From Vendors Comic Strips
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Dilbert enters a cave. A door above the sign says "Bureaucracy." Dilbert tells a troll sitting at a desk, "I need to buy an upgrade for my computer." The troll growls. The troll replies, "First, you must write a business case and get five signatures." Another troll jumps onto Dilbert's back. The troll sitting at the desk continues, "Get bids from nine vendors." Another troll approaches Dilbert. The troll continues, "All vendors must be approved by a vote of the vendor approval committee." The troll lists, ". . . Purchase order . . . Budget transfer . . . Legal review . . . Accounting classification . . . Inventory . . ." Several trolls cling to Dilbert's body. The troll explains, "These steps are necessary to prevent employees from doing something uneconomical." Dilbert arrives at home with several trolls clinging to his body. Dogbert asks, ". . . So you suggested a process 'quality audit'?" Dilbert replies, "Yeah, that's the one clinging to my buttocks."
The Boss and Dogbert sit at a conference table. Dogbert says, "It's inexplicable, but the low-cost system I sold you seems to be woefully under-powered." Dogbert continues, "You could replace it with another vendor's system, thus showing everybody you make a mistake. Or you can pay my outrageous upgrade fees." The Boss asks, "How big a fool do you think I am?" Dogbert replies, "I won't know until I see if you go for the lease option."
The boss hands Alice a piece of paper. The boss says, "Alice make a few changes to this contract." Alice says, "Changes? This contract was signed months ago." The boss says, "It doesn't hurt to ask." Alice says, "You want me to ask for a sixty percent discount?" The boss says, "No one said it would be easy." Alice says, "You're asking me to be a clueless jerk in front of our primary vendor." Alice says, "Please don't ask me to do this." The boss says, "And ask if they'll change the part about "acts of God" to include poltergeists." The boss walks away and thinks, "That's why our vendors never try to steal our best employees."
Dilbert says to the Boss, "I need to take a class to learn the new technology." The Boss replies, "Our vendor's sales person will teach you everything he knows." The sales person begins explaining to Dilbert, who sits taking notes. "You only need 'three moist towelettes' to give yourself a sponge bath."
The Boss says to Dilbert, "I cut your budget in half." Dilbert replies, "How can I do a technology installation without an adequate budget?!" The Boss says, "Try being unethical with our vendors." Dilbert answers, "What?" The Boss replies, "It's easy." The Boss continues, "Tell them we might make a huge purchase. Later..." The Boss goes on to say, "...If they give us a bunch of free stuff now." The Boss says to Dilbert, "If it makes you feel better, wait until they lie first." The vendor representative says to Dilbert, "And there are no hidden costs." Dilbert says to the representative, "Um...we might make a huge purchase later."
Carol sits behind her desk. Wally approaches with a cup of coffee and says, "Do you feel guilty about taking bribes from vendors?" Carol replies, "No. Do you feel guilty getting paid to walk around with a coffee cup?" Wally walks away thinking, "I need a bigger cup so this looks harder."
Man: I have a PHD, so obviously you should do what I say. Instead of negotiating with vendors, lets just tell them how much money we have and ask them yo do the right thing. You're probably feeling embarrassed for not thinking of the idea yourself. Alice: Must...not...shave...PHD.
The Boss: Everyone gets a company shirt! Its good for morale. The Boss: opps! Not for temps. None for contractors. Not for vendors. Nothing in your size. Not for people who might get down sized on Friday. I'lluse the leftovers as garage rags. CatBert: Did the shorts improve morale? The Boss: Sure did! I feel great!
Dilbert: Our vendors rep says they can't deliver the parts for three months. The Boss: that just means he promised the parts to some other customer who did a better job of threatening him. Dilbert: How about if I say we'll never buy from you gain? vendor: Id say you're not exactly buying form us now.
I'll ask the vendor for ballpark prices to see if the idea is feasible. "You can't talk with vendors until our change control board approves the project." "But that would require a cost-benefit analysis." "And I can't do that without ballpark prices from the vendor." "Just take your best guess." "So...I should make up a number so I can get approval to make a phone call and ask what the number should have been?" "Right. But first you need to get my approval to do the cost-benefit analysis." "Will you approve it?" "I'd have to see the numbers."