The Value Proposition

“Let’s hear from everyone,” says the boss.
“What is your value proposition to the firm?”

It’s our Tuesday morning team meeting.
We bring breakfast and discuss a topical issue.
Today I brought toast with peanut butter.

“Magnus? Want to kick us off?”

The toast smells delicious.
I got it from a stall at the tube station and it’s still warm.
It’s halfway to my mouth when the boss asks.

I put the toast down on the table and look at it.

“Of course, another way to approach this,” I say,
“would be to turn the question around and ask
what is the firm’s value proposition to us?
Is it attractive, credible and distinct?
Does it give our work meaning?
Does it motivate us to go the extra mile?”

I pick up my toast and bite.
The warm peanut butter tastes sensational.

As I eat, I discern
that my boss regrets asking me.
And I sense that my time here
is drawing to an end.

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