mike the Uganda branch man­ager called me and said,” Jose, have you booked your flight for Tues­day?” I was taken aback by this and said, “what flight is this? I have no clue.”

He ex­plained to me that he had sent an email re­quest to the boss ask­ing for my at­ten­dance. He for­warded the email which amongst other thing said “we are re­quest­ing that Josphat at­tends the ses­sion since he is very con­ver­sant with pro­cure­ment and mat­ters tax which th­ese guys will want to know about.”

The boss had re­ceived this mail on Wed­nes­day but it was Fri­day and he was yet to men­tion any­thing. What was I to do? If I went ahead and asked him about it, he would feel like was I was giv­ing him orders and talk­ing his back.

Frankly, I was not too keen to go to Uganda— all the fuss to and from the air­port for a one-hour flight is not worth it. How­ever, there was a part of me that could not help think­ing that the meet­ing in Uganda could give me some much-needed vis­i­bil­ity for the COO po­si­tion.

I opted to stay mute and avoid any dis­cus­sion with the CEO re­gard­ing the mat­ter. In fact, I was pleased when Mon­day came and by 4pm, there had been no dis­cus­sion on travel.

I was get­ting to leave the of­fice at 6pm when the CEO walked into my of­fice and said,” Josphat, do you have a minute?” I as­sumed that he wanted me to com­plete some as­sign­ment so I said, “sure!”

It turned out that the CEO had made the de­ci­sion that I needed to travel to Uganda for a day. He said,” you need to go Uganda and sup­port Mike in some fi­nan­cial en­gage­ment, but we need you back on Wed­nes­day to present to the Board on where thing stand from a pro­cure­ment point of view.”

I was not aware of the Board pre­sen­ta­tion but I re­alised that it would be ca­reer sui­cide to say no to any of the re­quests from the boss.

So, come Tues­day, I had to wake up at 3am so that

I could be at the air­port on time. I must say I en­joyed the Uganda pre­sen­ta­tion and I was feel­ing pretty achieved as I headed back home on the last flight home.

As we were ap­proach­ing Nairobi, the pi­lot made a shock­ing an­nounce­ment. He told us that owing to flight con­di­tions, he would re­di­rect the flight to Mom­basa. This an­nounce­ment had me reel­ing for how was I go­ing to make it for the Board pre­sen­ta­tion at 9am on Wed­nes­day.

We landed in Mom­basa and were told to stay in the plane till the pi­lot se­cured clear­ance to fly back to Nairobi.

After one hour we got per­mis­sion to come back to Nairobi— all of this trans­lated into a five-hour de­lay and I only man­aged to get into my house at 4.30 am.

Be­fore I could even set­tle into my sleep, it was time to wake up and head to the of­fice. I got into the of­fice 10 min­utes just be­fore the board meet­ing started.

To keep go­ing and stay awake, I had to take many en­ergy drinks. Now that the pre­sen­ta­tion is over, I feel so tired and in need of a nap. I, how­ever, be­lieve that after this my boss will view me as a good can­di­date for the COO po­si­tion.

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