Today after work I was stopped by a new co-workers who works on sales. He was trained by our old Sales Manager, and is struggling. He vented about how he is upset that I was not the one who trained him, because he feels the three new sales reps I have been working with this week have had more and better training than he ever did, despite been given the same manual. He begged me not to fire him, and told me how hard he is trying. He asked if I can work with him one and one and get him up to speed. It was both sad and relieving to hear him say these things.
One, I was upset that he would feel such a threat, and be so concerned about his well being. He is trying to hard, and it is not his fault that he was given only so much guidance, or tools. Like giving a man wood and nails and expecting him to build a house. It’s just not that simple. I assured him that we are not going to “take him out back for an execution”. We talked about what he can do in his spare time, and what he should do to be more successful. That being said, the reason I am relieved is that he feels comfortable coming to me, and wants help. He knows that I can help him, and he wants to be a part of this company. He recently lost a friend in a fatal motorcycle accident, and now he stressing about losing his job? I couldn’t let him spend the weekend stressing over his job! I assured him that both the new sales manager and myself would not let him go until we felt like there was nothing else we could do for him, and he was simply not capable of doing his job. As long as he is willing to push himself, the sales will come, and he WILL be successful. It was nice to see him leave with a smile, and thank me for my understanding.
Once I got home, I saw a text from my new “friend”. He has next weekend off, so we can spend time together. I grabbed my kids some string cheese and decided to sit down and eat one myself. Just as I was about to text back, my phone rang. “Joshy McSexyPants” – My heart jumped. He’s calling me? Hmmm…
“HEY! What are you doing right now?”
Then something happened that I haven’t had anyone do in years.. He told me about his day. He went on and on about his coworkers. His feelings about the day’s happenings, and what he was thinking about it right now. He expressed his frustrations, his irritations, and what he was going to do to make himself feel better. He was venting. As strange as it may sound, this is such a relief to me. I love knowing that someone feels comfortable enough to vent to me. Hearing about someone else’s day is just amazing!
Once he was finished, I started to tell him about my day. The good, the bad, the frustrating, and the trials. I vented, and he responded. I didn’t have to stop and say “Hello?” to see if he was still there. I didn’t get dead silence on the phone. I had interaction. Of course, he is a drill instructor, so I shouldn’t be surprised that he communicates well, but it is so new to me. Then he brought up next week.. “I would like to come over after you get off work on Friday, and watch Scrubs with you. Would you mind if we did that?” – Wait.. He wants to come over after I am off work? As in he has no problem interacting with my kids (whom he could HEAR screaming and being insane in the background)? I told him they are insane, and he doesn’t care. He has kids. Then I remind myself again: He is a drill instructor. I am almost positive that nothing that goes on at my house is going to disgust or surprise him.
After a short conversation, it was decided that he will take me to dinner, then we will come back and hang out. He wanted to cook for me, but I am still so worried about getting glutened, so I insisted that he wait until we know each other better. That way if I happen to eat something contaminated, our second date won’t end with me in crippling pain. He agreed, but insists he will be cooking for me once he learns everything I can and can not eat. I reminded him that I am allergic to cats, and so I cannot come to his house for his lovely cooking. His response? “I’ll kill the cat for you.” HAHA! (btw, he was joking)
I lay in my bed listening to him talk to me about some of his general woes. He kept stopping and saying, “What am I doing? You don’t need to hear this. I am sorry.” – but I insisted he keep going. It was SO great to listen. To be ABLE to listen. To have someone who WANTS me to listen to them. I don’t care what he is talking about, I am just SO glad he is talking. I would respond and give my opinion, or a similar experience. He would listen, give input, and then continue the conversation.
Now, again, I am not saying I even know I have real feelings for this man, but I do know this: I very much like what is going on. He makes me forget about my aches, my pains, and my problems. Even when I am venting about them, being angry about something, he just vents with me! I don’t know him well enough to be sure, but I am pretty sure that regardless of what happens, I am making a great friend.
Maybe more? Maybe…