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The Dilbert Principle: A Cubicle's-Eye View of Bosses, Meetings, Management Fads & Other Workplace Afflictions
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The Dilbert Principle: A Cubicle's-Eye View of Bosses, Meetings, Management Fads & Other Workplace Afflictions

(Dilbert: Business #1)

3.89  ·  Rating details ·  9,254 ratings  ·  370 reviews
The creator of Dilbert, the fastest-growing comic strip in the nation (syndicated in nearly 1000 newspapers), takes a look at corporate America in all its glorious lunacy. Lavishly illustrated with Dilbert strips, these hilarious essays on incompetent bosses, management fads, bewildering technological changes and so much more, will make anyone who has ever worked in an off ...more
Paperback, 336 pages
Published April 24th 1997 by Harper Business (first published April 18th 1996)
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Start your review of The Dilbert Principle: A Cubicle's-Eye View of Bosses, Meetings, Management Fads & Other Workplace Afflictions
There are two kinds of people in the world, those who believe that the world of business is rational and those who have experience of it.

Or as Scott Adams puts it in the first chapter of this loose collection of comic strips and emails from people about their jobs "No matter how absurd I try to make the comic strip I can't stay ahead of what people are experiencing in their own workplaces."

The downside of this book is that the emails would be funnier if they weren't true.

There's an article disc
Riku Sayuj
Feb 22, 2012 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Puneet Raheja
Shelves: r-r-rs, mba-stuff

The Dilbert Principle: A Q & A

This is not really a review. It is more of a collection of notes I made from the book while I got some respite from laughing my head off or scratching my head at the thought that some of this sarcasm is slung at me too.

To those of you who are unfortunate enough to be 'bosses', I would suggest that you give this book a miss: You might end up in chronic depression.

To get into the nuances of the book, here is a Q&A with my notes from the book and a few Dilbert illu
Nandakishore Varma
Nov 13, 2011 rated it really liked it
I have worked in Engineering Consultancy organisations since 1993. Now I will let Dilbert speak for me.

And finally, with apologies to the memory of Dian Fossey.

Apr 13, 2017 rated it really liked it
I never appreciated Dilbert until I actually got a "cubicle" job... ...more
☘Misericordia☘ ⚡ϟ⚡⛈⚡☁ ❇️❤❣
Horribly too true! The folly of offices! Can't finish it, though! ...more
Preston Kutney
Apr 21, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: business
Clever satire of corporate office culture. I think we are in the decline of the "Office Space" era, and I don't really harbor any resentment towards my own corporation (though I do sit in a drab cubicle) but this remains a must-read for any disaffected employee of a large company. I had more than a few hearty laughs here. ...more
Nicholas Nash
Dec 28, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I read this book when I first started working. I've been cynical since and try to see through all the workplace madness right away. This book is incredibly funny and, I must say, every bit true. If you're slogging away in a cubicle, don't feel bad. This book will make you feel better. Know that you are not alone! ...more
Jul 06, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
If you've worked for a company, for any period of time, chances are you'll be able to identify a lot of these funny situations and people. Because we have all worked for a crazy boss one, we've all been in a cubicle at least once, and we've all seen Quality Teams at least once in companies. I know I have, and boy, are they the same as in Dilbert.
I mean, thank goodness, I've never had everything happening all at once. Is either just one or two that stand out more than others. Still, when you got
Doc Opp
May 18, 2008 rated it really liked it
From about 2002-2007, I believe the Daily Show gave the most hard hitting and reliable news on TV. The reason was because the mainstream media was afraid to go against the zeitgeist of the patriotic anti-terror hawkish government policies. The Daily Show, being a humor show, could say whatever the heck it felt like safe behind the armor of freedom of expression and comedy. So, John Stewart poked holes in ridiculous policy, and was one of the few places with reasonable analysis of global affairs. ...more
Aug 11, 2007 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: jaded tech and/or office workers
Shelves: humor, own
I got into the Dilbert comics sometime during high school. I was working part-time in the head office of a construction company, alphabetizing invoices and de-stapling paperwork. Gimpy stuff. "Office bitch" type stuff. The hours and pay were good though and my boss looked almost exactly like the Dilbert Boss -- but with a mustache and without being an idiot. Just the same, everyday's three panel strip clearly illustrated some incident that had recently occurred.

This book was given to me somewher
May 28, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: comics, humor
Writing comedic prose is tough. Even professional comedians fail at it most of the time. And I would imagine that writing comic strips is even tougher, based on the fact that DILBERT, THE FAR SIDE and CALVIN AND HOBBES are the only good ones that immediately spring to mind. In THE DILBERT PRINCIPLE, Scott Adams succeeds admirably at both. Yes, the DILBERT comic strips are funnier than his prose--but not by so great a margin as you'd naturally expect. Adams obviously put a lot of thought into thi ...more
Sep 26, 2016 rated it liked it
Dilbert was a favorite of my late husband, and I read this book in small portions over the course of a year. It brought me back to my days in the work force, for example United Way campaigns, downsizing and leaders that compare employees making mistakes with doctors dropping babies on their heads (employees at the insurance company I worked for actually got a memo from upper management on that!).

The book includes both cartoons, text and real-life anecdotes that readers sent Scott Adams. Adams i
Feb 12, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone who's been an employee and has a sense of humor.
This is the second time I've read this book. The first time, I went through it very fast. This time I savored its wisdom.

Anyone who has ever worked in a corporation will relate to both the essays and the unforgettable cartoons. I particularly enjoy Dogbert, the heartless H.R. manager. Having worked in H.R. for a number of years, I have stories similar to Adams' comic strips.

The hypocrisy of a great percentage of managers is illuminated in the chapter on "Great Lies of Management". I'm sure most
Jan 14, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: funny, read-in-2015
"When companies try to encourage creativity it's like a bear dancing with an ant. Sooner or later the ant will realize it's a bad idea, although the bear may not."

As usual, Scott Adams is spot on about business life. It's bizarre that this book is almost 20 years old and the same old management fads, catch phrases and general b.s. are still in play today. It's amazing that any businesses manage to be successful.
Sandra Kinzer
Nov 24, 2019 rated it liked it
I used to think this comic was incredibly boring.... but now that I have an office job too, I see the appeal.

"Companies use a lot of energy trying to increase employee satisfaction. That's very nice of them, but let's face it - work sucks. If people liked work they'd do it for free. The reason we have to pay people to work is that work is inherently unpleasant compared to the alternatives."
Jorge Rosas
Fun and with a lot of sarcasm regarding the office life, managers and engineering, it is a real representation on what many managers and decision makers do instead of what they’re supposed to be doing, the self interest drives them to take annoying and catastrophic decisions. Also, it has good collection of comics that makes it even more enjoyable.
Tom Schulte
Mar 19, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I pulled this off the shelf thinking it was merely a compendium of Dilbert cartoons. It is a much more involved exegesis of the The Dilbert Principle in action and the apathy and rage when "companies tend to systematically promote their least competent employees to management (generally middle management), to limit the amount of damage they are capable of doing." Bolstered by anonymized emails from the field, it is at times as saddening and painful as it is funny. This stuff is all too true. Unf ...more
May 27, 2019 rated it really liked it
Whenever I read the comics I make sure that I read Dilbert. It is the funniest and most observant comic strip published today. Dilbert's creator and author of this book is clearly a smart guy. His many years in the business sector has lent him a particular acumen for pointing out ridiculous things that happen in office settings. He continues that trend of witty humor in "The Dilbert Principle". I enjoyed reading this book. It's thesis is that "We are all idiots" which is true. At one point or an ...more
Robert Christopher
Mar 19, 2018 rated it liked it
I listened to the book. The last chapter was good. The rest, not so much.
Peter Timson
Aug 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Brilliant and still so apt. A must read even if it is just to broaden one's education/view on life. A business classic really, even taken up by the BBC's "In Business" programme. ...more
Omar El-mohri
Feb 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2019, audio-copy
Really funny approach to explaining how office work, things that usually ignore or don’t notice
Dec 29, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Loved the emails that Scott Adams gets. No matter where you work there's a bit of crazy. ...more
Ioana Ioana
1996 - A reminder to keep function above appearance

A critique of the workforce while making total abstraction of the immense pool of employee stupidity? What have the romans ever done for us?

Extra star for keeping it real on ISO worthlessness (standardization -process described for better or worse in those extra long guidelines that no one reads- IS essential and traces back to ancient times when folks had to be on the same page when the need to weigh goods arose and who knows what other quarrel
بسام عبد العزيز
Jul 30, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Pretty hilarious! i couldn't erase the smile on my face during reading such a hilarious book.. even sometimes i burst into laughter and people around me was wandering whether i'm crazy or something!

the book contains the management deficiencies that scott has experienced himself during his career as an employee in big companies.
even though it may seem exaggerated sometimes for some people but for people working in the engineering field it'll definitely be their "day-to-day" routine! so if you'r
Feb 12, 2017 rated it really liked it
Funny exaggeration of the corporate life. I liked the chapter about Marketing. One thing is clear, the author really hates cubicles.
Mary JL
Dec 25, 2009 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Anyone who works or will work in a large company
Shelves: non-fiction
I really enjoyed this book. It is non-fiction, although Scott Adams uses some of his comic strips to make a point.

He points out all the pointless, timewasting bureaucratic hassles that affects most large businesses--and many small ones.

For those who have ever worked in any office, the problems Adams focusses on are all too familiar.

Ever had a big company "slogan"? It's like a high school pep rally. You see the slogan in e-mails, on wall posters, they pass out T-shirts or mugs with the new slogan
Anirudh Jain
Nov 22, 2019 rated it really liked it
This book takes a cynical look at the corporate structure with razor sharp observations coupled with hyperbole comic strips.

From an incompetent boss to the anti social engineer to the clueless HR, these are all relatable characters and we have encountered with them at some point in our corporate careers. These characters may be depicted by animals to induce humour but sometimes it gets too close for the heart.

One of the best part about the book is that it has letters from people who have encount
Alan Chen
Mar 11, 2012 rated it it was ok
Shelves: fun
An agonizing chore to traverse its 320+ pages. I've always been amused by the Dilbert comic strip, but for some reason this book just isn't funny to me. As a satirical guide to management, I suppose it would be funnier if I were actually a manager. Instead, this book just feels sloppy and uneven. Multiple strips are repeated in different sections, each chapter varies wildly in length from 3 pages to 30+ blocks, and the jokes mostly just fall flat. There is no flow, just an endless series of anec ...more
May 30, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: nonfiction
If you like the Dilbert comics, you'll like this book as well. It gives an ironic description of corporate life, peppered with Dilbert strips and real-life examples (through e-mails that Adams keeps receiving from his readers).

On the plus side:
+ Witty and easily digestible short chunks
+ Related Dilbert strips for every topic
+ Scott Adams' own experience/stories from the trenches
+ Final chapter on how Adams thinks management should be done

On the minus side:
- Style gets repetitive, esp. when you r
Kym Moore
Jun 07, 2019 rated it really liked it
As funny and quirky as some of the scenarios Scott Adams mentions in his book, and considering this was published in 1996, they are painfully accurate in the business world and mocks idiotic management methods we all too often witness. It's quite tongue and cheek.

One of the things he mentions in "Shade the Truth" is so relevant today:
The great thing about the truth is that there are so many ways to avoid it without being a "liar." You can avoid the stigma of being a liar while still enjoying all
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Goodreads Librari...: Combine editions 2 145 Jun 22, 2012 10:57AM  

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Librarian Note: There is more than one author in the Goodreads database with this name. See this thread for more information.

Adams was born in Windham, New York in 1957 and received his Bachelor's degree in Economics from Hartwick College in 1979.

He also studied economics and management for his 1986 MBA from the Haas School of Business at the University of California, Berkeley.

In recent years, Ada

Other books in the series

Dilbert: Business (5 books)
  • Dogbert's Top Secret Management Handbook
  • The Dilbert Future: Thriving on Stupidity in the 21st Century( Dilbert: Business, #3)
  • The Joy of Work: Dilbert's Guide to Finding Happiness at the Expense of Your Co-Workers
  • Dilbert and the Way of the Weasel

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