Their Fearless Leader

Fearless LeaderAugustus Antonius Inflatus and his ego swaggered in on his first day as the new head of Purchasing. He was introduced to the team and other key staff members as a go-getter, a highly successful leader, and an experienced negotiator with over 10 years of purchasing experience under his belt, and TWO master’s degrees!

Everyone was very impressed! Here was the expertise which management so clearly wanted to integrate into the organization. The most recent head had resigned after a “disagreement” with the CEO and management didn’t want to promote from within and they didn’t think the expertise was there.

Augustus appeared to be a good fit with the rest of the company. He was quite friendly and was within the average age range of the purchasing staff and seemed genuinely interested in the welfare of his subordinates.

He loved hosting events at his house. Friday nights after work, the 12 members of his purchasing team headed over to his place for drinks and to just unwind after the busy week. But each night would end with a drunken Augustus making rude gestures or telling inappropriate stories to his guests. After a while this grew tiresome and it wasn’t long before some started making excuses as to why they couldn’t be there. After about 2 months or so, the Friday night events at Augustus’ came to an end.

Still as sociable as ever, however, Augustus signed up on an online dating website. Every Monday morning he would regale employees with his weekend exploits, whether they were interested or not. Not surprisingly, his stories always had the potential to end the same way: in bed.

“I had a date with this psychologist on Saturday night,” he would begin. “She wasn’t much to look at but she more than made up for it later when we got back to her place, you know?” Followed by a wink and maybe a nudge.

Or he would sidle up to no one in particular on a Monday morning with: “Hey guys, how was your weekend? Mine was great! I had two separate women on the weekend and a third one just went home this morning.”

For all his social skills, if you could call them that, Augustus was terribly unprepared for his role and the volume of work. He couldn’t answer everyday questions even after several months on the job.

“Augustus, why is there such a large discrepancy between the inventory in the warehouse and what we have in the computer system?”

A shrug of the shoulders, followed by: “I don’t know,” was his reply.

“Augustus, why are we out of stock of so many items?”

A shuffle, a scratch on the chin, followed by: “I really don’t know.”

“Augustus, we seem to have too many slow moving items in the warehouse. I thought you were working on clearing those out in any way possible?”

A vigorous nod of the head was the response, followed by, “Let me check with my secretary on that.”

His lack of answers was starting to irritate the board of directors. After all, what were they paying him for?

As for his “experienced negotiating skills?” Within a few months of his being employed there, he managed to provoke one of the contract vendors and terminated a long standing relationship between them and the company. The vendor was calling for his head, after telling him to go f*** himself.

The axe finally fell after that last incident. Augustus and the HR manager were called into a high level board meeting, where the CEO tore him a new one. Someone cleared out his desk later that day and just about 6 months after they swaggered in, he and his ego were seen exiting the building. He was never seen or heard from again.

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