“Please do Eric,” I hope you allow, “I haven’t had my fill of whiney-emo-chatter today.”
Did I detect on note of sarcasm in your voice, dear reader? Well, whether or not, I’ll take what I can get. One of the great frustrations of being a Mount Hermon intern is that you have to read some things that no self-respecting (which I shouldn’t claim to be) human being ought to read! Over the last several months I have been reading and discussing Jim Collins’ national-bestseller, Good to Great, or as I would call it, Simple Ideas Rehashed Until You Commit Seppuku with this Book. My title suggestion was ignored by his publishers.
Jim Collins’ Good to Great
I will give it to Jim, he knows how to take other people’s success stories and package them in such a way that he made a pretty penny himself. He gives us such witty analogies as ‘getting the right people on the bus” and “wash your cottage cheese,” and he has taught me how to curl up into a ball like a hedgehog (one of my favorite pastimes).
“Okay,” you interrupt (as usual), “where is this going, Eric? You’re not even doing that great of a job at complaining.”
My dear, and astute, reader, you are correct – my main purpose today is not to complain, but rather to follow Mr. Collins’ lead and embark on my own journey in capitalism! You see, one of Jim’s chapters is on what he calls “a level 5 leader,” and at this I thought to myself: Eric, is he speaking about some nerdy RPG (Role Playing Game, for you newbs) like Dungeons and Dragons? Naturally he was not, but that didn’t stop me from running with it.
I’ve never really played Dungeons and Dragons, but I’ve known a few nerds in my day
[Insert nerdy sound here.] My level 5 leader has a toupee of charisma and a +6 tie of recitation. [Pushes up glasses and another nerdy sound.]
Seriously guys, I think I could be onto something here! I could call it something like Associations and Accountants and you could create different character classes like Engineers, Accountants, CEOs, Investors, and Interns.
Potential Character Figurines for the Game
Okay, I can tell that you’re not sold on the idea, so allow for me to play Office Master and give you a possible scenario for my level 5 Leader.
A Level 5 Leader is gifted in both controlling employees and magic
Your Leader enters the corporate office, and something is obviously amiss. The foul stench of an alien presence permeates the halls. You proceed with caution. As you approach your lush corner office you are intercepted by your level 1 assistant. He informs you that there are a group of foreign investors in the boardroom. You can smell the hostile takeover.
A Horde of Foreign Investors
You slip into the boardroom, armed with Ostrich Leather Attaché Case forged by Jack Georges. The Foreign Investors swarm about the room, looking for blood. You whip out your +6 pen of trickery and begin battling your enemies. They cast a spell of offering good stock options, but you block with macho ego and then retaliate with a “for the good of the company” speech. The Foreign Investors begin to grow sleepy – your attack was successful. You practice your verbal agility and bullshit them into supplication. You are victorious in your first battle of the day! (You gained 1200 XP and $50,000 GP)
A Cantankerous Stockholder
As you leave the boardroom an impish man leaps out from behind the water cooler. Keeping your calm, you assess the situation: Samuel Chiggins, major stockholder, level 4. Chiggins announces that he will sell his stock to a rival firm unless his demands are met. You straighten your +57 tie of charisma and offer Chiggins a handshake of sedation. Chiggins takes your hand and you begin your verbal assault. Your veiled threats are too subtle to penetrate the old geezer’s ear hair, and you quickly change your battle tactics. Chiggins begins a brutal barrage of anecdotes about the company, but you are able to deflect by glancing at your +2 Rolex. Eventually you satisfy Chiggins by scheduling a meeting with him two weeks down the road, by which time his senility will make him forget all about his attack. (You gained 2000 XP and $63,000 GP)
A Rising Business Woman
As you return to your office your level 1 assistant once again stops you in the hall to inform you that a businesswoman is waiting in your office. You put up your guard and enter the room to find a level 3, business suit clad woman sitting on your plush leather sofa. You ask if you can be of service to her, and she begins to discuss the direction of her career. You recognize her as the woman who has been climbing the corporate ladder and decide to put on a concerned frown as she speaks. As she begins to push towards advancement and you deftly cast a spell of glass-ceiling and thus thwart her attempts at progress. Seizing the opportunity you offer to further discuss her career in your corporate hot tub on Friday night, she is unable to resist your poise. (You Gained 2300 XP, $70,000 GP, and a date for Friday)
You are on top of the World
You leave the office victorious and head toward your corporate jet for a quick trip to the Bahamas – you’ve earned it.
The Level 5 Leader Leaves a Little Richer
If you are reading this Jim Collins, get on the bus!