Simple workplace sabotage techniques

Original author: Charlie Strauss
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In 1944, the Office of Strategic Services , the predecessor of the post-war CIA, preoccupied with acts of sabotage against the enemies of the United States. Among the management work documents that were declassified and published by the CIA, there is a remarkable document called “Field Guide to Simple Sabotage” (PDF) . This guide is not about any bombs; Many councils are aimed at how sympathetic allies are capable of undermining labor productivity and enterprise morale. Here is an excerpt from this guide.

1. Managers and supervisors. To reduce morale and productivity, be courteous to inefficient workers; give them an undeserved markup. Effective workers should be discriminated against and unfairly complained about their work.

2. Employees . Work slowly. Think about how to increase the number of actions needed to complete a task: use a lighter hammer instead of a heavy one; Try to use a small wrench instead of a large one.

3. Organizations and conferences . When possible, refer all cases to committees for "further study and review." Try to make the committees as large and bureaucratic as possible. Hold conferences when you need to do a lot of critical work.

4. Telephone . At the office, hotel and local telephone station, delay phone calls, give incorrect numbers, disconnect people “by chance” or forget to turn off the line to keep others busy.

5. Transportation . Make rail travel as uncomfortable as possible for enemy personnel. Issue two tickets to the same place on the train to generate “interesting” disputes.

Some of these sabotage techniques have become commonplace in the workplace today. It is often difficult to understand where incompetence ends and evil intent begins: the beauty of organizations lies in the fact that most of them do not have an effective immune system against such deliberate surplus of incompetence.

So a week or two ago, I decided to ask (on Twitter) the question, what would a modern version of such a guide look like if you want to sabotage a competitive IT company or a high-tech startup? The obvious answer is: "Send them your worst managers to bankrupt the hapless enemy." But what are the real rules they have to introduce for the best effect?

1. Obviously, engineers and programmers (who need time for deep concentration) should be constantly kept abreast of all developments in the enterprise. So you should make an open office layout (openspace) mandatory for all.

2. Teams are better than individual developers, and everyone should be aware of the valuable contribution of the employee to the respective position. Therefore, let's combine each programmer with a sales manager - preferably working on the phone at the same table - and we will compare them based on the aggregate contribution of each pair to quarterly earnings (stack ranking).

3. Care of the personnel department - to make sure that no one is rocking the boat. Anyone who tries to report abuse or complain, muddles the water. You know what to do.

4. Senior managers must be “winners” (according to Jack Welch’s model), see the stack ranking above. So you should give rise to managers who show energy, inspire and possess charisma to take risks .

5. Employees must be constantly focused on work. Therefore, you should enter the rule of a clean table - any personal items left on the table or in a die can be dumped into the trash at the end of the working day. In fact, you can go further and set the rule of shared computers (hot desking), that is, determine the average parameters that are suitable for the absolute majority of work computers, and install them on each PC and each workplace.

6. All work environments must be virtualized and moved to the corporate file server for secure storage. As soon as we figure out how much virtual machines we need, we can get rid of excess hardware — redundancy is wasteful.

7. Programmers do not need root / admin access to their environments for development. On the other hand, marketers should have rights to manage CRM systems, so they should be allocated global admin rights throughout the network.

8. All communications in the company will pass through a corporate e-mail and instant messaging system of its own design. IT Services will be heavily loaded with work on porting a PocketPC 2006 Second Edition client to Android 2.2 and Windows Vista; it should be released soon, at this stage, the equipment iPaq and Windows XP can be waived. (There is an additional advantage: to prevent developers from dragging their Linux and Mac systems into the office).

9. Volatile meetings should be scheduled for each morning so that the development department shares their thoughts for general awareness of the situation. To ensure that everyone has the opportunity to speak, each participant in the meeting will have a strictly defined time to speak. If they have nothing to say, the rest should remain silent and wait until the end of time to encourage slow-thinking employees.

10. If the project is delayed, then all employees must go into deadly overtime and strain until the work is completed, discarding their own projects and replacing tasks if necessary. If deadly overtime does not bring results at a given time, then as a punishment, ordinary coffee in the dining room should be replaced with decaffeinated coffee.

Comment your thoughts on how to sabotage an IT company to make it look realistic, as if we want to increase productivity.

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