It Simply Happens
Last week, I attended the retirement party of one of the three most influential mentors I ever had: Mr. Marc Viggiano. It was a really nice send off, and deservedly so.
During the early years of my (so-called) career, Marc helped me become a better engineer. At the time, we were both smokers and we held many deep technical/philosophical conversations while puffing away on smoke breaks outside the building. Because of those priceless learning experiences, I don’t regret having wasted 10 years of my life sucking on coffin nails. The tradeoff was worth it.
When our small company started growing, Marc zoomed up the corporate ladder (as a result of true merit; not by being a suck-up or phony-crony). In spite of his executive rise, Marc always retained a sense of humility and kept his feet firmly planted on the ground. Since I remained in the trenches and strove for horizontal development while Marc moved up and strove for vertical growth, we pretty much lost touch and our interests diverged. But hey, thus is the process of life. It simply happens.