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Wally: You're looking at the new vice president of zombie projects. The projects that will neither succeed nor be canceled are transferred to me so the other VP's avoid their taint. Alice: I guess that makes you the company's taint. Wally: I wear that label proudly.
CEO: We're borrowing a policy from Google because they are so awesome. You may now use 20% of your workday on your own project ideas. Dilbert: Are you saying we can do 20% less work on our core functions? CEO: No, no. Nothing like that. I'm saying you can work on your own project ideas for 20% of your time. Dilbert: Okay... so... if the 20% doesn't come out of our work hours, where does it come from? Alice: I think he's trying to make us work 20% longer for the same amount of pay. Dilbert; We could just tell people we do it, but not do it. CEO: Same as Google! That's all I'm asking.
Boss: I can't promote you because you didn't have an impact on anything important. Dilbert: How can I have an impact on important things when you put me on unimportant projects? Boss: That sounds like an excuse. Dilbert: What's the difference between an excuse and a great reason? Boss: It depends who says it. Leaders have great reasons when things don't work out, but losers just have excuses. Dilbert: So... you can turn my excuses into great reasons by promoting me? Boss: No, because I can't promote you. Dilbert: That sounds like an excuse.
Boss: Schedule your training during your lunch hours so it doesn't impact your projects. Dilbert: But... my lunch hour is the only freedom I experience in a typical day. The rest of my time is either scheduled to the minute or driven by whatever crisis is happening. Please don't take my lunch hour and reduce me to nothing but a prisoner in a digital chain gang. I'm barely clinging to my illusion of free will as it is. This could push me over the edge. If you take away my one hour of freedom in the day, I might as well be a robot. Boss: Relax. This is temporary. Dilbert: For how long? Boss: Until I can replace you with a robot.
Dilbert: It's called a dashboard. It shows the current status of all our projects. With a tool like this, you never need to ask us for status updates. Wally: How'd the fake dashboard gambit work out? Dilbert: Great! He hasn't talked to me in weeks.
Boss: I noticed that the project dashboard you wrote for me never changes. Dilbert: That's because our projects are always doing great. Boss: It's a static image, isn't it? Dilbert: You're gonna wish you asked that three weeks ago.
Dilbert: I don't know how you are stress-free when we have so much work to do. Wally: It's all about understanding percentages. No matter how hard you work, you will never finish even two percent of what needs to be done. The financial rewards of doing two percent of your work are identical to doing none. It's also a good idea to volunteer for several projects so everyone thinks you're working on the other ones. Your problem is that you're doing actual work for no good reason. Dilbert: My problem is that I'm doing your work plus my work! Wally: It's only two percent more work, you whiner.
Boss: Can you take a call with our Elbonian customers at 6 a.m. tomorrow? Dilbert: Sure. All I need to do is put my health at risk by not getting enough sleep tonight. Of course, I'll hate your guts for making me come to work so early. And I would expect my bad attitude to infect my co-workers and make them less productive, too. My lack of sleep will affect my decision-making, obviously. And I"m working on important projects, so the ripple effect could be catastrophic. So, do you still want me to be here at 6 a.m. tomorrow? Boss: Yes. You don't have to be a sociopath to be a manager, but it helps.
Boss: I'm giving you another software project to work on at the same time as your main project. Dilbert: That will ruin my flow. It will take too long to reset my brain when I switch between projects. Boss: Have you tried working longer hours without extra pay? Dilbert: Yes I have!