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Dilbert: Out online budget approval system isn't working. There's a process for making changes to the system, but I don't know it. I could take a class to learn the process, but there's also a process for approving classes. I could learn the process for approving classes, but I'd still need approval for a budget variance to take the class. And I can't get that because the online budget approval system is broken. I can't even have this conversation because it will make me charge too much of my engineering time to administrative overhead. So I'll go sit in my cubicle and pretend to be thinking about a billable project. It looks like I'll be exaggerating my accomplishments again this year.
Dilbert says, "I have an issue." The Boss says, "Lordy lord." Dilbert says, "No one in the department wants to be left out of the decision making." Dilbert says, "But no one is willing to make a decision." Dilbert says, "As a result, all of my problems are perpetual." Dilbert says, "Can you do something about that?" The Boss says, "I can appear to be concerned. How's this expression?" Dilbert says, "Can you combine that with some impractical advice and unwarranted optimism?" Dilbert says, "I'm frequently thwarted, but rarely disappointed."
Dogbert Consults Dogbert says, "A good leader cultivates internal critics so all sides of an argument are heard." Dogbert says, "For example, I cultivated Dilbert to argue the point I just made." Dilbert says, "Your premise is that a leader is not qualified to make decisions without the help of critics." Dilbert says, "But selecting the appropriate critic is itself a decision." Dilbert says, "There is no reason to assume a leader is any better at selecting a critic than he is at making any other decision." Dilbert says, "Your overpaid consultant is recommending that you add randomness to an already flawed process." Dilbert says, "In summary, this meeting is a waste of time, and your consultant is ripping you off." Dogbert says, "How great was that? You owe me $400 for my time."
The Boss: "Run this by our attorney." Dilbert: "May I vigorously hit myself with a hammer instead?" The Boss: "You have my attention." Dilbert: "Either way, it's a painful process that won't change the final result." "But the hammer is quicker and it will still make you feel as if you made me do something." The Boss: "Okay. Try the hammer thing." BAM! "Ouch!" BAM! "Ouch!" BAM! "Ouch!" "Now run it by our attorney so it feels as if I did two things."
The Boss: Mister Dogbert has agreed to consult for $400 per hour. "I know it's expensive but you get what you pay for." "Let's get the ball rolling." "My first question is: what process will you be using to arrive at your recommendations?" Dogbert: "a..." "very...slow one..."
"My job could not be more meaningless." "I'm looking at my new Director of Post-Decision Support!" "After I make a decision, your job is to figure out why it was the right one." "Save those tears of joy for later. We've got work to do!" "SOB!" "I decided to outsource our nuclear contracts to North Elbonia." "And in return, they'll give us food, if they ever figure out how to grow any." "I expect some fallout from this decision." "Me too." "On the plus side, it won't be long before there's a government reward for killing him."
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."
Asok, The Boss, and Dilbert are sitting next to each other at a meeting. Asok raises his hand excitedly and says, "Ooh! Ooh! I know how to solve that problem!" The Boss replies, "Not so fast, Asok." Asok looks sullen as the Boss continues, "This isn't the solution meeting. This is the process meeting." The Boss continues, "Our goal is to develop a process for generating ideas to solve the problem." Wally turns to Asok and The Boss and says, "We don't know how to develop processes. Someone should have a meeting about that." Wally continues, "Someone like... a cross-disciplinary SWAT team in an offsite lockup meeting." The Boss says, "Hmm.. good idea." He then looks at Dilbert from the corner of his eye and finishes, "I guess this meeting is over." Wally continues to talk to Asok as they're walking out of the meeting. He says, "You see, Asok. You can only thwart a meeting by inventing other meetings to act as a firewall." The Boss approaches Asok at his desk and says, "Asok, I'm putting you on a cross-disciplinary SWAT team."
Alice is sitting at her desk. The Boss approaches from behind and says, "Alice, meet our new sales manager." Alice stands up. The Pigboy enters and stands next to The Boss. The Boss says, "He's a Pigboy who makes inappropriate comments every five minutes." The Boss turns to the Pigboy and says, "Somehow he slipped through our rigorous employment screening process." The Boss looks at his watch and says, "Whoa! His five minutes are up." The Pigboy starts, "So Alice..." Blocking the rest of the Pigboy's comment is "Inappropriate Comment Deleted." The Boss is chuckling. Alice says, "That was very clever. Now let me try one." Alice's pushes The Boss out of the way and screams profanity at the Pigboy. Her comment is also blocked by, "Inappropriate Comment Deleted." The Pigboy's head has exploded. Visibly frazzled, The Boss turns to Alice and asks, "How did you learn to swear like that?" Alice responds, "I used to date a one-eyed carpenter."
The Boss says to his staff, "This is Rasputin, our new consultant." The Boss continues, "He stopped my paper cut from bleeding." The Boss says to everyone, "He has charisma." Alice says, "I'd like to see a demonstration on Asok." Rasputin looks at Asok fiercely. Asok nervously says, "Ack...can't breathe..." The Boss says to everyone, "That's called the evil eye process. Now do Wally." Rasputin begins to stare at Wally. Wally replies, "Ack...can't breathe..." Wally drops to the floor and the Boss says, "He never had a chance." Dilbert replies, "Your anti-charisma is strong today."