You can’t always get what you want
But if you try sometime, you just might find, you get what you need.
I like the Rolling Stones. I like this song. But aside from it just being a great song, it’s some of the best advice I’ve heard in music. For the last 3 days it’s been playing in my head.
At my work, we recently laid off a employee. They were a bit of a screw up, very bad in communicating, slow to finish their task, all by all we were better off without them. We’re still dealing with the fallout of this less than adequate person. One client in particular, he needs to get 2014 finished this month, or get in deep trouble with the tax office. This former coworker had 2014 only finished until August. After the client had a meeting with my boss, he came to see me. My boss had told him I would be his best bet to fix the mess. As we were talking my mind was racing. We want to keep this client. I didn’t feel right about asking the guy for extra money to work over time. My kids wouldn’t like me staying in the office longer than I already do. I could work from home, but…
I was thinking about the Piece of shit computer I had standing on my desk. It was on it’s last breath, over ten years old, I got it from my boss after my divorce so I would at least have access to the Internet. A former work station, tiny little hard disc drive, nothing but the very basic hardware, but it was something. It was meant as a stopgap. That had been stopping the gap for 3 years. When I did have a bit of extra cash I opted to get my daughter a laptop instead of replacing it.
-I was talking out loud at this point- I could work from home, but I doubt my computer would even run the new version of the program I need, let alone have the space to install it.
To which the client responded “Oh, I have a computer at home no one is using. It used to belong to my son”
While he couldn’t tell me the specs, he mentioned it was only a couple of years old and ‘looked like a modern computer’. Now my mind is racing. I would be giving up my evenings and weekends, no one expects anyone to do that for free. But setting a price for work that our company supposedly already had done, well, that’s just wrong. Unless…I took a breath, I didn’t have anything to lose, right? “Well, if it’s true that computer is just standing there…I am willing to do the work at home, get everything done by the end of the month, for the computer.” It couldn’t be a worse computer than the one I already had.
The client laughed, looked trough his notes and then said: “I need 2015 by the end of May. If you do that, too, we have a deal.”
That’s when the music started playing in my head and I was dancing on the inside. I didn’t seriously expect the guy to go for it. But since he did, I really wasn’t expecting the system he brought to the office the next day. I am now looking at this text editor on a 19 inch wide screen monitor, instead of the 15 inch with failing colors. I am no longer waiting minutes for any and all actions I do on the computer. It runs videos without freezing, skipping or weird colored blocks.- I can play other formats than .avi-
All that is cool, but the awesome part is it has a 3D acceleration graphics card. Probably the client’s son was a gamer as well. I can play games again.
Okay so not the newest coming out and not on the highest settings, but games. Real games. Not spider solitaire, which my daughter had mockingly dubbed ‘the most interesting game in the world’. It’s not the top of the line gaming platform I wanted, but it is exactly what I needed. And all just because I tried.
The point of this story isn’t to brag. Okay so maybe it’s a little bit to brag. But the bigger point is to give a example how you should never stop trying. Even if you feel it’s a long shot. Even when you’re sure it won’t work. It can’t hurt to try.