It happened rather unexpectedly. During the last office party, after discussing the usual round of the latest technology gossip, the talk somehow shifted to how disgusting most of the CEOs of the large companies seem to be. You know, the buying-huge-yachts-shooting-elephants-in-Africa-lying-on-their-resumes CEOs that you hear a lot about in the news lately. That's when our CEO joined the conversation and started arguing that not all CEOs are a******s and a lot of them do plenty of good things, too. Apparently, he'd had one cocktail too many, because after we pressed him to give us examples, he said that he himself would go to Africa to work to help the elephants, to help reverse the damage done by other CEOs.
Next Monday, after researching the elephant volunteering programs over the weekend, we presented our CEO with a plan:
- we would send him to the African desert,
- in summer,
- where the air cools down to 110F during the night,
- to build stone walls around the water sources, to make the water accessible to both people and elephants,
- for a week,
- where he would go without taking a single shower, because the water is so scarce there, and, worst of all,
- be without WI-FI or cell coverage.
Did we mention it's for the whole week? Nice, huh? That should teach him how to defend his CEO buddies next time!
Of course, being a CEO, he was trying to outsmart us, saying he did not mean it like that. He would rather just donate some money, etc. But we would have none of that and stood our ground. Work means work, not just writing a check or giving a speech! Well, he said, at least I'll fly first class to Africa, to which we said, no way, you are going to fly coach just like other volunteers do. "OK", he said, "I'll fly coach, but only if you pay for it."
That set us back a bit, but we were back in no time. "We will ask the good people who buy our software to chip in, and make no mistake, you are going to Africa and you are going to work you a** off building the water stations for the elephants!" (No, we didn't actually say that. We are not that crazy, but you get the idea.)
So, here we are. Would you like to see our CEO go to Africa and work for a week there, in the desert heat, without taking a shower, mixing the cement, carrying stones, and building the walls around the water wells? We thought so!
And no matter how much you donate, you will have earned a huge thank-you on behalf of the African elephants and you will definitely go to elephant heaven!
Our CEO has returned from the trip, alive and happy! Here is the photo of the finished water well that he and other volunteers built in the African desert: