17 Aug Chapter 12: Decisiveness

Back at the office Marcs asked to have lunch with me, so I told him we should meet at the new seafood place around the corner. When I arrive he’s already there.

The hostess takes us to our table and I start looking over the menu. Like most places these days there’s a prominent item at the top called ‘Chef’s Pick.’ Our waitress comes by and asks me for my order.


“I’ll have the seafood salad please. And just water for me.”

She turns to Marcs and says, “I’ll be happy to bring you the chef’s pic—”

“No!” Marcs says a little too forcefully. He closes his eyes and calms himself. “I would like to order… the… the fish stew.” His strained expression changes to one of relief after the last word is out.

“And what would you like to drink?”

Marcs looks up at her anxiously.

“I’ll bring you a water too.” She takes our menus and walks back to the kitchen.

“Nice choice,” I say.

Marcs grins sheepishly.

“Sir—” He flinches before the word is even completely out. “Cevs, I wanted to talk to you about my position.”

“Sure. What about it? I’ve been very happy with your performance.”

“I… I’m glad to hear it. I just wanted to make sure I was meeting your expectations.”

“Marcs, how long have you been with Mizem?”

“It will be eleven years next month.”

“Exactly. Who does Laik go to when he needs to prepare for negotiating with vendors? You. Who do I ask when I’m looking for the most relevant customer case study? You. Who does everyone request when they’re doing account reviews? You.”

Marcs looks pleased and embarrassed at the same time. “Don’t get me wrong, I really enjoy being a specialist and helping the company in that way. But I would like to go beyond that. I’ve been working really hard at improving my… my decisiveness.”

I can see how important this is to him and how hard he’s worked to get to this point. “Marcs, I’m thrilled to hear that. I just don’t want you to stress yourself out too much. Whether it was from your time in the military or not I know how tough you are and how cool you can be under pressure, and those are really valuable traits to have. I don’t want to lose that.”

“Thank you, it means a lot to hear it coming from you.”

I get an idea. “Tell you what—we’ve been needing to switch payroll services for a while now but I’ve been putting it off. How about you head up the selection process? You can work with Laik on it.”

“That’s… that would be wonderful. I’ll get right on it.” Marcs is beaming.

Our food arrives and we dig in. When the dessert menus come he snatches mine out of my hand and says, “I’ll choose a dessert.”

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