I know there are some people who obsess about being a buyout guy, and crave (rather desperately, I might add) the kudos, self-worth and magnificence that comes with it. But for someone like me – you know, a natural communicator, and stuff – it’s always been about the relationship piece. Which is why I’m perfectly suited to this new line of work.
I suppose you’re wondering what led to my completely voluntary decision. Well, apparently Tamara’s not the hopeless wet blanket I thought. After our breakfast with the Canadians, she got the IT guy to check her computer – and discovered that I may have remotely accessed her email (since he was my partner in crime, so to speak, I assume he was acting under duress). She then checked the records from my Big Shop-owned BlackBerry (I know – such an egregious invasion of privacy!) and discovered that each time, I’d called my old boss shortly after. I told her we were just talking about football, but she rightly pointed out that a) I knew nothing about football and b) he’d just called her to suggest bidding jointly on Project Catflap.
“Look, Tamara, you’re putting 2 and 2 together and making 5. Let’s agree to disagree, and move on.”
“You don’t get it, do you, Pye? It doesn’t matter what 2 and 2 equals, because either 2 would be enough to fire you by itself. So that’s what I’m doing. Pye, you’re fired. Clear your desk and get out. And know that in the unlikely event that anyone offers you another job in this industry, I will take great pleasure in giving you literally the worst reference that a human being has ever received.”
“Tamara… Aren’t you’re over-reacting a little?”
“No, Pye. Quite the reverse. I should really have you arrested. But I can’t, because it’d make us look bad.”
Happily, I knew for a fact that John T. Leviathan, our legendary managing partner (and a big fan of mine), would never stand for this nonsense. “Seriously. You can’t fire me. I’m JTL’s blue-eyed boy.”
“Pye, your entire buyout career amounts to one olive oil deal that is currently 72% behind plan. If you weren’t so pointless and insignificant, JTL would be here tearing out your entrails in person.”
That was the last straw. “Tamara, any more of this, and I’m afraid I’m going to have to resign.”
“Are you genuinely insane, Pye? How can you quit a job you don’t have anymore?” She picks up the phone. “Security? There’s someone I need you to escort off the premises.” And that was that.
“My god, Pye, this is terrible,” my old boss said, when I called and told him what had happened.
“I know, right? Nightmare.”
“Total nightmare. How am I supposed to know what Tamara’s up to now you’ve gotten yourself fired?”
“But boss… What about me? What’ll I do?”
“Oh, you’ll be fine. Just go to a secondaries fund or something.” (What a joker. As if!)
Still, when I sat down and thought about it with a large scotch or twelve, I quickly realised that this was actually an opportunity in disguise. So while I wait for word to leak and offers to start flooding in, I’m doing a bit of work for an old Cambridge chum who has his own PR agency. Great guy, and fascinating work that really plays to my unparalleled people skills. All pro bono so far, but he says he’ll think about paying me in the new year.
Of course, by then I’ll probably be knee-deep in buyout job offers. Just waiting for that phone to ring. Any day now, I’m sure…