I had just stepped back into the office when I heard someone say my name. I popped my head around the corner, “What?”
“When do you leave, Bridget?” Jesse, our lead web designer asked.
“That means you have 13 minutes Jesse.” Kelly, another designer said.
“13 minutes to what?” I asked.
“Don’t worry about it.” Jesse and Kelly said at the same time.
This was all very cryptic. It’d been a long day, I’d been fighting a migraine since the previous morning. Everyone around the office was giggling a little. I sighed. “Seriously, what’s going on?”
“Aww, look she’s all worried.” Channelle, another designer commented.
“It’s nothing bad.” Jesse assured me.
“It’s a deadline for Jesse, not for you.” Kelly chimed in helpfully.
I harumphed and sat back down. I wasn’t worried. I was impatient! No one likes being outside the loop, even for 13 minutes.
“What’s Jesse not telling me?” I typed to our senior account executive, Stacy.
“You’ll see.” she typed back.
“Man. I am never leaving the office again.” I type back
Stacy, “lols” me and then falls to IM silence.
The phone rings and I pick up. “Hi Melinda.” I say to our owner and Creative Director. “What’s up?”
“That marketing software you bought, did you install it on my machine?”
“No, not yet.”
“Ok, I’m on my way back. Can you download it? I may need it tonight.”
“Yeah, sure Mel.”
I head over to Mel’s computer and I can hear Jesse and Kelly giggling together. I fix them with my best “tell me what’s going on” stare.
“Don’t give me that look.” Jesse laughs at me. This sets Kelly and the rest of the office giggling all over again.
I sigh and give up. I start the dowloading and Melinda breezes in. Impatientish she hovers. “Will it take long?”
“No, I’ll be done in a minute Melinda.”
The minutes tick by and I finish the install.
I touch my supervisor on the shoulder as I pass her desk. “Lee, I’m headed out, unless you need me?”
“No, go on.” Lee says.
I hit shut down on my computer, start packing my bag.
“Hey Bridget,” Jesse says.
“Yeah?” I pop my head around the whiteboard that separates our desks from eye line view.
“Your shawl is very pretty.”
I blink at him. “What?”
“Your shawl. It’s pretty.” he says again.
The office starts laughing and then understanding dawns. “Is it everyone gets a compliment day, Jesse?”
The office starts laughing again and now I join them. That’s just the kind of guy that Jesse is.
See, like I said, it was a long day. Actually it’s been a long few days for the whole office, and we have several long weeks ahead of us. We’ve landed some huge pieces of business in the last few weeks, which is great, but we’re also short staffed and about to be more short staffed. One team member is leaving with her husband who is Navy and being sent to Texas. The other is about to join her husband in California. Of course we’re totally thrilled for both of them, but it does leave the question of what we do while we re-staff and on-board. We buckle down, we work harder, we lean on each other for support.
OrangeRoc is a small office. It’s a tight knit group. Jesse’s everyone gets a compliment day, seems like a small thing, and maybe in truth it is. But, it was also more of than that. We work in such close quarters, it’s easy for any sort of emotion to reverberate from one end of the small office to the other. Jesse turned a long day into a good day. He had the whole office in a good mood with one small compliment (or as the case may be, 10 small compliments. One for each of his coworkers). I left the office smiling, migraine and all, all the way back to the apartment, through making dinner and straight into writing this post.
The story and point I’m trying to make, isn’t just about one day and one happy ending. It’s about understanding the mood around you, what the people you interact with every day need, and having the ability to positively affect your environment. This is something I’ve talked about before. Being a force for positivity, actively and with purpose, every day, no matter what. A good way to end yesterday, and a good thought to start today off with. How will you affect the world around you today?