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Thank you Do-hower!

4 weeks of paid time off: Two in Namibia and two on a private safari in Botswana. Including Victoria Falls and a tour of the Okovango Delta. Unique, fantastic, amazing. After a month’s break, back to the office… that’s really tough. You would think. You can find out in the blog why I never went to work this motivated on Monday and how my boss achieved that…

For many, the summer vacation will be over soon. The last Sunday evening of their highly deserved break, some people think about how fast the time went by and how great another week of vacation would be. Real anticipation rarely occurs. Still, the office and everyday life are waiting. How this feels after four weeks of time off is something I know all too well from personal experience. And that’s wonderful. How can that be?

When I was back from Africa after exactly four weeks, I found a decent stack of mail in my mailbox. Including a letter from my then boss Daniel Zanetti. His writing was unmistakable. Curiously, I opened the envelope. What I found inside almost blew me away. Here the letter in its original wording:


Hi Ralph

I am glad that you two are both healthy and finally back. Time passes by quickly, I know, but what you experienced will remain. That’s something you’ll always remember…

Ralph, I would like to take this opportunity to thank you. During your absence, it really became clear how much you have done for our company and how well you manage your department. Carole was able to work with your structures efficiently, always stayed on top of things and was in full control. In addition, I took three hours to go through all “Ralph Hubacher files”. I was and am impressed by your work and have never had an employee who did as great of a job as you did. You really have a huge potential and I am confident that you will achieve a great deal at NZP or elsewhere. Go get it!

You can congratulate Carole because she has done a brilliant job during those 30 days. I am very proud of her, because representing you is not for wimps…

In addition to great new projects and many positive perspectives, there is still a bit of work waiting for you!

Take your time to ease back into it, get an overview and take over again. With you, our sales department truly is in the best hands possible.

See you soon and thank you very much for everything.


I was speechless and still am today, 9 years later. Anyone who now thinks he would like to have such a boss as well can ask himself two questions: Am I a manager myself and if so, shouldn’t I be the one to get the ball rolling? And secondly, which amazing colleague will return from vacation soon and how will I surprise him?

By the way: Of course, you can also wait for someone to help you ease back into working after your time off…but I recommend raising the standard for your company yourself.

Ralph Hubacher

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