Edward William Bok > The Americanization of Edward Bok > Page 127



Edward William Bok (1863–1930). The Americanization of Edward Bok. 1921.

Page 127

“This is a young-looking crowd,” said Mr. Scribner one day, looking over his young men. And his eye rested on Bok. “Particularly you, Bok. Doubleday looks his years better than you do, for at least he has a moustache.” Then, contemplatively: “You raise a moustache, Bok, and I’ll raise your salary.”

This appealed to Bok very strongly, and within a month he pointed out the result to his employer. “Stand in the light here,” said Mr. Scribner. “Well, yes,” he concluded dubiously, “it’s there—something at least. All right; I’ll keep my part of the bargain.”

He did. But the next day he was nonplussed to see that the moustache had disappeared from the lip of his youthful advertising manager. “Couldn’t quite stand it, Mr. Scribner,” was the explanation. “Besides, you didn’t say I should keep it: you merely said to raise it.”

But the increase did not follow the moustache. To Bok’s great relief, it stuck!

This youthful personnel, while it made for esprit de corps, had also its disadvantages. One day as Bok was going out to lunch, he found a small-statured man, rather plainly dressed, wandering around the retail department, hoping for a salesman to wait on him. The young salesman on duty, full of inexperience, had a ready smile and quick service ever ready for “carriage trade,” as he called it; but this particular customer had come afoot, and this, together with his plainness of dress, did not impress the young salesman. His attention was called to the wandering customer, and it was suggested that he find out what was wanted. When Bok returned from lunch, the young salesman, who,



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