Currently reading The Dilbert Principle by Scott Adams.
Cutting the crap, would say that this is one bible for fun for all the managers out there.
A slap on the face of corporate culture, this book runs us through the lies and truths that we encounter or rather we have already encountered in our time serving a company.
If you think, you are not an asshole with a big mouth and small brain (and even if you are of this category) read this book.
Quoting from chapter 4 : Great Lies of management
“Your input is important to us”
For a manager, the following equation…
Employee Input = More work = Bad
As a … powerless employee … its fun to give a suggestion like this :
“If you care about the health of the employees, you should ask the CEO to fund research on the effects of fluorescent lights on fertility”
…thouroughly impractical but the manager cannot discard it offhand….
Now look how this sentence can be dissected part by part
If you care (FEELING) – about the health ( FEELING about what?) – of the employees (for WHOM?) – you should ask the CEO ( WHICH UPPER LEVEL? ) – to fund research ( DO WHAT?) – on the effects (what EFFECTS) – of flourescent lights ( effects OF what?) – on fertility (effect ON what?)
Ever heard of the PIP kind of programmes in a company (hey if PIP is something one the leading IT firm in India has) and one of the items in the performance appraisal goal sheet sometime back was - how many PIPs have you raised in the last 6 months
So what you can do is to list down possible items for the above dissected parts and create various valuable(?) suggestions for the manager to show.
So we can do some exemplary work here:
care, empathetic, sympathetic, feel, are interested in improving,
FEELING ABOUT WHAT?
health, morale, emotions, food, productivity, proficiency, efficiency, attendance, absence, physical appearance (hot topic eh!!! ), etc etc
employees, staff, non working staff(?), furniture, cubicles, computers (:-)), dogs…
WHICH UPPER LEVEL?
CEO, HR head, Policy Head, Recruit Head, yadda yadda yadda
fund research, set up a committee, hire professionals, create a team to tackle…, brainstorm ( managers love it), hold a meeting, increase or decrease something(?) of something(?), bla bla
EFFECTS OF ____ ON ____? ( this is the funny part)
OF increased level of sugar in the apple juice being served as a part of the free promotional campaign for the newest sponsor for the company ON level of blood pressure
OF unwanted lices on the old chair ON lowered level of sleep
OF ever changing format of goal sheet ON stability of thinking of the employee
OF bad spam detector ON productivity since most of the time goes in deleting the spam mails in outlook
and so on….
A smart combination of these will definitely give you a horde of suggestions that the manager will outright won’t be able to reject on the grounds of incompetent, as they are very much valid when it comes to those buzzwords you shall be using.
Give it a try…