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Opinions of Saturday, 3 July 2021

Columnist: Cameron Duodo

One step forward, two steps back

The author, Cameron Duodo The author, Cameron Duodo

K1: KOO, I have resigned!

K2: I don't believe you! But you love that job!

-Koo, there sometimes comes a time when one has to take more than “love” into consideration when one needs to act.

-Well, since when have you become such a philosopher? I have always regarded you as a hard-headed realist?

-Ahah! I knew you would twist things and make me responsible for my own anguish, instead of empathising with me! Won't you even ask me why I am resigning?

-Oh, Koo, I suppose I am too shocked to think clearly. Sorry about that. Will you now tell me the reason, please?

-Koo, it's the boss's wife!

-What? Has she taken a fancy to your bald pate and proposed love to you? Hahahahaha!

-Hahahahaha! She's taken a “fancy” to my “bald pate? What about my paunch? Or my....–

-Hey Charlie! You don't have to do a whole listing of your genome characteristics for me! I didn't mean the question literally.

-I was just being sarcastic. Have I ever in my life mentioned your “paunch” before? Man, if you want to stop drinking beer, go ahead and do so! It's your body!

-You see what I mean about your lack of empathy?

-Cut it out, man! We're not talking about the shape of MY body! I never... (tschew!)... Will you tell me the reason or not? Your boss's wife did what?

-It's like this: we have mounted an advertising campaign based on our ability to import goods from the less well-known foreign fashion centres – Austria, Belgium, Luxembourg, Lichtenstein and Argentina.....

-Argentina? Do you want to import Maradona outfits?

-Hahahaha! Very funny! No – don't you know that that's where the tango came from? A lot of the cultural stuff that the Spanish have abandoned are still in vogue there. We want to tap that for “rarity value”. Once a wealthy lady knows that what we're selling can never be worn by any other woman....

-Oh, I see! Your boss's wife one of those moneyed women with vanity embedded all across their brains?

-No! she is the very opposite of the of a fashionista. She has a huge contempt for those “who flaunt their wealth about”. So, and as soon as our first advert appeared on TV, she stormed into the office and tore into her husband. We were encouraging “conspicuous consumption” in Ghana, she charged. It was “obscene” that at a time where everyone is scared crazy of Covid-19, we were advertising what she called “tutus-of-the-tits!.....”

-Hahahahaha! “Tutus-of-the-tits”? The lady must be extraordinarily dexterous in the verbal sphere!

-Ha! You don't know her! She's a PH.D from a US Ivy League institution! Her husband is scared crazy of her, and when she came and tore into our campaign, he just folded up and asked us to withdraw all the TV adverts, though we had paid for them. Upfront!

-Boy oh boy! So you, as Chief of Marketing, put in your resignation?

-What other honourable cause was left to me, huh? We in the creative department are supposed to bring ideas that will enhance our bottom line, right? Well, we hit upon a campaign that can be a unique winner in the psychological arena, r9ght? We say, “Everyone is in sombre mood because of Covid, right? Why not tempt those who are sick of ugly face masks and school-girl hand mittens? The adventurous romantics? I mean, the woman wouldn't even listen to our rationale!

-So you quit?

-So I quit. Because we in fashion live in a competitive world. If you are to survive in it, you must be more imaginative than the opposition. Above all, we must believe in our own presentation to our potential customers at any particular time. We cannot allow orthodox prejudices to subvert our core function, which is to look after the bottom- line. And if you are fighting a war, and you discover that your commanding General has no faith in the strategy he and his war-planning team have themselves developed, how can you follow him to fight successfully in the war and achieve victory?

-You're right. Soldiers depend on morale to give of their best. Doing that may mean their getting killed in battle. So, if they go into battle with only a “half-belief” in their own cause, their will to fight would be automatically undermined....! And you don't think your boss could have convinced his wife that you were on a warpath?

-That's besides the point, isn't it? First, the woman must not be allowed to dictate to a whole team of creative executive, who know their business very well indeed. And secondly, business is business and as she has no formal position in the firm, she shouldn't have....

-Hashanah! I see now that you are quite naive. Have you ever been involved in a divorce case?

-NO!

-Ahah! Your boss knows what's good for him. Few businesses are worth getting divorced for. Besides, the divorce court might – hahahahaha! – hand her the entire business, anyway! Do you know how the business got its seed capital?

-No!

-Hmmmm! Anyway, if you have done what you think you should do, then case closed. You can't operate successfully in an enterprise that takes one step forward and then takes two steps back!

-That's my man! With your support, I am sure I can endure the next few days when I shall be unbeez, looking for a new opening!

-You're welcome! What are friends for, my dear Koo?