Favorite Quotes from the Corporate Curmudgeon
ON RETAIL CLERKS:
You could see it
in the way she carried herself: she was the kind of employee always looking for
nothing to do.
ON THE LIFE OF AN
Remember your math teacher saying, "Name any number and I
can name one bigger"? Some schlump would fall for it and say, "A zillion" and
the teacher would respond smugly, "A zillion and one." It's like that with jobs
-- name a terrible job and I can name one worse. You say, "A guy who cleans up
after autopsies in the morning and empties septic tanks in the afternoon." I
say, "His assistant."
ON WARNING LABELS:
It is, of
course, impossible to warn boneheaded consumers of every conceivable blunder.
As the saying goes, "Genius has its limits, but there's no end to stupidity."
Even when reasonable people exercise all due caution, life is full of dangers.
If God could be sued, we'd have no mountains.
The company calls
it "downsizing" or "rightsizing." My own informal "Name the Layoff" contest
produced some other euphemisms: Retroactive Hiring Freeze, Resume Revision
Days, Amway Opportunity Time, and Corporation Lite.
You take a dozen
lively, intelligent people, put them in a conference room, then leap out of the
way of falling IQ's. Successful managers hide their "meeting senility" and
appear interested even while napping. What begins as a Meeting of the Minds
soon becomes a Meeting of the Thoughtful Expressions.
ON MASS MAILING RESUMES:
lick career problems by licking stamps.
ON LISTENING TO AN ANTHONY ROBBINS MOTIVATION
OK, it isn't Nietsche, but look what happened to Nietsche's
career -- he never even got his own infomercial.
presenters have adopted the K.I.S.S principle -- Keep It Simple Stupid. This is
the K.I.S.S. of D.E.A.T.H. for audience concentration, however. The speaker,
sensing inattention, simplifies still more. This downward spiral ends in the
Lucidity Paradox: the speaker's points eventually become so clear they
Why are CEO's who
slash jobs so proud of themselves? Instead of bragging about "cutting fat,"
they ought to be getting up before their employees and saying, "We did such a
lousy job of planning and hiring that we have more people than work. And we are
so broke and so dim-witted that we can't come up with any way to get more work.
So our only solution is to send a lot of good people home. I am ashamed and I
ON BUSINESS ATTIRE:
your job to carry heavy objects around, your company did not hire you for your
body. Your company would rather you did not have a body -- something else to go
wrong. The purpose of all business dressing is to turn your legs and torso into
an attractively upholstered vehicle for transporting your head.
ON WINDBAG PUBLIC SPEAKERS:
Speaker, O Speaker,
Enough self-delusion --
What the crowd yearns to
Are the words, "In conclusion...."
ON MANAGEMENT BY ASKING
Employees suppose that their bosses exist in order to
answer their questions, but, of course, the inverse is true. In fact, I once
knew a manager who successfully supervised a staff using just these three
- Where do we stand?
- Is that the best you can do?
- Is there any reason why I shouldn't fire you this
ON SECRETARIES DAY:
Where is a
Grinch when you need one?
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