Two weeks before the date was set to move the large new ship from the dry dock into the sea, the master shipmover was approached by the young apprentice. Even though the apprentice was young, he had been put in charge of designing the new rollers connected to the bottom of the ship that allowed it to be moved to the sea.
“I have come to show you how to move the new type of ship from the dock into the sea”, the young apprentice said. “This type of ship is new, so moving it is a bit different than what you are used to. That’s why I am here today – well in advance so that I can help you!”
The master shipmover shrugged and let the young apprentice show him the new way of moving the ship, but the master paid little attention. “Yes, I know I know”, the master said. “I can do that, now go away and leave me to be master”. The young apprentice agreed and told the master shipmover that he just needed to ask and the apprentice would gladly answer any questions. But the master shipmover just shook his head.
The young apprentice left and didn’t hear anything back from the master.
So on the day the ship was ready to sail, the young apprentice went to see the ship but was surprised to find it still in dry dock. Even worse – the master shipmover had gathered all the other masters around him and was moaning.
“This is a new ship and I have no idea how to move it”, the master was shouting, “and the young apprentice wasn’t here this morning to show me!”
All the masters turned on the young apprentice and yelled at him for not being supportive of the master shipmover on this important day.
The young apprentice tried to explain what he had done two weeks previously, but the masters didn’t listen to him. All they cared about was the fact that the ship was still on dry ground – today. It was obviously the fault of the young apprentice for not showing up.
And the moral of this (BigCo) story: Some people are not interested in how you may have helped them in the past. If they can lay the blame on you for something that they think you should have done for them, they will. They will always wait until the date of the ship launch before yelling for the apprentice.