“Where are the whips?”
“I’ve already mentioned this, Mr. Nak, but since you ask we do not employ whips here.”
Mr. Nak, a shade under seven feet tall and entirely composed of lean and efficient muscle, leaned down to look her in the eye. She’d people with similar gleams in their eyes when dealing with the Board. Fangs were new, though.
“I can get you whips” advised Mr. Nak “if you need them.”
“We shan’t be needing whips, Mr. Nak, now let’s move on to your orientation.”
“When I was only a pup, I ate the eyeballs of one who claimed my mother was a coward. I tore the spine from a horse in motion to prevent the escape of a rider and I have faced the wrath of the Dark Lord and lived to tell about it!”
The group fell silent.
“To be honest,” said Sharon “it’s going to be tough working out which of those statements was the lie and which were the two truths.”
Nak put his head on one side.
“Is that so?” He scratched the back of his neck. “It all seems simple to me. I mean, no one survives the wrath of the Dark Lord.”
“Well in that case, I think that’s the lie” said Steve, the new accountant. Nak threw back his head and bellowed a laugh.
“You fall for any ruse! I would slaughter your whole clan you are so stupid! You cannot ripe the spine from a running horse! Who would be foolish enough to try such a thing! To stop a fleeing rider, you lie in the path of the horse and slash the belly as it goes over. The horse dies! The rider stops! And you get a tasty snack!”
Steve almost made it to the waste bin before he threw up. Almost.
“I have never favoured the axe” said Mr. Nak, perplexed. “Why should I bring an axe to the office?”
“We just thought…” said Norman, who worked in I.T. “that, you know, you…might?”
Mr. Nak thought about this quite carefully.
“One the one hand,” he said eventually “the axe is not a great weapon for dealing with armour. For that, I like the warhammer, or a simple thin dagger. On the other hand, if you make assumptions about a person’s culture based on stereotypes and biased reporting, you run smack into the company Equality and Diversity policy.”
“I…I…” said Norman, aware that a middle manager had lost her job in an unguarded moment’s frustration when she dropped the N-Bomb.
“Dat” said the Orc, with a fearsome and toothy smile “racist.”
“I think the key, going forward, is to leverage our market position by synergising across our core values and upscaling into blue sky markets. How does everyone else feel?”
“Well,” said Mr. Nak “speaking as someone new to the business, I can see several bleeding edge opportunities that just scream our mission statement. We need to grab that vision with both hands.”
After the meeting, Sharon took him to one side.
“How’re you doing?” she said. Mr. Nak adjusted his tie and sipped some coffee.
“Really well, Sharon. I feel like I belong.”
“Oh? Excellent. What made the difference?”
Mr Nak smiled.
“When I heard someone talking about creating market space by utilizing a cross discipline synergy to reinforce the company values at a workface level. That was the moment when I realised where you keep the whips.”
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