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The Boss addresses a meeting, "You can take 20% pay cuts or I'll have to downsize one of you." The Boss continues, "I know you're like a family but... Yes, Wally?" All of the coworkers are pointing at Wally. Wally doesn't know. He says, "Tell us more about the pay cut. That sounds promising."
Dilbert, Wally and Alice stand behind a man's desk. Wally says, "We're sorry to hear you're getting laid off, Bruce." Wally continues, "We calculated that if ten of your friends here took ten percent pay cuts then the company can keep you." Bruce says excitedly, "Gosh! You'd do that for me?" Wally replies, "No. We're here to look at your office furniture."
The Boss and a woman walk by Dilbert's cubicle holding folders. Leaning back in his chair to look out of the cubicle, Dilbert thinks, "Uh-Oh . . . the managers are going to another closed-door meeting." Dilbert thinks, "It must be about pay cuts or layoffs. I'm doomed. I'd better work on my resume NOW." He pulls nervously at his tie, his hair stands on end and beads of sweat fly from his forehead. The Boss sits around a conference table with three other managers. Reading from a document, he says, "Okay, so far our 'leadership vision' says 'we inspire employees to action.' Does anybody have upgrades?" Another man responds, "Nah."
Dogbert: the dogcart consulting company has reviewed the executive compensation plan as you requested. My conclusion is that you're already hideously overpaid, Im recommending ninety percent pay cuts and a whack in th head for each of you. I"ll bet you don't get much repeat business. Dogbert: Oh yeah, as if Id want to spend more time with you.
An employee from the finance department stands beside an overhead projector, giving a presentation to Dilbert and Alice. The man says, "Here's your latest budget cuts. But please don't kill the messenger from finance, ha ha!!" The man continues, "I recommended a 20% cut. A quick glance around the room tells me you're not on the success vector anyhoo, so nothing lost." The finance employee hangs out the window, tied up in the overhead projector's power cord. He says, "Tough room."
The Boss says, "Tina, I just learned that your pay is 20% below the industry average for your job." The Boss says, "I will correct this injustice, no matter what it takes!" Tine says, "You would do that for me?" The Boss says, "You have my word that I will lower the industry average!"
Dilbert: "My pay is below market. Can I have a 20% raise?" The Boss: "No, but I'll let you use two flat screen monitors in your cubicle so it feels like you're an evil genius in a secret lair." "Bu-Wa-HAHA!" Wally: "Who got a second monitor?"
Alice is sitting at her computer. The Boss approaches from behind with a package in his hand and says, "Happy service anniversary, Alice." The Boss continues, "We're out of twenty-year pins so I got twenty of the one- year pins." The Boss hands Alice the package and says, "You can pin these babies all over your blouse... or fishing hat if you prefer." The Boss continues, "The card says, 'To Kathy' but it was never opened. For some reason she quit the day she got her twenty pins." The Boss continues, "Incidentally, I have to charge you $262 for the pins. The company doesn't pay for them." Alice holds the box angrily. Alice responds, "First of all, I've only worked here for about six years.." The Boss interrupts, "Wow, you look older. Anyway, just give me the $262 and throw away eight pins and we'll call it good." Alice rolls up her sleeve and shakes with anger. She holds one arm back with the other. The Boss asks, "Why are you rolling up your sleeve? Are you going to pin them to your arm?
Asok says, "I thought my Elbonian kidnappers would hold me forever because you refused to pay the ransom." Asok says, "Then the Stockholm effect kicked in. I started identifying with my captors and beating myself." The Boss says, "And they let you go?" Asok says, "Apparently it looked contagious."
Asok: Wally, should I try to become indispensable so I won't be fired? Wally: No. Indispensable people end up working too hard because they can't risk showing anyone else how to do what they do. Asok: Being useless seems riskier. Wally: Have you seen the tie clip I got for 20 years of service?