To all my Boeing friends and colleagues,
You might think the title of today’s post is just some sentimental drivel as I say farewell to all of you after twenty years of faithful (mostly) service. This would be incorrect. In 2002 I said these exact words to a man who showed up at my hotel room door, dressed only in a towel. This man, in fact:
I’ll leave that to your lurid imaginations. Or, if you you know Chris, ask him to tell you the story. I count it as one of my signature achievements in this life.
But I digress, as usual. On May 4th I will spend my last day working at Boeing. After twenty plus years with the company it is a bittersweet goodbye to so many people who have enriched my life.
It is easy, perhaps even commonplace, to bludgeon huge corporations like Boeing. I’ve certainly done my fair share of bitching and moaning about the petty bureaucracy, misanthropic executives and other forms of corporate pathology at Boeing and any other large business.
But I can tell you that in spite of those frustrations, my time at Boeing has generally been spent in the company of many kind, generous, and smart (really smart) people. Without exception, my managers have been understanding of family commitments and have encouraged my education and professional advancement. My co-workers have become friends and confidants. When you spend half of your waking hours with the same clowns for a few years, they start to grow on you.
So thank you, Boeing, for twenty good years. When I consider what I and my family have gained, twenty years of my time seems like a pretty good deal. We have put two children through private school and college debt free. Our medical insurance has covered more than one serious accident and illness. And I actually have a pension and retirement plans upon which to launch this next great adventure.
And thank you to all my friends and colleagues, past and present who have made a giant corporation something much more personal. Together, in ways large and small, we have created products that have transformed our world. Plus, we had a few laughs along the way. I think that’s something we can all be proud of.