I’m gonna kick your ass!
With those fateful words another game night in the Abyss had begun! 🙂
Luck was on my side. I drew the lowest letter and thus earned the privilege of acting first. That means a double-word score on turn one, baby! Oh yeah!
I eagerly grabbed my seven tiles and began to arrange them on my tile holder. Uh, what the hell?!?!?!?
D D D J N T Z
Every once in a while I forget the “universe” is out there watching my movements. Here was a little sign sent to remind me of my place. I tipped my hat in silent tribute to the universe. “Well played,” I said silently to myself. “Well played indeed.”
Whoever comes up with the best scoring play from these tiles will win a cheese wheel made by the native peoples of Abyssia. Your play must be a legal word found in the Scrabble Player’s Dictionary. Good luck!
Chapter 27 – A Surprising Day
As we’ve previously discussed, when you want to destroy your employees, the element of surprise is one of your most powerful allies. The motto of “keep it secret, keep it safe” rings very true. Ideally you want your employees completely in the dark regarding everything you have planned.
Sometimes, however, there will be times you wish to employ the element of misdirection. If used correctly misdirection can be a real game changer. If the move is too abrupt, however, it can backfire. This is an advanced move and caution is advised.
This week, for example, my boss attempted this unusual ploy. As the new week got off to a start, he communicated with all of his employees that would be out of the office on Thursday. This immediately triggered spidey-sense amongst the employees. We all knew something was up. The change in his behavior was just a bit too dramatic. He always keeps his coming and goings from the office a closely guarded secret because he loves to keep us off balance and guessing.
He even held a staff meeting on Wednesday to remind the whole team, again, that he would not be in the building on Thursday.
You can guess what happened next. Thursday morning rolled around and he surreptitiously tried to drive into the parking lot. It’s only a few feet from the front office windows and I immediately recognized the distinctive sound of his big ass pickup followed by the tell-tale squawk of his alarm being activated. A few seconds later the front door was flung open and he popped in like a vaudeville comedian and yelled, “Surprise!” I shit you not.
There was a collective rolling of the eyes amongst all staff. The boss had overplayed his hand and his move fell short. It almost was enough to put me in a good mood. He still visited each workstation, though, and made requisite shithead comments liked, “That looks like actual work. I must have surprised you. You are pretty good on that boss key.”
I glanced out the window and noticed his second move. It was a variation of the classic Status Reinforcement tactic described in Chapter 5 – Make Sure Employees Know Their Place. All employees have been told they are not to park their vehicles in customer spaces. A glance out the front window confirmed that the Boss had parked his big ass pickup sideways at the front door, completely blocking three customer spaces. He has developed quite the penchant for this maneuver lately.
Going for the boss douchebage-trifecta, he then busted out the You’re-Not-Included move. This technique requires two employees within normal hearing range of each other. He approached my neighbor’s desk and started an inane conversation in slightly louder than normal voice. “Say, how’s the XYZ project coming along? Still late on that?”
Here was a prime example that he was following one of the golden rules of employee destruction – combine techniques whenever possible. Always be multitasking to maximize yield. The direct put down was for her, the overly loud voice was intended for me. Clever.
“Got any questions for me while I’m here?” Yeah, yeah, yeah. We know we’re all just utterly helpless without your God-like powers around here.
Then it happened. I couldn’t see the conversation from my office, they were not in my line of sight, but the shift in the tone of the conversation was palpable. Suddenly he was whispering. I could just imagine him bending down to talk directly in her ear. Lick lick, nibble nibble. Mmmm, boss juices.
“Whisper whisper whisper,” he said.
And so it went. A few words loud, then a few more whispers. And repeat. As we all know, Rule #52 of the Douchebag Boss Manual clearly states, “Bosses never need to be subtle. Unless, of course, doing so causes even more destruction.”
I wasn’t listening in to their conversation since I could give a flying rip shit about anything they had to say, but even when not listening the shift in tone was as obvious as a punch to the face. The impact and intent was clear: What is being said is not meant for your ears. Ah yes. Divide and conquer and toy with one employee’s ego while you make another feel excluded – all at the same time!
He had done it! He nailed the trifecta of employee destruction and in record time. The sheer effort from the exertion obviously wore him down and he was about to pack it in. He had neglected to pace himself and he was clearly spent. A few more minutes of standard garden-variety employee put downs and harassment and then he was on his way.
I hope this chapter has helped illustrate that destroying your employees takes skill, planning and finesse. Yes, the complete destruction of your employees is the ultimate goal, but remember to enjoy yourself along the way. Destroying your employees is not just about the end result, it’s about savoring each and every part of the process. Enjoy the journey.
Next chapter: Fucking with employees when they are off-duty.
Some dipshit from BP testified before Congress today. Or something. Whatever.
So I log in to my iGoogle home page tonight.
I normally eschew the iGoogle thing. It’s a bit lame. But I got this new widget thingie with a hamster that runs in a wheel, and, well, frankly, it makes it worth the trip.
Anyway. I get on iGoogle and the following two headlines blast me right in the face:
Fox News: BP CEO’s Day in Congress’ Kangaroo Court
New York Times: BP Chief Offers Few Answers, Frustrating Lawmakers
Oh, God. What a treat. Seriously, I just adore Dove moisturizing liquid, relaxing baths in Calgon, boxes of fine chocolates, sweet Zinfendel wine, and, of course, good belly laughs. Voila! My after work pick-me-up of the day.
Neither link went to a page that was clearly labeled as “opinion.” Remember in the newspaper they actually denoted which pieces were news and which were editorials? “Opinion” had its own page. On the web these days those lines seem to be blurred. To be fair, however, the Fox News piece was served up under the heading “Common Sense.” Riiiiiiiight.