“Reporting for duty!”
– Hercules, Disney
I told Susie of the offer, that it was a good one and that I wanted to take it, that it would come with a raise (which Dr. F said it would) and advancement to a manager position. She was on my side, said it sounded great, and approached Chief with it, who it seemed was also on board. Things were moving forward.
Then, suddenly, something stalled in the works. Trouble is, no one can seem to pinpoint where. Dr. F said that he had gotten approval to pursue a transfer of departments, but the approval never came. He then called me up in a frenzy asking what I had told Susie originally, as I’d clearly made some mistake because HR seemed to think that I’d be completely quitting the university, and if so, they could not rehired me. I talked to Susie, she verified that I’d said that I merely wanted a transfer of departments and they’d understood so.
But more telling, he also backed away from the question of salary telling me emphatically that he had never discussed that with me. He had, by the way. He then told me that this confusion was my problem and that I had to find a way of handling it because he wasn’t going to get involved.
Anger showed up right quick. “What the hell is he saying? We did everything he told us to, after he’d confirmed that the transfer had been OKed!”
“That’s it! We’re in the soup! We’re going to lose our job, either of them!” Panic wailed.
“There might just be a misunderstanding,” Hope said with false cheeriness.
“Don’t be ridiculous,” Practicality snapped. “It’s clear Dr. F has ticked off his higher ups somehow. They wouldn’t work with him to get an exception to the hiring freeze to fill his empty position, and now that he’s found a way around it they’re miffed.”
“That doesn’t explain why he’s reneging on his offers to us,” Ambition said slowly. “We took his offer and acted on it in good faith, after he assured us that if we could get the department to approve it, the transfer would go through.”
“This whole organization is riddled with issues like this,” Paranoia hissed, hugging the walls, eyes darting for potential escape. “Panic’s right, we’re collectively sunk. He turned on us rather than go to bat for us. He turned on us!”
“I told you guys! I told you! No one ever listens to me, and look where it’s got you,” Guilt crowed, practically dancing a vindictive jig.
“Shut up,” Practicality growled, pacing the floor. “You’re no help. There’s been a mis-communication somewhere. What has been said that has been misconstrued? And by whom?”
“It’s not communication, it’s politics,” Panic said, shivering. “Dr. F isn’t exactly the darling of his division, this probably isn’t about us at all.”
“Sounds to me,” put in Reason, “that he probably only got verbal approval to do what he did. So he offered us the job, told whoever had approved that move, who told whoever was above that, and they said no. Which screws up the whole process.”
“Verbal doesn’t mean anything! If it’s not in writing it’s not worth a rattle,” Paranoia said frantically.
“Well, that’s certainly obvious now. So, what happens to us?” Ambition asked.
The next day, Susie pulled me aside and gave me a heart-stopping piece of news. The final answer was “No.” It had come down from the Dean himself, and the Dean wanted to meet with me on Monday.
“AUGHHHH!” Panic and Paranoia clutched each other only long enough to scream and both ran from the room.
(Monday: Part 3, The Interview)