Sign #1: When you wake up in the morning you feel as if you’ve slept for two, three thousand years. But before you can relish the feeling you realize that you must be late to your company—except you can’t remember what it is your company does or even where it is your company is located. In a panic, you pick up your phone and type what you assume is your company’s name into a map to get directions.
Sign #2: When you enter the lobby of your company’s building, the security guard stops you and asks for your name. You tell the security guard not to worry, that you work upstairs and have a hundred emails waiting. When the security guard asks you to leave, you go to the coffee shop next door and think about how strange your company is.
Sign #3: When you sneak into the building through the back exit and take the elevator to the 22nd floor, you again meet resistance in the form of a locked door to the main office. You sit on the couch in the office lobby and avoid eye contact with the administrative assistant. As you pretend to tie your shoes, you think about how your company may not be the best fit for you.
Sign #4: When one of your coworkers exits the elevator, you tell the administrative assistant that it’s email time and follow your coworker to the door. You let them scan their keycard while you open the door and ask if they’re free for lunch.
Sign #5: When you sit down at the first open desk, you remove a banana from your computer bag and tidy up several items within and around your immediate area. Wanting to make an impression on the CEO, you also tidy up the empty cubicle next to you. For the first time all morning, you think about how great your company is.
Sign #6: But when you attempt to log into your computer, you discover that your credentials don’t work. Even worse, when prompted to enter your email address on the “Forgot Password” page, you read that your computer thinks your email address doesn’t exist. Stunned, you read on and learn that your computer wants you to try again and maybe contact your local IT team. You lean back in your chair, place your hands on your head, and let out a nervous sigh.
Sign #7: After exploring the office in search of your IT team, you realize that your company must have two, three thousand people. Just then, you see one of your coworkers approaching from afar. In a panic, you wave to them. The coworker is so far away that you exaggerate your waving motion. When your coworker is closer, you tell them that you thought that was them and then ask if the IT team has moved. When they inform you that the IT team should still be located on the northwest side, you sigh to express relief that the IT team hasn’t moved to a new building.
Sign #8: When you find the IT team—there’s 28 of them—you clear your throat to get their attention. They all stop what they’re doing and you tell them about your computer issue. The sight of their blank, uncaring stares unsettles you to your core. Scared, you escalate the issue by shouting that the company is under attack and that you need your computer to email the CEO.
Sign #9: When security escorts you out of the building, you gaze up to the 22nd floor and think about the morning. As you walk down the street, you come to terms with your company. So they’re strange, you think. What company ain’t? On your walk home, you stop at the grocery store and walk down the banana aisle. You place a few hundred in your cart and smile knowing that tomorrow will be a new day.