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The Boss says to Alice, "Alice, may I have a word with you?" The Boss continues, "You're not spending enough time in your cubicle." The Boss continues, "It looks as if our department isn't productive." Alice responds, "But.. I can't do my job from my cubicle." The Boss replies, "You have to set priorities. Looking productive is very important to this department." Alice clenches her fists in anger. Alice exclaims, "Will I get a big raise for looking busy while my projects flounder?!" The Boss replies, "You won't get a big raise either way." The Boss continues, "Here's a blank piece of paper to carry back to your cubicle." Alice clenches her fists again and cries, "GAAA!!"
Dilbert, Wally, and Asok are eating lunch. Asok says, "I plan to use my raise to move my home in the handicapped stall to a storage facility." Asok continues, "If you are trying to think of a housewarming gift, I wouldn't say no to a flashlight." Wally says, "If you need help moving, don't hesitate to call Alice." Asok replies, "You are too kind."
The Boss says to Alice, "Alice, your performance this year was superior. I'm giving you a 10 % raise." The Boss continues, "But it's not effective right away." "It kicks in as soon as soon as my budget increase gets approved." Carol asks, "When will that be?" The Boss responds, "As soon as the economy improves and profits go up!" Carol asks, "But my raise will be retroactive to today, right?" The Boss replies, "No." The Boss continues, "You should be happy. Some people aren't getting any raises at all." Carol holds one arm down with the other and thinks, "Must.. control fist... of death." Carol bumps into Wally in the hallway. Wally says, "I just got a 14% future raise just for showing up." Carol holds her arm down again and exclaims, "Gaaa!!!"
The Boss says to Dilbert, "I need you to do Ted's job and your own job until we hire someone." Dilbert responds, "If I do well, you'll make me do two jobs forever. If I do poorly, I'll get no raise." The Boss replies, "I can't promise anything, but there might be some verbal praise down the road."
Headline: Performance Review. The Boss says to Dilbert, "You did two jobs for a year and you did them well." The Boss continues, "I have no budget for raises, so all I can offer is an attaboy." The Boss continues, "The problem is: I don't want to cheapen the whole attaboy system."
An interviewee says to The Boss, "If you hire me, I'll work a hundred hours a week and never ask for a raise!" The interviewee continues, "I went to school at a top-secret facility for super geniuses; that's why it's not on my resume." The Boss says to Catbert, "And I'm sure it's all true because he says he's honest!" Catbert replies, "Apparently it doesn't take one to know one."
Dilbert approaches Carol and asks, "How many business cards should I order?" Carol responds, "It depends." Carol continues, "I use a complex formula based on your burn rate and your likelihood of getting downsized." Dilbert says, "I use about three per week." Carol replies, "You'll need three cards."
Dilbert points to a slide and says, "As requested, I put together a list of functions we should outsource." Dilbert continues, "I limited my list to things we don't do well." The Boss and Wally listen as Dilbert's voice continues, "Marketing, quality control, engineering, finance, human resources, and customer support." Dilbert says, "That leaves us with our core competence..." Dilbert continues, "... Sitting around a brown table." Dilbert says, "And, of course, our ability to speak honestly without fear of retribution." The Boss says, "You will never get another raise as long as I'm alive." Dilbert responds, "Well, that puts a lot of pressure on the brown table strategy."
"I have some disturbing news." "We outsourced our customer-service function to India a few years ago." "So?" "Apparently, they subcontracted the job to Mexico." "Then Mexico subcontracted to Vietnam, who subcontracted to the Philippines.." "..Who subcontracted it to us." "It turns out that we're the lowest-cost provider because we lie about our hold times." "In summary, we pay ourselves to hose ourselves." "Are you thinking what I'm thinking?" "We should raise our prices?"
Dilbert: "I can't give you the salary that you deserve because then there'd be no room for a raise next year." "I wouldn't want you to be all disincentivized, you know, just moping around." Dilbert: "Neck.. muscles.. so.. weak." The Boss: "I think motivation causes that."