WEAK AT THE TOP: John Weak's Diary

WEAK AT THE TOP: John Weak's Diary - MONDAY

by John Weak who can be contacted at john.weak@smokehouse.co.uk
Last Updated: 31 Aug 2010


Got in late because I knew it was going to be a pig of a week. Smokehouse results were the worst since the fall of Rome and Sir Marcus is getting divorced. It's a toss-up who's losing money at a faster rate. We've also got our staff satisfaction survey and my team's scores are usually equivalent to a POW camp. Asking staff about job satisfaction is like asking women about sexual satisfaction: there's never a box saying 'I'm bloody lucky to be getting any at all'. If only I could ditch my team. I've tried empowering them, telling them to work at home etc but they keep whining back to my office asking bloody stupid questions like 'What is my job exactly?'. If you have to ask that you shouldn't be in marketing.


Donned mental jockstrap for meeting with Sir Marcus for 'a little constructive feedback'. Taking a little feedback from Sir Marcus is like taking a little drink from a fire hose. While I was waiting in his office I read his newspaper and noticed he'd circled a couple of personal ads for future women to get divorced from. Both women claimed to be short and dark. I was going to ask Sir Marcus about his preference for trolls when he burst in and started shouting that we were in the worst recession ever and we had to stop pissing our money away on advertising. He said that half of the money we spent on advertising was wasted, he was going to cut that immediately and I'd have to prove that the other half worked.


Called agency to demand they justify the money we spend with them. They suggested a 100k research project to investigate. Nearly fell for it until I remembered the account totty suggesting it had a dangerously high brain-to-breast ratio. Lunch with Bill. Discussed the situation over a couple of bottles of red and a steak so rare that a good vet could have put it back on its feet. Bill also under big pressure to cut costs. He'd developed a system of matrix management so complex no-one knows who's responsible for anything and the budget rests entirely with his secretary. We talked through advertising cuts, staff satisfaction and troll fetishes and decided to keep drinking until we'd cracked them all.


Got in late due to mother of all hangovers. Couldn't remember whether we'd cracked anything other than almost a case of red. Had two coffees and four aspirin and noticed commotion in my department. The paper was full of adverts for marketing jobs in Smokehouse that strangely corresponded to all the jobs in my team. Bingo. I said we should have a proper team meeting to discuss the advertised jobs but before that perhaps they would like to fill in their staff satisfaction surveys. Staff motivation sorted, I then sat down and wrote an interesting personal ad which started: 'Are you the pin-striped tycoon on my train' and ended with 'I'm small, brunette and in seat B25'. Finished the day at the gym with Howard doing some upper body work on parallel bars (we both leant on the bar).


Bumped into Sir Marcus, who congratulated me on having the best staff morale in the company. He said he'd have to postpone our late meeting on advertising costs as he needed to get his normal train. Exactly three hours later, Sir Marcus squeezed his pin-stripes into a standard-class carriage for the first time in his life and looked for the occupant of seat B25. He found Bill Peters sitting there proving how he was economising on travelling expenses. Bill took the opportunity to hand Sir Marcus my report on the power of advertising, which amounted to a photocopy of 18 motivational job ads and one personal ad for a desperate troll with bad taste in men. I wished I'd been there but I was too busy wasting the other half of our advertising budget on some top agency totty.

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