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CEO: I read an article that says leaders should acknowledge the achievements of their underlings. Have you done anything lately that warrants some praise? Boss: Well... I'm under budget because I forgot to staff one of our projects. CEO: Okay, I can work with that. Now I think I'm supposed to pat you on the head or something. Let's try that and see how we feel. Stop leaning in. Boss: Feels... so... good.
Dilbert: Okay, you talked me into buying the deluxe edition. Salesman: We don't have that one in stock, but I could call around to our other stores. Dilbert: Technically, that means this is not actually a store. You're more like online shopping, but with a terrible user interface. Watch me buy that same item with my phone while you stand there being obsolete. And... done. Salesman: Did they try to sell you an unnecessary warranty extension? Dilbert: No. Salesman: Yes! I still have a purpose! Dilbert: Here's my digital receipt.
Boss; Don't make any product changes without change orders. When users ask for new features, direct them to the online change order system. Dilbert: That system only has the old forms. Boss: Tell someone to put the new ones on there. Wally: That would require a change order. Dilbert: Maybe we could tell users our sense of hope was killed by something called management. The we could sort of slump over like we're waiting for death's cold embrace. Boss: I'll get back to you if I think of a better plan.
Boss: I don't need to see your resume. That's the old way of hiring. Now we use data from the Internet to see what you've been up to lately. Ew. Applicant: I'll show myself out. Boss: You'll understand if I don't shake your hand.
Boss: How'd your call go? Dilbert: Better than I expected. We spent the first 45 minutes trying to get our online collaboration tools to work. Then we couldn't agree on what we were trying to accomplish. I couldn't understand most of the attendees because they were on speakerphones in rooms with bad acoustics. I randomly agreed to a few things, but I don't know what. Boss: I thought you said it went better than you expected. Dilbert: It did. I go into every human encounter expecting to be framed for a crime I didn't commit. Boss: I really need to find a problem I can fix.
Boss: You failed the online ethics course for the third time. You can't be an engineer for this company if you have no grasp of business ethics. You leave me no choice. I'm putting you on the management fast track. Wally: Huh.
Catbert: You're the first employee in company history to fail the online ethics course. Wally: I protest the grading system! Ethics are subjective. There are no right answers! Catbert: You said you would kill a coworker if you knew you wouldn't get caught. Wally: It was hard to know what answer they were looking for.
Boss: I'm reading a great management book about the rules of leadership. Dilbert: Allow me to put that in context. There are probably 10,000 books about leadership, and each one has a different approach. And there are millions of real leaders, of which no two are alike. Moreover, every situation is unique and requires a different type of leader. And yet this one author has found a magic formula to transform you from a gullible baboon into a great leader. And that makes sense because all great leaders throughout history achieved success by reading a random book. Boss: I don't like context. Dilbert: It isn't popular.
Boss: A goo manager leads by example. How does it help an engineer to see an example of how to be a middle manager? Dilbert: That's like teaching physics by showing examples of monster truck rallies. Alice: Should we say dumb things, too, or have you not started leading by example yet? Wally: Now what is he doing/ Are we supposed to do that? Dilbert: I think he's leading by example now! Boss: I'm starting to wonder if everything I read on the Internet is wrong.
Dilbert: As you requested, I researched all of the best-selling books on the topic of leadership. Apparently, leadership is the product of sociopathic tendencies plus luck. All other personality traits are inactive ingredients. Wally: Did you actually read all of those books? Dilbert: I only needed to know they were all different.