Was I the only one that got this "vibe"?

[Correction – I didn’t intent on calling the author’s of Freakonomics “duds” – I meant “dudes, and have fixed it below… and I like their blog!]
I went to lunch with my ex-boss today. Actually, I worked for him for five years. Then he worked for me for five. Then we did a startup, and he was CEO – I left after a few months for a couple reasons – first, the direction the company took changed from developing our own web application to becoming a WiFi test/development shop – that’s cool – we had a lot of skill in that area. Second, the company couldn’t afford to pay me (and I wasn’t adding a lot of value in their new venture). Add into that a lot of personality/business crap that was mostly related to the fact that all of these guys (and girl!) used to work for either me, or someone that reported to me, and the mechanics just weren’t right. I wasn’t having fun, and I know many of them weren’t.

It was easier to leave then stay, and it was best for me, them, and the company I still own a piece of.

But besides the CEO, I have had VERY little contact with any of this team since I left in February – until today, when the CEO and I were at lunch, and four of my former employees/former coworkers walked in and were seated at the booth right next to our table. What are the odds in the seventh largest city in the nation, with all of the restaurants we have, that they are seated 3 feet away from us? I’m sure that freakonomics dud dude could do the math – I can’t :).

Anyway, I have a hell of a lot of respect for these guys – they are smart… but I got the sense that they weren’t really comfortable with me being there, and that’s disappointing. Sure they worked for me – but there was also a time when all of us were friends, and now, somehow, I think we aren’t anymore.

It’s not their loss, or mine – it is our loss. Those of you that know me know I am a people person – so this just bothers me!



  1. Thanks Paul – good advice. I think that’s exactly what I will do. I know there is some bad blood of some type, and I think I know why – but it’s a petty reason (if I am right) and it’s no excuse for ending a freindship (much less a handful of them).

    If they don’t accept my olive branch, then as you say, I have lost nothing.

    But *doing* nothing about this – even if it’s just in my mind only won’t work… I need to know that we are friends – or that we aren’t.


  2. Deannie, sorry kiddo, but I’m not with you on THIS one… Rob soaked in cologne is NOT going to get him friends .. at least not the ones he’s looking for! πŸ˜‰

  3. Rob,
    I think I KNOW the guys. No.. I KNOW the guys.

    If there’s something about that whole thing that bothers you: invite them to lunch .. and get it out in the open: talk about.
    TELL them: It’s nothing business… it’s personal!

    Just plain and simple that what ever happened businesswise… you think they’re great guys and would be happy to call them friends .. and invite them to be just that: friends.

    The worst that could happen is that they say No Thank You. In which case you have lost nothing. You can only win here.

    Just my 2 cents.

  4. more importantly, what cologne did you have on?!? I recommend the one from Abercrombie & Fitch…

    πŸ˜‰ Hang in there, they probably just didn’t know what was up and got worried