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Build a Better Life by Stealing Office Supplies: Dogbert's Big Book of Business Paperback – March 3, 1994

4.2 out of 5 stars 16 customer reviews
Book 2 of 35 in the Dilbert Series

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 112 pages
  • Publisher: Andrews McMeel Publishing; Original edition (March 3, 1994)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0836217578
  • ISBN-13: 978-0836217575
  • Product Dimensions: 8 x 8.1 x 0.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #185,890 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I cannot say enough positive things about BABLBSOS, Scott Adams' first book and the one that started him on his path to fame, glory, and fortune. I bought my first copy in the early nineties at the MIT Tech Coop bookstore, when a fellow geek friend of mine said I absolutely had to read it - he just shoved it into my shopping tote. At that point in time I had never heard of Scott Adams, and I think the Boston Globe was one of a small handful of papers carrying Dilbert (it subsequently took two years of letter writing before my local paper agreed to carry it).
In BABLBSOS, Scott Adams covers his by now familiar territory of the world of American high tech business for the very first time. BABLBSOS is not a rehash of the daily Dilbert strip like so many other collections of Adams'. Rather, BABLBSOS is original material organized by topics, which collectively cover all major aspects of the workplace experience in a high tech company. Since Adams is exploring this material for the first time, and is not doing it in a daily comic strip form, the results are more hard-hitting and concise than Adams' subsequent books. Each page stands on its own and showcases in the best possible way Adams' brilliantly cynical understanding of how businesses all too often really function.
But BABLBSOS is more than just Scott Adams' best work. It also is one of the best business books and management guides ever created, and certainly the pithiest. All too many business books present prescriptions for how businesses should operate. BABLBSOS is the opposite: an "anti-business" book that shows how businesses actually behave, from the perspective of the employees. The challenge and guidance for managers, then, is to do the opposite of the pointy-haired boss, to avoid the situations that Adams presents.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This review is specifically about the Kindle formatting, which is unreadable. At the time of this writing, the formatting of the ebook is essentially an out-of-order page scan. Panels are oddly chopped, and the narrative flow is disrupted by the ordering of the chopped-up panels.

Amazon makes it very hard to tell if or when ebooks are updated, and book samples sometimes aren't long enough to spot these sorts of problems. If your sample doesn't extend past the introduction, be prepared to return the book for a refund and make sure you let Amazon know it's due to defective content.

If and when the ebook is updated, your mileage will vary.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I have just about everything Adams published and imo his earliest material , where he was still finding his 'tone', is inferior to his later , more developed work. This book is from his earlier work and though its an entertaining read its still his earlier work.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
If you like Dilbert comics, you'll probably like this book. Like most of the Dilbert books, all the comics don't follow along the lines of the title. If you are looking for comics about stealing office supplies, this isn't going to be it. The comics are all in black and white.
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Format: Paperback
This book is practical, humorous, and has big, simple cartoon pictures so it's easy to understand. Dogbert gives useful insights on everyday situations such as coffee intake, boss classifications, and hallway greetings. A must read!
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Format: Paperback
Before the boss's hair went pointy, before dinosaurs roamed the strip, before Dogbert became master of the universe, there was Build a Better Life by Stealing Office Supplies. From what your clothes say about you ("I hope you'll ignore the stuff that comes out of my mouth"), to change ("You will appear to be a visionary planner if you decentralize everything which is centralized and centralize everything which is decentralized"), to excuses for being late ("Just remember that your excuse must be more dramatic than those who arrive before you"), this book is fall-out-of-your-chair funny while at the same time being spot-on in describing the surreality of the modern corporate environment. Each page is a Dilbert strip, but written for this book. Together they cover pretty much everything you need to know about how business really operates. The final two pages, "When to change jobs" and "Keeping your perspective" do, penultimately and ultimately, put it all in, well, perspective.
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Format: Paperback
Build a Better Life by Stealing Office Supplies / 0836217578

Recently I started re-reading my Dilbert collections; this is the second collection of unique strips by my count, but they're not precisely Dilbert strips in the traditional sense: each page is a single 4-panel strip where the first panel is Dogbert explaining a rule of business.

The strips are very funny and actually sadly seem quite a "spot on" reflection, even dated as this volume is. I do wish that there was less of a reliance on female stereotypes in some of the pieces -- there's at least two strips that indicate that nicely dressed women are either likely having affairs with upper management or hoping to skate by on sex appeal. Adams can be funnier than that and doesn't need to resort to these stereotypes; fortunately these strips are two out of ~100 and the rest of the book is very funny and fun. (And his later collections have moved away from these "jokes" entirely, I believe.)

~ Ana Mardoll
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