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45 Reviews
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This book rivals anything Stephen King could imagine!
This book is like spending 40 hours a week in hell...
which is where I used to work, as a matter of fact.
I can't believe I used to sit in my cubicle with a
headphone growing out of my ear, staring at blank
walls we were not allowed to decorate, reading
meaningless memos from our last "Quality Driven
Leadership" meeting and...
Published on March 8, 1997

versus
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Horrid formatting makes this e-book unreadable.
This is one of the few Dilbert-related books I haven't read, and was pleased to see it for free under Kindle Unlimited. Unfortunately, there's a continual formatting error throughout the book that gives me a headache when I try to read it; words will look like "and then he moved marginall y over to the desk. And Dilbert was overjoye d with it" ... that space...
Published 3 months ago by Rich M.


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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This book rivals anything Stephen King could imagine!, March 8, 1997
By A Customer
This book is like spending 40 hours a week in hell...
which is where I used to work, as a matter of fact.
I can't believe I used to sit in my cubicle with a
headphone growing out of my ear, staring at blank
walls we were not allowed to decorate, reading
meaningless memos from our last "Quality Driven
Leadership" meeting and wondering how my brainless
boss could somehow manage to come up with an idea
more idiotic than the last one.

And then, to top it all off, I find out that Scott
Adams spied on me, wrote a book and
I'm not seeing a penny from the royalties! This is hell.

Seriously, if you have ever been an incompetent manager --
or have suffered at the hands of one -- this book is a
must-read. But be prepared to be horrified. It will be
the story of your corporate life...and it's NOT a pretty
tale!
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Read it and weep - it is terrifying!, August 20, 2001
By 
Lesley West (St James, Western Australia) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Dogbert's Top Secret Management Handbook (Paperback)
The true horror in this fantastically funny book is its incredible accuracy. For any one who works in a corporate environment with levels of management it reads like a horror story, all the more frightening because you know all of the characters personally.
Yes it is hysterically funny. But read it at your own peril. You will never look at your colleagues and managers in the same way.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars LOL, January 19, 2005
By 
As luck would have it, I was reading Dogbert's Top Secret Management Handbook when an old friend showed up at my door with a sad tale. Rich was an IT guy at a bank in Florida that had gone through five buy-outs.

"I always survived before," he said. "So, I didn't think anything of it this time."

He did not survive this one. He told me how he was doing 90% of the work. The boss was a goof-off, who played a lot of golf, and there was a pretty new hire who really did not know how to program, but she had a great smile. Rich was a good team player-filling in for her deficits and doing most of the boss's work as well. So of course, the guy doing 90% of the work was the one who got sacked.

I even surprised myself when I found myself saying, "You have got to read this book," pointing to Scott Adams' cartoon book. Yes, Scott Adams may be a cartoonist, but he is also a highly accurate chronicler of corporate culture.

Since I am not a manger, I really don't know what possessed me to read this book, which I did despite Dogbert's "WARNING-- IF YOU ARE NOT A MANAGER PUT THIS BOOK DOWN RIGHT NOW. THERE ARE THINGS YOU'RE BETTER OFF NOT KNOWING."

So as a non-manager I am what Dogbert calls "a curious little wanker." Rich, who is now thinking of starting his own company, was about to benefit by my being such a nosey parker. I told him, "Everything you are going through is in here!"

What really endeared me to this book was the use of similes, which are peppered throughout, such as:

"If you hear a new management buzzword, jump on it like a starving squirrel on the last peanut on earth."

And:

"Working in a cubicle has made my ego shrivel like a raisin on an Egyptian sidewalk."

The faulty logic is priceless, such as in this example:

"Doctors are satisfied workers; doctors work long hours-increasing your employees' workload will make them as happy as doctors."

There is an absolutely hysterical send-up of Maslow's Hierarchy of needs, and a chart of companies combining their synergies that will have you howling on the floor.

Now, if only Scott Adams could get the highly secretive Catbert to spill his guts for an entire book-wow, stop the presses!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Dog's Eye View of Middle Management, August 21, 2004
If you think you can learn management skills from a character in a newspaper comic strip, this book is not for you. On the other hand, if you read Scott Adams' Dilbert comic strip before you read the headlines of your local paper, or if you find yourself LOL at most of his cartoons, you have already committed this book to memory and don't need this review.

Dogbert's Top Secret Management Handbook is a combination of reprinted Dilbert comic strips from the first half of the 1990's and a management handbook written as if it were the work of a cartoon dog named Dogbert. The cartoons are funnier than the handbook. I gave up reading the book linearly and read the cartoons first. Then I went back and read the management handbook.

The cartoons work better because you get to see Scott Adams view of management both from the manager's point of view and also from that of the dumbfounded workers. It is this juxtaposition of manager logic and worker reality that makes the Dilbert strips so funny.

The text of the handbook is entirely one-sided. You get to see the world from the unrelenting point of view of the demented management expert. The cruel logic is there, but you, the gentle reader, are forced into the role of Dilbert facing the twisted thinking of middle management. You may laugh on the outside, but you may be crying inside. I do not recommend reading this book before spending lots of time with your own manager.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It doesn't get any better than this!, December 6, 1996
By A Customer
Scott Adams is a genius, as we all know. What I didn't know is that he could best himself. After reading "The Dilbert Principle" and saying "Right on!" to myself a lot, then reading this book, I find even more enjoyment in Dogbert's handbook. Dogbert is more brutally to the point without frills and direct than much of what was in "The DIlbert Principle." TDP is too serious. DTSMH is a more comfortable read.

I love the parts about motivating employees and how management continually seeks to avoid compensating employees and providing empty rewards and trying to make them appear great and sought after. How true! How long do they think a donkey will chase a cardboard carrot anyway??

My only criticism of both books is the repetition of strips within each book. I'll be the first to admit my greed in wanting as much Dilbert as possible
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A satire of business books that's actually a good business book!, July 17, 2008
By 
Arthur Digbee (Indianapolis, IN, USA) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Dogbert's Top Secret Management Handbook (Paperback)
If you are familiar with the Dilbert cartoon, then you know Scott Adams' ability to skewer modern business organizations. This book mostly consists of text organized in little easy-to-understand bits, just like a real business book. This satirical text is illustrated with Dilbert cartoons. Of course it's funny, and if you like Dilbert, you'll enjoy it.

What makes the book really work, though, is that it's actually loaded with good management advice. When the book came out, I was an object of management and enjoyed the book as making fun of the people above me in a large organization. Now I'm a low-level perpetrator of management and I find this to be a really good source of "what not to do." I still laugh but I also appreciate Adams' ability to find the humor - - and the inhumanity - - in even well-meaning management.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A True Classic, October 14, 2003
This review is from: Dogbert's Top Secret Management Handbook (Paperback)
This is a great book. Adams does a wonderful job of capturing Dogbert's arrogance and some common themes in hi-tech management.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars You've Got to Laugh, January 20, 2011
This review is from: Dogbert's Top Secret Management Handbook (Paperback)
At times, you think "this is too true to be funny," but you can't help laughing. Everyone will recognize from somewhere in their own experience, the horrible boss, boring meeting, subversive co-worker and a personnel department with its own agenda.

The text covers such topics as the management zombie stare, making decisions, blundering your way to the top and other useful skills for managers. You don't have to be a manager to appreciate the humor in the text and the familiar comic strips featuring Dilbert and the pointy-haired boss. Although the book is 15 years old already, the topics are as fresh as ever.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Horrid formatting makes this e-book unreadable., August 15, 2014
By 
Rich M. (Pennsylvania, USA) - See all my reviews
This is one of the few Dilbert-related books I haven't read, and was pleased to see it for free under Kindle Unlimited. Unfortunately, there's a continual formatting error throughout the book that gives me a headache when I try to read it; words will look like "and then he moved marginall y over to the desk. And Dilbert was overjoye d with it" ... that space between the last letter of occasional words is just so aggravating.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars At last, an explanation for government, August 26, 2011
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Dogbert's Top Secret Management Handbook (Paperback)
Working on my 3rd decade in Federal service, and having a wife who is also a long-term Federal employee, at last I understand why government operates as it does. This book is not describing the workings of a Federal agency; it is clearly the textbook followed by all Federal agencies when developing their policies and operational procedures.

I began reading a selection from this book out loud to my wife, who was in another room. She had not the slightest idea what it was I was reading to her. I asked her what she thought when I was finished, and she hollered back, "What is that? Is that a draft for the updated manager's manual?" As Dave Barry says, "I swear, I am not making this up." Lest you think my wife a bit "slow", I assure you, she is not. I have read countless operations bulletins over the years that used some of the language in this book almost verbatim.

In fact, and again, I am not making this up, when setting up certain of our computers at work for speech recognition capability, several pages of this book have been selected as source reading material to teach the software to recognize specific user speech patterns. It is sorely tempting to suppose there is also an ulterior motive to imbue the readers with certain expectations as to the conduct of management.

This is a 5 star read, highly recommended for those times when you need a little cheering up, or when you wish to plumb the otherwise incomprehensible source for Federal policies and practices. At the next presidential debate, observe carefully and you just might see a little red and white corner of a book peeking out of some jacket pockets. Apparently, Dilbert makes for good debate prep, too.
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Dogbert's Top Secret Management Handbook
Dogbert's Top Secret Management Handbook by Scott Adams (Paperback - October 21, 1997)
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