back to article BOFH: Why, I LOVE work courses. Please tell me more, o wise one!

"... and so we thought that you might like to attend this two-day workshop in effective leadership techniques," the Boss burbles, rounding off the professional goal-setting exercise that company policy obliges him to do with me and any other contractor with a contract that's rolled over for more than five years. "Well to be …


  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Sounds Familiar

    I could attend as many of these sort of courses as I like, all complete touchy feely bollox.

    But any mention I make of anything technical that might actually be useful in my current role, not a hope, we have to pay real money for those, the bullshit we do for free in-house.

    "No idea. As I usually choose Hitler or Mussolini – for the salutes – I get asked to leave around then."

    This will be used should they finally force me to attend another!

  2. Unicornpiss Silver badge

    Thank you!

    ...for brightening a Friday that felt more like a Monday. Cheers!

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    At least you get out of the office

    Here at the ChickenShitCompany we just get to be patronized by content-free mandatory courses from the ChickenShitCompany "University" (yes, they call it that!) without ever leaving our desks. Of course, there is no time code for watching this dross so it must be done on client's time - or in your own spare time. Even though the company is big on ethics or at least says it is. I once showed some family members some of this sickly and feeble material (thinking they would laugh) but they just got really concerned I was actually involved in a cult. Most of the US-oriented creators are so immune to satire - or any form of critical thinking - that they cannot see that most of their content actually looks like parody - a sort of reverse Poe's law applies making it impossible to take their earnestness at all seriously.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: At least you get out of the office

      Ah, I see you also work for Big [color redacted]. AC for obvious reasons?

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: At least you get out of the office

      Interestingly enough, this is exactly the same at AnotherSadGuy, a competitor of ChickenShitCompany in AUS

      They offer you all of these at-your-desk training/certification sites but nowhere to book the time, so the client account gets slugged with the cost

      1. Sir Runcible Spoon Silver badge

        Re: At least you get out of the office

        "They offer you all of these at-your-desk training/certification sites but nowhere to book the time, so the client account gets slugged with the cost"

        Technically known as fraud. Whenever I am made to book time to a customer that didn't involve work for the customer I make a special note of it and make sure I get an email from someone saying I should just do it. It's come in handy a couple of times now.

  4. Primus Secundus Tertius Silver badge

    I like the 'leading from behind' approach. I presume it comes from the Duke of Plaza Toro, the Gilbert and Sullivan character: 'he led his regiment from behind, he found it less exciting'.

    The only courses I was ever sent on were to use up the training department budget or to meet some other quota. Nothing to do with what might have been useful to me professionally.

    1. Teiwaz Silver badge


      The only teambuilding course I was sent on resulted in the group going on an alcohol fueled raid on the hotel kitchen at two in the morning and stealing a wedding cake.

      The course ended the next morning, lucky, as given another day, we'd have been looking for a monastery to raid, a day after that we'd have been building longboats.

  5. Sarah Balfour

    I'm just trying to picture a guy with a 70cm (27.6") waist and a 105cm (41.33") gut.

    Do dude kecks go that small…? If so, how'd the fuck would he get 'em over the belly…?!

    Does not compute… this is Blighty - who the fuck measures in centimetres, anyway…?!

    1. ElReg!comments!Pierre Silver badge

      Do dude kecks go that small…?

      Whatever, it could as well have read "0.2 furlong"; most of the male population is blissfully unaware of it's waist measurement. I had to measure just now, I wouldn't even have landed it within 15 cm (and I'm pretty slim).

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I remember it well...

    They had one of "those courses" at the last place I worked. All new starters were required to attend. They kept trying to send me, but I always managed an excuse not to go and they gave up in the end.

    Rumours that I managed to get out of the last attempt by throwinging myself under the wheels of a car resulting in several broken bones and six weeks off work rather than go have always been strongly denied.

    PS My Boss did visit me in hospital, not to show sympathy I think, but to check I hadn't made it all up.

  7. Evil Auditor Silver badge


    What, no mentioning of Maslow's pile of steaming crap hierarchy of needs?

    After hearing about this intellectual construct once too many in one of those "leadership trainings", I eventually gave up on them, refusing to attend another one since. There is one thing though which I've learnt in those trainings: leaders are definitely not created in leadership trainings. At best, they fuck with the brains of second class managers, putting silly ideas of staff motivation in their heads, that wouldn't even work with dogs. Let alone with highly-skilled, cynical engineers.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Maslow

      Team Leading Software Engineers is like herding cats...

      1. Sir Runcible Spoon Silver badge

        Re: herding cats

        all you need is a fire hose.

  8. CheesyTheClown

    Pretty sad

    Why would anyone work for someone like that? I have never been so desperate as to need to work for someone who wears a tie

  9. Dr. Mouse Silver badge

    Brilliant, as usual. Shame I'm a week late...

    "No idea. As I usually choose Hitler or Mussolini – for the salutes – I get asked to leave around then."

    This reminds me of an old friend (may he rest in pieces). He was a top notch programmer earlier in life, but had failed to keep his skills up to date and was unemployed. The job centre sent him on several courses, one of which was, basically, maths for idiots.

    During this course, one lesson was on division with fractions. One answer came out as 8.5, and the teacher explained that you had to apply the result in context. "For example," she said, "you can't have half a child."

    His answer, which prompted the teacher to ask him to leave and never return, was, "Tell Jamie Bulger's parents that."

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I'm surprised this sort of BS would be permitted by their director.


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