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Boss: I can't give you a bonus this year because we paid too much to buy another company. Dilbert: Are you saying my efforts and my rewards are no longer linked? Boss: Noooo. I'm not saying anything like that. I'm just saying your compensation isn't influenced by your performance. Dilbert: That's the same thing! Boss: Teamwork means we all share the rewards and we all have to share the pain. Dilbert: Does that mean management won't be getting bonuses either? Boss: Now you've made it awkward.
boss: wally, your performance is substandard. wally: give me a great performance review, or else i'll design a robot that will take your job. boss: you could do that? wally: i have the skills. i just don't like to use them.
phone conversation dilbert: if you have any problems with the software, just give me a call. client: what if you die or you're in a coma? dilbert: well, in those cases i would not return your call. client: so you're lying about getting back to me. dilbert: no, i'm making a normal kind of generalization, which i assumed you would understand. client: okay, so now you're calling me stupid, and you're a liar? dilbert: if a liar calls you stupid, wouldn't that mean you are smart? client: fair point dilbert: thanks, i'm proud of it.
boss: i heard you asked our v.p. of operations to be your mentor. why didn't you tell me you needed some mentoring? i'm full of useful advice. dilbert: such as? boss: well... not you're putting me on the spot. it's hard to think of advice while you're pressuring me. maybe you could give me a scenario, and then i'll tell you what to do. dilbert: okay, suppose my boss is ruining my productivity by yammering about his great advice. what can i do? boss: that feels like a trick question. dilbert: our v.p. of operations could answer it.
boss: why isn't your project done yet? dilbert: because every time i walk past your office you give me three new tasks and tell men they are my highest priority. boss: i was hoping you didn't know why. dilbert: hire someone dumber next time.
tina: i have something funny to show you. just give me a minute to find it on my phone. dilbert thinking: what's the protocol in this situation? should i just sit here and stare at her pawing at her phone? i can't talk because she's focused on her task. and it would be rude to walk away. would it be an insult to look at my own phone and mentally check out from this useless interaction? tina: ah! i found it! dilbert: okay, good. tina: wait, that's not the right one. dilbert: is this why people fake their own deaths?
boss: can you have it done in a week? dilbert: not if i have to work with other employees. given the galactic incompetence of my co-workers, it would probably take seven to non months. boss: i'll give you two weeks. dilbert: that's how long it will take to set up the first meeting.
boss: why didn't you upgrade the servers like i asked? dilbert: you never asked me to do that. boss: yes, i did. i told you in an email. dilbert: no, you did not. boss: i know i saw it because you replied. dilbert: i replied to a different email. boss: okay, let me find the email and show you how wrong you are. see. it clearly says, "give me a project update by thursday." dilbert: which is...an entirely different topic. boss: why are you fighting me on this?
boss: i can't give you a good performance review because you haven't performed up to expectations. wally: do you even know what my job is? boss: of course i do. you're an engineer. wally: yes, but do you know what projects i'm working on? boss: well, various things, and some miscellaneous things too. wally: how can you determine my job performance when you don't know what my job is? boss: have you heard of heuristics? you're bad at everything i've observed, so i assume you are bad at everything else as well. wally: you should have started with that.
boss: i was going to give this assignment to alice, but i know she would complain about it. dilbert reading paper: i don't want it either. boss: do you plan to complain about it later? dilbert: not to your face. boss: problem solved.