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"And that's my design plan. Are there any questions?" "It reminds me of Eqyptian Hieroglyphics. Are you sure they didn't patent it?" "Um...I don't think that's likely." "But there's still some risk?" "First of all, I didn't use Hieroglyphics. Secondly, the ancient Egyptians didn't have microchips. Thirdly, they didn't have patent laws." "Good point. " "Oh yeah? Then how did they build pyramids?" "Do some research on that question and get back to us next week" "Next on the agenda: why do our projects take so long?" "What?"
"This budget would only work if the project encountered no problems whatsoever." "So?" "All projects have unexpected problems. Therefore, this budget is almost certainly wrong." "Leaders do not plan for failure." "Do leaders make deceptive forecasts and later act shocked when things don't work out?" "No." "A leader first makes himself believe the lie, thus turning deception into an inspiring form of optimism. Observe." "GAAA!!! BELIEVE! BELIEVE!" "The swelling will go down in a few hours. Then we'll have a perfect budget." "What?"
The Boss: "Now Dilbert will explain what went wrong with our projects this year." DILBERT: "All of our problems were caused by a woman named Lisa." "Lisa never learned to act aloof and unapproachable. Sometimes she smiles and men she doesn't even know." "Gasp." "Gasp." "As you know, 90% of engineers are lonely men." "A permanent line formed outside her cubicle." "The engineers brought her food, gifts and poems that weren't as funny as they'd hoped." "Food, Gifts, Poems (bad)." "I recommend replacing Lisa with someone more like this." Alice: "What's THAT supposed to mean?" Asok: "My poems aren't funny?"
The Boss addresses a meeting, "All the important decision-makers in the company in this room." The Boss continues, "No little people are allowed because we'll be making important strategy decisions." The Boss continues, "First, let's make decisions about project Opal." The Boss continues, "Does anyone know what the project is or what we need to decide?" A man raises his hand and says, "My executive intuition tells me we should cut the budget by 10%." Another man turns to him and says, "I think Opal is one of your projects. It's named after your daughter." The first speaker grabs his own head and says, "Wait.. a new intuition is coming in now... it says to increase the budget." Dilbert asks the Boss, "Why are those meetings secret?" The Boss replies, "You don't want to know."
Dilbert: You've given me so many projects that I have two ways to fail. I can either miss all of my deadlines or I can reduce the quality of my work to rubbish. Which do you prefer? Boss: The class I took in active non-listening is really paying off. I need this by Tuesday.
CEO: I read an article that says leaders should acknowledge the achievements of their underlings. Have you done anything lately that warrants some praise? Boss: Well... I'm under budget because I forgot to staff one of our projects. CEO: Okay, I can work with that. Now I think I'm supposed to pat you on the head or something. Let's try that and see how we feel. Stop leaning in. Boss: Feels... so... good.
Wally: As I understand it, your job is to match employees with the right assignments. None of my projects turned out well, which means you did a terrible job. I'm not asking for an apology. Just follow your conscience.
Dilbert: You had a great idea bout upgrading our customer support software. Boss: I don't remember having that idea. Dilbert: It was genius. Boss: Well, that does sound like something I would suggest. Dilbert: We'll need budget approval, but that should be no problem for you. Boss: Duh. Obviously I'll fund my idea. It's genius. Dilbert: I'll need to delay my other project, but, as you said, those are lower priorities. Boss: I said that? Dilbert: It was very wise of you. Alice: How did you get funding for your idea? Dilbert: I had to bossify it.
CEO: Spare me the tedious technical details. I make my decisions based on the people involved. Dilbert: So you replaced your unsupported belief that you could spot winning projects with an unsupported belief that you can identify winning people? CEO: Stop making it sound dumb! Dilbert: Should I try paraphrasing it incorrectly?
Coworker: The software upgrade will be written and rolled out in three months. Dilbert: Has any project of this complexity ever been completed by the estimated finish date? Coworker: Not yet. We're confident we'll be the first. Dilbert: Is that because you're doing things differently from all of those who went before and failed? Coworker: No. We're doing things exactly the same way as the people who failed. Dilbert: Do you see what I'm getting at? Coworker: No, not really. And we expect to be on budget. Wally: Snork!