It was a nice enough morning as I recall. The sun was shining and the journey to head office was an easy ride for once. I was meeting my Director in NTL to review the plans for redundancies, and I was “under threat”.
The formal meeting went well, the regrets were expressed that all present were “at risk” and that “options would be investigated” but actually my heart wasn’t in it. I knew it was time to go. I’d been lucky enough to be in at the start of a new company that had grown hugely and some might suggest successfully, but it was now different. To put it simply “the suits had arrived”. The culture was being destroyed and the focus had no regard for customers or services and my heart wasn’t in it anymore.
Redundancy was offering a potential new dawn. I felt good. And as I walked through the office to return to my car, all the TV screens in the building were showing the same pictures. A tower block in New York on fire.
A “small plane” had crashed into a World Trade Centre building. Many people were “at risk” in the fire. The pictures seemed pretty benign until that moment when the second Jumbo flew low over Manhattan and into the second building. At that point it was clear that everything had changed.
The world was now “at risk” and my concerns about what might happen to me post redundancy were trivia compared to the concerns of the people in New York, and elsewhere, looking for loved-ones.
I sang God Bless America for the whole journey home and for most of the rest of the week. I found a new career, NTL became Virgin Media, New York remains scarred and is rebuilding. But the threat remains.