After Gene had worked there for ten years, he switched to another company, which was a large mens-tailored-clothing company. It was a very real challenge for me, he says, because I was used to the job I had had for ten years . I knew that company from the inside out, because Id come up from the operations aspect of that business. I thought I was a good IT director there, but could I duplicate that in another company where I hadnt started at the bottom?
It turned out that I could. I started as MIS director, with thirty-five people to manage. We needed to develop systems quickly. It was a real challenge, but it was something I had to do. I spent ten years there, and I considered the software we created head and shoulders above our apparel-industry peers in terms of apparel MIS.
But, after his firm merged with a sister company, Gene became disenchanted. I was the only manager to survive: Every one of my peers was let go, he says. Not only was I working fifteen hours a day, I couldnt stand the politics. I had to get out.