“These figures look impressive. But are you sure they would work?” David asked with a frown of scrutiny on his face.
“I am very positive sir, I have studied them for a while, and I have all indications that implementing this method here…, ” she points to a graph on the sheets “… would have us reeling in profit five times our current cap in the second quarter of 2019” Danielle replied.
She continued “You have vast experience in management Mr. David, and as president of this company, I know you would want to see us do even better sir. These are not far-fetched wishes and I am willing to go all the way with this.”
“OK, Danielle I like where this is going, and I like your zeal to push this company further. What department are you in again?” David asked.
“I’m the head of Discipline and Conformance in HR Sir. 12th floor,” she answered.
“HR. Interesting. So, this is what I would do; I would support you and push you into the race for the Executive Vice President of the company. The seat became vacant very recently as you know, after the death of Dr. Johnson, and we would be retiring several of our senior VPs by the end of June.”
Danielle was beaming with smiles. She didn’t believe it. She had walked into the President’s office hoping to just show her reports and leave, but she was going to fight for Executive VP in front of the board. It was crazy. David, the current president picked up his desk phone and dialed a number.
“Hello, good morning sir.
I want to nominate a new person for the post. I can assure you, you would love what she has to offer at the meeting sir.
Yes sir, right away sir.”
David ended the call and picked up the sheets to look at the numbers once more.
“I am so so grateful sir, I promise I won’t let you down”, Danielle said unable to hide her happiness.
“It’s fine Danielle, you can go now and prepare your presentation for the big day. You have my support. This looks very impressive. I would be happy to see you on the team. The meeting is in 4 days.”
Danielle headed for the door still not believing her luck. Everything was suddenly going so great. She was going to be Executive Vice President. That was 3 positions up from her current point and would’ve taken up to 10 years to reach or even more since she was a woman. She opened the door but heard David call her name.
“Sir.” She answered as she turned to face him, still elated.
“Come here a minute, let me say something confidential to you. It would help your presentation.” David said.
Danielle closed the door and begun to walk over to him.
“Please lock the door,” David added barely looking up from the sheets.
Danielle turned to lock the door and walked back to David’s table.
“I really like you. I don’t know how you ended up in HR in the first place, but I see you as a strong team player” David said.
He stood up, turned round to sit on the table just beside her.
“If we are going to be on the same team, we have to be able to say we know each other well. You know where I am going right?” David added as he touched her face.
Danielle really understood what was about to happen.
“I really don’t understand sir” Danielle said as David loosened his belt buckle.
“What I mean is, you scratch my back, and I scratch yours. You make me happy, I make you happy. You would need my support to be Executive Vice President. It’s a huge leap from HR. A seemingly impossible leap without my help. So seeing that we would be working together a lot, I say, we get to know each other better. Such a fine young woman in my building hidden away in faraway HR.” David said as he reached for her first button.
Danielle was really sad. Her brain racing to find a way around this fix.
There was a knock on the door.
“Yes, who is it?” David asked, racing to buckle his belt and turn back to his seat.
“It’s me sir, I just wanted to give you the notes you asked for”, the voice said through the door.
“We will continue this later. Let her in on your way out”. He said to Danielle.
She got up and walked rather slowly to the door. She opened it and the woman on the other side, gave her a wry smile as she passed into the office.
Danielle’s heart had been racing before. She was calmer now, riding the elevator down to her office, oblivious of other staff coming on and getting off the elevator on different floors.
She was saved by the knock that one time, but she was definite she would have to face David and turn him down when she is faced with this harassment again. Who was she to report to? She was HR. It was her job to investigate such matters and report it to the board. If she reports him, she loses his support, and probably the nomination too.
She was so deep in thought that she didn’t realize she had reached the ground floor.
Danielle had always been creative. She was going to bell the cat.