I was extremely surprised by the telephone call from Johnny. He was very friendly and proposed a meeting. Although I know he is a terrible cad when it comes to woman, I broke one of my own rules (and many of my other rules in the next few weeks). I suggested meeting him at a fast food takeaway in my small town, where no one from work would see us together. Yes I was alone, and would not have done this two years ago when I first met him, but I felt tired and desperate.

When he arrived it was casual and he behaved himself. He told me about his small rival company, which he had established with financial help from his Chinese friend after the corporation had forced him out. He also told me about all the people (still working for the company) who were supplying him with valuable information. He offered me a job, creditors & debtors & R2 000 increase. I agreed and requested a contract.

At the next meeting he brought the contract and he told me he was not ready for me, I must work for the corporation until the December holidays so that I could get my bonus and I could start in January. I was so tired, putting in long hours and was very disappointed about the delay. The next 2½ months seemed like six months. I had plenty of leave days, because there was always an issue when I wanted to take off and I wanted to take all my leave before resigning but I reckoned that it would not be possible. I applied for 18 days leave and they approved it and on 4 Dec I was already on leave. I could not believe my luck. After 2 weeks, checked my bank account and received a measly 25% bonus. Johnny allowed his workers to have a full months leave and they got a full 13th cheque. I felt comfortable with the idea of working for Johnny again, because many people who had left the company were now working for him and they were all pushed out by the corporation. If I was able to get work with another company, there is always that worry will I fit in or will they hate me. I already know these people and they know me. After Christmas I decided well if I am going to burn bridges let me make a bonfire. I googled letters of resignations and found a scathing one which I adapted.

For a few days I edited, contemplated and finally had it fine tuned. It basically said that I was sick of doing the work for people who took the credit for my hard work and were in positions where they had the title but could not do the job. Plus I was resigning with immediate effect. I emailed the letter to some of the people in charge and asked them to submit it to their HR contact person. I sat and waited for the day they would contact me and demand that I work notice period. (another one of my rules broke, never leave a company in a bad way). I had made up my mind, I was not going to work notice and train someone and hand over all my knowledge after the way they treated me. Very early one morning, I went in and handed in the laptop, only the receptionist was in, that was good, no awkward explanations about where I was going or what about notice period. I walked out and did not look back.

A week later the receptionist phoned me to ask me for the password to the laptop. Then she said the corporation informed them that they could leave if they wanted to and all those who stayed would be incorporated with one of the other existing companies owned by the corporation. The premises would be occupied by a company selling paint brushes who were making a bigger profit than our company. Phew! Close call, I had gotten out just in time. Where would they have fitted me in. Those companies already have their accounts people they will not accept me with open arms. I started working at Johnny’s rival company. All the clients found out what was happening and started to close their accounts and opening accounts with Johnny. It is obvious he is growing much faster. The Durban and Cape Town staff also asked him for jobs now he is opening a branch in KZN and CPT. The first month was difficult for me, I did not have a laptop and I do not have access to the bank account yet, so it means relying on others to supply me with the info, waiting is not something I enjoy, but I got my pay even though I had nothing to do for about two weeks. Then my laptop arrived and I hope February will be the month when I will be able to say this was not a bad decision and with time I might have access to all the info I need. Thank you for reading.