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Boss: Dilbert, I want you to plan the team-building celebration. Make sure there is no alcohol, no dancing, no touching, no flirting, and no joking around. Dilbert: Can we eat? Boss: Only food that has never been near a peanut.
wally: i decided to try my hand at writing fiction. i like writing fiction because it doesn't require any research. i can literally make up a story out of nothing. i feel sorry for nonfiction writers. they have to get the facts right. but a fiction writer only has to use imagination. i can make any wild assumptions about the future that i want. boss: i asked you here to talk about your budget forecast. wally: that's what i was talking about.
Wally: According to the science of memory, you are likely to forget ninety percent of what I present today. So I got rid of ninety percent of my slides to focus on the one slide that matters. Voice: Or were you too lazy to make more than one slide? Wally: I already forgot ninety percent of what you just said.
the new consultant: i'll need the support of every department to make this project a success. boss: i won't get any credit if your project succeeds, and you'll be gone in a month. consultant: can i count on you to not sabotage the project? boss: you're coming off as needy.
the boss: we'll need a scapegoat to blame for our failure on this project. dilbert: no one will believe it wasn't our fault. the boss: are you kidding? the boss: people will believe anything. the boss: we just have to be the first to frame the situation. dilbert: i suppose we could make our lie sound credible. the boss: that's overkill. dilbert: we don't need to sound credible? the boss: not even a little. the boss is in ceo's office. the boss: our project failed because of climate change. ceo: that sounds right.
dilbert, the boss and wally at conference room table. the boss: the company is announcing generous buyout packages for employees who elect to leave. dilbert: won't all the smart people leave first because they can easily get new jobs at higher pay? the boss: ummm... dilbert: if you don't get enough volunteers, will you start firing people? the boss: we have no plan to do that. dilbert: will you make a plan if too few people leave? the boss: oh, yes. dilbert: would it be fair to say the people who stay will envy the dead? the boss: um... one week later: the boss: how many took the offer? carol: it's just you now.
the boss: make a slide deck that says our "centers of excellence" are creating more excellence. dilbert: do we have any data to support that claim? the boss: no. dilbert: you want me to lie? the boss: is that suddenly too much to ask.
the boss: did you read my suggestions on the user interface? dilbert: yes, but we'll need a bigger budget if you want to make the user interface so easy that even you can use it. the boss: just make it so the average idiot can use it. dilbert: we did, but we didn't anticipate any below-average idiots.
purchasing manager: i can't approve this purchase without three vendor quotes. dilbert: only two companies in the world make this sort of product. purchasing manager: if i bend the rules for you, everyone will want me to bend the rules. dilbert: maybe you could only bend the rules when it makes complete sense to do so. purchasing manager: that would be chaos. Purchasing manager: everyone thinks they have a good reason to bend the rules. dilbert: is the real problem here that you were bullied in school, and you use this job for some sort of sick revenge. purchasing manager: now you need four vendor quotes.
alice to the boss: one option is to use the old method that has never once worked, but we think we know how to make it work next time. alice: the other option is to try something new that we can't be sure will work. alice: it's almost as if leadership is nothing but guessing. the boss drinking coffee: let's change the subject.