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Tags #project time line, #work portion, #meet with people, #competitive bids, #predictable behavior, #randomly reorganize, #department, #cut funding, #final phase, #death, #bitter and broken, #leaving building, #medical
Dilbert and the Boss sit at a conference table. Dilbert works on a laptop connected to an overhead projector. Dilbert says, "Here's my project time line." Dilbert points to a diagram and says, "The 'work' portion will take one week." Dilbert continues, "I'll spend three weeks meeting with people whom you send to me because you don't feel like talking to them yourself." Dilbert continues, "I'll spend eight weeks getting competitive bids from companies that I know I won't select." Dilbert continues, ". . . Six weeks to get the wisdom and approval of executives who are too busy to understand the issues." Dilbert says, "During that time you will randomly reorganize the department and cut my funding." Dilbert points to a picture of a man jumping out of a building window. Dilbert continues, "In the final phase I leap to my death, a bitter and broken shell of a man." The Boss asks, "Is there some sort of manager thing I should be doing now?" Dilbert replies, "If I time my leap right you'll just be leaving the building."
Dilbert points to a diagram on an overhead projector. Dilbert says to the Boss, "You saved one million dollars by having programmers in Elbonia write software for us." Dilbert continues, "But we wasted four million dollars trying to debug the software." Dilbert continues, "And the entire staff of our quality assurance group quit to become mimes." The Boss responds, "Let's blame the mimes; they won't talk."
Dilbert says to Wally, "If this company won't use our product idea let's quit and start our own business!" Wally responds, "Why quit? We can run our new company from our cubicles and get paid too." Dilbert asks, "Wouldn't that be immoral?" Wally says, "That's only an issue for people who aren't already in hell."
Dilbert says to Asok, "As an intern, your assignments won't be as glamorous as mine, but you'll gain experience." The Boss peers into Dilbert's cubicle and says, "Dilbert, I need a status report on the mouse pad inventory." Dilbert says to Asok, "See? My assignment has the word 'status' built right in." Asok looks worried and thinks, "Danger! Alert!"
The Boss says to Dilbert, "Go home, Dilbert. Relax! You're working too hard!" Dilbert sits at his desk and says, "You told me to finish this by tomorrow. You said it's urgent." The Boss waves his arms and says, "Relax! Go home! Shoo!" The caption says, "Suddenly Dilbert is sucked into the 'Boss Zone' where time and logic do not apply." Dilbert's head disappears into a hole in time. Dilbert floats by the Boss's head and asks, "How can I relax AND do urgent work at the same time?" The Boss replies, "Work smarter, not harder." Dilbert grabs his head and screams. The caption says, "Mercifully, the angel of cynicism appears." Dogbert flies up to Dilbert and says, "Slap something together in the morning. He won't look at it anyway." The caption says, "The inspirational moral . . ." Dilbert puts his coat on and leaves the office. He sings, "Freedom's just another word for not caring about the quality of your work!"
An employee from marketing, Dilbert and Wally sit at a conference table. The woman says, "And that's the marketing plan. Any comments?" Dilbert says, "It appears to be a bunch of obvious generalities and wishful thinking with no apparent business value." The woman thinks, "Marketing didn't turn out to be the glamour career I expected." Wally shows his copy of the plan to Dilbert and says, "I circled all the words you won't find in any dictionary."
The Boss tells Dilbert, "I need to move you one cubicle down." Dilbert asks, "Why?" The Boss replies, "That way my people will still be in a square pattern." The Boss explains, "You're in a random pattern now. The symmetry is bad." Dilbert says, "You want me to waste two days of work to move . . ." Dilbert continues, "I'll have no phone and no network connection for a week . . ." Dilbert continues, "I'll have to order new business cards and update my cubicle address on dozens of records." Dilbert continues, "And you still won't have a SQUARE because there are FIVE of us." A man stands in the door of Dilbert's cubicle holding a box. He tells Dilbert, "I got downsized. Apparently somebody complained that I formed a pentagon." Dilbert replies, "That can happen."
The caption says, "Catbert, the evil Director of Human Resources." Catbert, Wally, Dilbert and Alice sit at a conference table. Catbert says, "We're moving to 'cafeteria style' benefits." Catbert continues, "Under this system, if you need health care, you wander through the cafeteria asking 'Does anybody know what this red lump is?'" Alice asks, "What if it's a life-threatening problem?" Catbert replies, "That reminds me, the cafeteria won't be labeling the entrees anymore."
Dilbert tells Asok, "I won't always be around to be your mentor, Asok." Dilbert hands Asok a diskette and says, "So I've captured all of my career wisdom in this software, which I call the 'Automentor.'" Dilbert sits at his computer and asks, "Automentor, how can I achieve job satisfaction?" The computer replies, "Try giving yourself a massage in your cubicle." Asok asks, "Automentor, how can I make sure my accomplishments get noticed?" A picture of Dilbert is on the screen. The software replies, "That's not a problem at this company; nobody accomplishes anything." Asok asks, "Should I look for a new job?" The software replies, "Too late. They don't call this place the 'resume stain' for nothing." Asok stands behind Dilbert and asks, "How do you handle all the hopelessness?" Dilbert hums and replies, "I give it to the new guy."
The caption says, "The Budget Trap." The Boss says, "I need a quick estimate for how much your next project will cost, Wally." Wally replies, "How should I know? You haven't even told me what my next project is." The Boss says, "That's okay. I only need a rough estimate for planning purposes." Wally says, "I see where this is going. You're going to turn my wild guess into a budget. Later I'll be blamed when it's wrong." The Boss replies, "No, no. I won't hold you to these numbers." Wally says, "Well . . . Okay, let's say two million dollars." The Boss says as he walks away, "Ooh . . . Can't afford that. I'll put you down for twenty thousand dollars." The caption says, "One year later . . ." The Boss sits at his desk and says to Wally, "You're way over budget. Can you show me the cause?" Wally replies, "It depends. Can mirrors reflect your image?"