Fish Tank

English: Great white shark at Isla Guadalupe, ...

English: Great white shark at Isla Guadalupe, Mexico, August 2006. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

This is Dale’s favorite part of the deal: the party afterward. It is not just the libations, music, and women in their best little, black dresses that he appreciates. No, all that is icing on the cake. He loves that all this celebration is happening because of him. He made this, and so many other negotiations in the past, work, and he gets to stand out of the crowd, beaming like the proverbial kid in a candy shop.

He knows, of course, that he did not do it alone. He makes sure everyone knows he appreciates the little people, the eager little worker bees that run around, setting his appointments and grabbing the hard files when he needed them. His conversations always make a point to turn, very briefly, to those who made the deal that much easier for him, in both companies, of course. They smile and laugh at his jokes and tell him what a great boss he is.

His boss pats him on the back as he shakes the other guy’s boss’s hand. It is never too late or too early to network. Dale does this with gusto. He never spends too much or too little time with any gathered group. He listens intently so he knows everything he needs to know about them. That is important, because you never know when you may be negotiating, or fighting, with them later. You never know what useful little tidbit might help you out later. Everyone is  your best friend and your worst enemy.

Men get a hearty pat on the back and women a gentle, not too intrusive, hand at the small of their back. You have to let them know how strong you are. They can smell weakness, and if you show any, you are as good as done. Dale will never let that happen.

No, he works the crowd slow but sure. He makes new contacts, new allies, and meets prospective new employers. Blind loyalty is a sign of weakness. He does all this and basks in his latest success, confident that the small fry in the pond can never take this shark.

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