‘We all know that right now it’s 2:30 in the afternoon central standard time here in Chicago. But it’s also 3:30 in New York, 1:30 in Denver and 12:30 in the afternoon in California.’

‘Excellent. I like it that  you see the time in a broader perspective of the entire country and not only from where we sit here in the Midwest.’ He shifts his gaze to the consultant sitting next to him. A slight smile crosses his lips as he begins to answer.

‘Well, my colleague here is absolutely right. We no longer can look at the time in the narrow confines of where we are currently. But since you’re an international organization, we need to go beyond the confines of the United States and look at the global time. For example, when it’s 14:30 here in Chicago, it’s 21:30 in the Western Europe and 03:30 in the morning the next day in Hong Kong.’ The CEO is obviously impressed by the second consultant’s world view of his business venture and hands out appropriate appreciation to him with an encouraging  friendly smile while shifting his gaze to the third and the final candidate, who seems to be somewhat lost in her thoughts. Feeling the pointed gaze upon herself, she puts down her memo pad filled with scribbles and doodles and a series of Xs and Os, gently putting her pen on top of the pad, plants her elbows firmly on the table, rests her chin on the bridge of her entwined fingers, she levels her gaze with that of the CEO’s and smoothly lets out.

‘Well, what time you want it to be?’

‘Guess, who got hired?’ Asks Susan with the cutest dimpled smile, which can only be erased  with a kiss. So that’s what she does!

I wish one of the consultants I had to deal with were as sweet and sexy and as professional. In fact, the consultants I was subjected to were all men, dodgy and full of themselves. Pontificating, pretending and patronizing bastards. I have had one too many brush with the bunch of them and as a result had come to disdain most of them. I can sincerely say that there was no love lost between them and me when and if we were forced to cross paths.

Some of my contempt for the consultants came from my days at the GATF, where I got to experience first hand how intimidated the people were when we walked in to audit their plants. A couple of total strangers are there to observe and analyze and report on them. Everyone is nervous, trying to be on their best behavior and therefore not being their natural selves. And that’s what most of the consultants are counting on.

There was a phase when us Playboy managers were made to attend a series of consulting sessions with the so called experts on the modern management. The first one of such surveys titled Management Practices and Tactics Feedback Report, had me placed as one of the company’s most popular managers or as John Mastro put it, I’m not as damn popular as you’re. The very man who had hired me, based on his gut feeling and some feedback from the plant supervisor at the printing company. John had his ways of doing things, and yet, no one would argue that he was one of the best in the industry. But unfortunately, that’s not how the young consulting Turks saw it.

The second set of consultants focused on the inter-departmental synergy and reported me to be not a team player. (read, I didn’t fall at their feet and touch their toes with reverence!) Because I refused to fall for their ruse of finding faults in my relationship with my direct reports. The conversation went something like this:

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