Thursday, August 11, 2005

My First Ever Business Trip

When I arrived for work on Monday morning of this week, I was startled to see an e-mail from none other than the #1 head honcho owner of my firm (we'll call him Top-Dog) sitting menacingly in my Inbox. I timidly opened the message, read slowly, and gulped when I realized that he wanted to have a meeting with me that very morning...ASAP!

We met shortly after that (once I'd had time to toss back a cup of coffee and smoke a couple of cigarettes to calm myself.) It turned out that one of our out of town clients was having some sticky issues regarding their in-house accounting. Top-Dog wanted to meet with me to discuss some of the problems and to schedule a tele-conference with me, the client and Top-Dog later that afternoon.

The end result of all of this was that everyone involved decided that I should go to the client's office to straighten these issues out.

Tuesday night I left New Orleans to drive three hours to Mississippi to meet with the client. This is not the first time I've been sent to a client's office, but it is the first time I've had to stay overnight in a hotel to do it. This was also the first time I'd worked so closely with and directly under Top-Dog, which had me nervous as hell. I've got great client-relation skills and I know it, and my accounting skills certainly aren't bad, but since I've only been in practice for a year and seven months my confidence isn't too great in that department. Going into it, I knew that the outcome of this meeting would weigh heavily in my further career development with this firm because I have heard from others in the office that when Top-Dog feels you're moving up, he'll give you more work. When you get the first big project with him, how you perform will greatly influence his future decisions about giving you more work, promotions, and raises.

It was an interesting trip, as I'd never really driven up I-55 before, so I was able to see some scenery previously unseen. My hotel in Mississippi was nothing special at all, though I did have a King-size bed all to myself. I got into town pretty late, so I wasn't able to get out to see the town.

I woke up the next morning, spent eight hours in the client's office and then another three hours driving home. All in all it was a great experience, but pretty exhausting, and I'm glad to be back.

As a side note I might add that I did a kick-ass job doing what needed to be done at the client's office.