back to article Microsoft seeks patent on employee spy system

Microsoft has filed a patent for a system that monitors the behavior of employees via computers, phone calls, and physical gestures, and alerts human resources if anyone is behaving outside of preferred norms. The patent describes how an increase in an employee’s trust in the boss is the equivalent to a pay rise, so to promote …


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  1. Gannon (J.) Dick

    (hand gesture)

    Anything else you want to know ?

    1. Skyhook


    2. Error Message Silver badge

      All your souls are belong to us

      I, for one, welcome our new Oceania Thought Police overlords.

  2. Blitterbug

    Oh... My... Fucking... God...

    The post is required, and must contain letters.

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    "Microsoft seeks patent on employee spy system"

    When they develop it, will it crash all the time, making the employees freeze (or give a blue face of death) until someone reboots them?

    1. Robert E A Harvey

      "Hello. I looks like you are itching to punch your manager's smug face. Do you want help with that?"

  4. Christoph Silver badge

    Trust improvement ?????

    They want to monitor your every action so as to improve trust? Youse would not read about it.

    By the way, you omitted from the list of actions to be monitored and reported on "Looking at me in a funny way".

    1. Asgard
      Big Brother

      @improve trust

      Any boss who used this system (or even thought it up) would be proving beyond any remaining doubt that they are indeed really that distrustful of other people, including their own employees. It would provide absolute final proof on a scale no one could use lies to cover up.

      The thing is, I wouldn't want to work for any boss like this and I hope everyone would feel the same way. In which case, the distrustful bosses would find it hard to get and keep employees and so their businesses would suffer as a result. (It would also destroy all staff moral of anyone who tried to stay with that kind of boss, so it wouldn't work). It would mean these bosses would be putting themselves and their businesses at a competitive disadvantage in the market place. Which is good news, because it would result in some of their businesses failing, which would push more money in the direction of good companies that considered employee moral and treated employees like human beings.

      Its a good thing for society that the bad bosses finally highlight themselves as embittered, embattled, endlessly scheming, self-interested Narcissists as a warning to everyone to stay away from them. Let their businesses fail and then maybe, finally, they will seek some help they badly need, for their Narcissistic Personality Disorders. Which would leave the rest of us to build better lives for our families, without suffering the abuses of these bosses endlessly increasing control freak tyranny.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      I know a few organisations that do that already

      There is lots of prior art here.

      In any case, regarding the el-reg punchline about punching the boss. You may game a computer system, you cannot game an organisation's system to find a reason to abuse employees and pay them less. So in real life you will suddenly find that you did not have enough brownie points to punch the boss in the face (or harrass him and make him look like an idiot at all hands).

      Been there, done that in an organisation which has similar system of assessment (just not automated) and is _PROUD_ of it.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Expect a visit from the BOFH

    "I think it's time we took a good hard look at this new HR system"

    "Isn't that a fire axe?"

    "Look, I can use it on you, or I can use it on the system. Your choice."

  6. Tim of the Win
    Thumb Down

    1984 here we come :(

    1. bazza Silver badge

      You've not heard of Google?

      Nuff said.

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I have few such reservations.

    Who controls the hardware this is running on? Who installs it, configures and maintains it?

    Completely stupid idea in general though. If ever implemented, I suspect it will be about as effective as stats logging on the telephone system is. Which I might note, is not very. That just measures the speed of response and doesn't measure the quality of response.

    Effective line management is far cheaper, and can also address issues with junior staff engaging in appropriate behaviour through a range of effective remedies starting with the good old fashioned managers glare, and progressing through polite chats to formal disciplinary meetings actually addressing the problems. Meanwhile, this fancy gadget can presumably only log a performance alert with HR.

    1. Arctic fox

      RE: "Effective line management is far cheaper"

      Hmm, yes we do appear to have a difficult choice here.

      1. An Orwellian high-tech approach that stands every chance of creating far more problems than it solves.

      2. Succeeding in getting line managers to do their jobs in a consistent and constructive fashion.

      Hmm.....that's a toughie, approach #1 is nightmare city, whilst at the same time #2 does seem raaather ambitious.

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Prior Art

    Sorry ATT(SBC) has already patent being a bastard boss from hel lor BBFH

    1. Armando 123

      Funny you should say that.

      Once upon a time, I worked on a contract at AT&T. For legitimate reasons, someone there put certain tracking software on certain workstations and confirmed a suspicion about someone getting into financial systems where they didn't belong. Using someone else's workstation.

      That this involved a contracting company associated with the Enron fiasco will surprise no one who ever dealt with them or their IT consulting spinoff, may they rot in bureaucratic hell.

  9. someone up north



  10. dssf

    PURE BS PATENT if approved

    Much of this is already DOABLE:

    Ip phones (vice analog phones)

    browers logs (how much of your off-break time is on work-related surfing)

    firewall logs (going to naughty places or attracting nuisances?)

    access card readers (work start/finish times)

    premises cams (are you allowing tailgaters/are you speeding through the parking lot?)

    And so on.

    The bit about recordign hand gestures/body language is over the top. WAY too invasive and subjective.

    How the frack would this system rate Stephen Hawking?

    Slurs, drools, nods, grimmaces, and doesn't have a natural-sounding voice. Gets around too slowly and is a drain on escort duties of limited staff. Needs help getting out of own chair and unable to feed nor discharge self of fresh and procesed foods.

    What a asinine sytstem for which an asinine patent may be issued.

    It's one thing to produce such systems from scratch or buy them. It's a nasty, stupid ball of wax to allow a patent on something that is obvious and doable in ANY office that wants to go this far. If it is a DEFENSIVE patent, so that NOBODY (even msoft) can obstruct ANYONE implementing such a system, fine. But, if it is a gate-keeping attempt by ms to dole out licenses and obstruct others, hell no. I've been making a database-based performance system for personal use (self-study and to have some skills to demonstrate; it captures all sorts of persona and work-related infor for personnel and compares them to their peers and non-peers in an organization, ties in to work assignments, etc.) and toiled over it since ~ 1994-ish. No damned patent is going to stop me from sharing or selling my schema, interface, back end tables, paper reports, and so on.

    Come to think of it, any decent HR database is maybe 80% of they way there. Different tools and backend code allow for numerous combinations of design and presentation and implementation and robustness.

    1. Goat Jam

      So, Let Me Make Sure I Understand Your Position.

      You have your panties in a twist because Microsoft might use their patent to block other sociopathic coporations from developing a monitoring system that would make George Orwell blush?

      1. Steven Roper

        @Goat Jam

        Maybe he has his panties in a twist because Microsoft are using their patent to develop a monitoring system that would make George Orwell blush to SELL to other sociopathic corporations.

        The mere fact that they're in the process of inventing such an evil system is enough. Once it exists, they'll sell it to other corporations until everyone is forced to work in this hideous Orwellian nightmare.

        Or maybe it's just a reflex response: Patents = Bad and Must Be Opposed!

        I'll add that my trust is not given without the person seeking it damn well EARNING it. If any company I work for wants me to trust them then they'll give me a fair day's pay for a fair day's work, without quibbling about it, and without endlessly trying to get as much as they can while giving as little as possible. There's no way I'll EVER trust any employer who tries to force my trust while treating me like a slave, no matter what technology they try to bring to bear on it.

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I bet Capita are already on the phone asking when they can buy the system.

    1. Emj

      [Quote]I bet Capita are already on the phone asking when they can buy the system.[/quote]

      True, then they will do what only Crapita can do the best, fuck it up, charge the customer for said fuck up and finally it will all end up with the poor customer wanting to hang the project manager but can't because the little shit has buggered off to cock up another project... and the cycle starts again.

      Oh, the MS patent idea sounds crap.

  12. moiety

    "an increase in an employee’s trust in the boss is the equivalent to a pay rise"

    Don't think so.

    1. Phalamir

      Why do I feel that will be used to slash pay? 'We have determined that subjecting you to constant observation and judgement of all facial tics is a form of compensation to you. As such, we are reducing your take-home pay by half, since being our personal meat-Muppet is pay-raise, and you have done nothing to warrant such a raise. Remember: not orgasming at this news shows up as anti-social behavior on the monitors, so act accordingly; of course orgasming at the news is a benefit to you, so we will have to dock you for that too.

  13. Franklin

    A title is optional

    I wonder how this system would rank "throwing a chair when learning that an underling has defected to Google"?

    1. John G Imrie Silver badge

      As with all bonus/pay related metrics

      Anything that would get a peon sacked is seen as proactive and profit enhancing when don by upper Management.

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Such a system would make a good target for some hacking...

  15. Notas Badoff

    But tell me how you really feel

    Seeing something like this makes me think there'll be a patent application sooner or later for analysis, as in Freudian analysis, Jungian analysis, transactional analysis... As long as there's a computer recording/interpreting the sessions, why not? It's just an extrapolation of things like this...

    Actually, total workplace monitoring would have been useful to me more than once. One time the 'system' could have called the medics automatically when I'd gone catatonic after too many months of overwork as a one-body 'team'. Another time, the 'system' could have _reminded_ the boss that I'd been pulling 16 hour days for a few months prior to the merely 'satisfactory' rating on review. "?!?!? What company-saving project? Oh, xyzzy ... Um, yeah..., umm..."

    On any chart with multiple measures I'd'a been offscale in *both* directions on certain days!

  16. Esskay
    Big Brother

    Theory vs Reality

    The theory:

    "“increased efficiency, increased participation, awareness of cultural practices, increased empowerment and engagement of employees, career growth, and trust improvement.”

    The reality:

    "Dear Sir/Madam,

    You are recieving this Automated HR Friendly Production Increasing Email because your hand gestures whilst communicating to female staff member No. 3245-K exceeded the predetermined levels deemed necessary for communication. In addition, productivity has decreased 1.3%, possibly due to the massive weekend you were telling your friends about near the watercooler at lunch time. The company will be re-evaluating the necessity to maintain your employment going forward, in order to protect staff members who ARE performing - such as number 34345-L; who has increased his productivity 3.4% despite having slightly elevated sodium levels today and a susceptibility to a rare genetic disorder that we'll be telling him about before he goes home today.

    Thank you for your co-operation.

    Please note, all employees with genetic disorders will have employment re-evaluated.

  17. Wile E. Veteran
    Big Brother

    Wait until this is picked up by the <insert country here> government

    Wall-to-wall Kinect everywhere. Analysis of all behavior of entire population. Eschelon retired and replaced by M$ system.

    Makes 1984 look like a utopia.

  18. Andrew Jones 2'll be available on the public internet.....

    Well if certain companies haven't yet learnt that SCADA and IP Cameras are not meant to be accessible on the public internet - I can only assume many many companies would suddenly end up with their orwelian database / computer system accessible to the public internet too.

  19. earl grey Silver badge

    bend over

    now we can take care of your review

  20. Goat Jam

    Looks Like We Dodged a Bullet There

    Thank God nobody competent patented this, otherwise I'd be getting a bit worried right now.

  21. zen1

    let em try to implement it... never fear...

    BOFH is here.

  22. Skyhook

    What are they afraid of?

    1. Ken Hagan Gold badge

      Re: available on the public internet

      You mean, like an *interactive* version of Big Brother?

      Sounds fun, but I think Endemol might want royalties.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Already has been.

      Lots of prior art here.

    3. Armando 123

      Plus, with MS, the high-end version of the software will throw chairs at the slackers.

      Well, the rank and file slackers, of course. Not the management slackers; they'll get promotions.

  23. /dev/me


    "an increase in an employee’s trust in the boss is the equivalent to a pay rise"

    Oh, well, if it's all the same, I'll take the pay rise thankyouverymuch

  24. jake Silver badge

    Speaking as an employer ...

    I want absolutely nothing to do with this thing.

    Hire good people, pay 'em at least 50% more than the competition would[1], give 'em more perks than the competition, and don't micromanage them. Just let 'em get on with it. That's why you're paying top-dollar, right?

    All this kind of micromanagement will do is create a paranoid workforce, and completely destroy anything resembling morale and productivity.

    Microsoft's marketing department obviously has no clue about keeping employees gruntled. Remind me again why it's good for Marketing to run an Engineering company?

    [1] My four "permanent" fieldhands get around 6 times more $/hr than they would elsewhere, have free room & board, TV, Internet and all utilities are payed, the only bills they have are for their personal phones and vehicles. Likewise the foreman & his assistant (his wife), who get about double what they would make elsewhere. All are fully insured to boot (including a variation of "renters insurance"). The day workers have similar benefits. We have an all-hands planning meeting twice a week (Tuesday & Friday, over lunch), and I never need to tell anybody what to do the rest of the week. Day folks come & go with the seasons (we do re-hire good folks when we have work, so the faces are fairly consistent), but the "live ins" have all been with me for over a decade.

  25. Mike Bell

    Think of the children...

    ...growing up in this shitty world where a corporation simply owns your ass.

    People who dream up ideas like this are sociopaths.

  26. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Looking to sweet retirement

    I'll send the HR department a box of cat turds as my going away gift.

    1. JohnG

      "All this kind of micromanagement will do is create a paranoid workforce, and completely destroy anything resembling morale and productivity."

      Exactly! Management with so little trust in their employees that they deploy such a system shouldn't let those employees in the door to handle sensitive corporate data or take responsibility for activities which could determine the success or failure of the organisation.

    2. amanfromearth

      If only Steve were still around

      I'd love to hear his rant about this.

    3. Steven Roper
      Thumb Up

      Re: Think of the children

      Which is exactly why I don't have any.

    4. Armando 123

      "growing up in this shitty world where a corporation simply owns your ass."

      Absolutely! Afterall, @ss-owning is the government's job.

  27. Michael 28

    Prior art?

    All hail our new metal overlords!

  28. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Soooo, if this thing measure deviations from a learned baseline then it's in everyone's interest to ensure the baseline is set correctly.

  29. Blofeld's Cat

    Pass me the splurge gun...

    Most of the truly creative people I have ever the pleasure to work with, had some sort of personality trait that would send this software off the end of the scale.

    What would such a system would make of rainbow hairstyles, inflatable alligators, BOFH mugs, chair races and design documents written in the style of Tolkien? That's before we get to the bare feet and a disinclination to wash.

    Alternatively you could have a neat, silent office full of tidy, emotionless clones, gently coasting to oblivion, as they wait for the next startling revelation from their know-nothing managers.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      @AC 11:48

      "Soooo, if this thing measure deviations from a learned baseline then it's in everyone's interest to ensure the baseline is set correctly"

      Doing that as we speak. Third coffee in a row, gesturing wildly, and only returning to the computer to post on El Reg and check my twitter updates. Still waiting for another guy here to accept the office chair race challenge...

      I'm a bit undecided whether the fastest should win, or if the number and difficulty of stunts should be included in the overall score. But I *trust* my line manager to make the right call on that one.

  30. Anonymous Coward

    In all but the most perfect of IT departments...

    ... software of this complexity would be doomed from the outset.

    The IT dept. where I work are so busy just keeping track of silly user errors, everything else goes up the swanny. I swear when you walk into the IT dept. head office, there's a calendar on the wall 10 years out of date. We get emails like "Could you please remove your personal files of XYZ drive, as it's only a 160gb drive and there's only 10% left." - yep, I kid you not.

    This IT department really does think it's 2001, nobody has told them terabytes of storage can be had for peanuts. I've got more disk space at home than the office file servers which serve 60 people.

    So, I can only imagine if they were tasked with installing some form of electronic employee monitoring, they'd fall at the first hurdle - not enough disk space.

    I think, fortunately for most workers out there, reality will prevail and a system like this will never see the light of day.

    1. Vic

      > This IT department really does think it's 2001, nobody has told them terabytes

      > of storage can be had for peanuts.

      In a bewildering number of IT departments, the real problem is that the beancounters just won't let them buy the kit. The IT bods know exactly how much it costs, but they don't have control of the budget. So they spend more in fire-fighting problems than it would cost to prevent the problem.


      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Good point - your spot on there, but where I work, the IT dept don't do themselves many favours.

        They got us a NAS box for the dev office, 3TB, spent a fortune on an outsourced apple IT expert to repair an aging macosx file server - and for that price, they could've simply pulled finger with a lasting solution, instead of constantly patching. In fact, they are about to purchase that solution finally, after wasting countless hours and cash on stop-gap temporary fixes. Crazy.

  31. Ramazan

    a supervisor--supervisee interaction, a supervisee--supervisor interaction...

    How interesting, unidirectional interaction here.

    Mine being unacceptable for business meeting

  32. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    "Then again, any computer system can be gamed."

    Exactly so, bring it on. It'l be as much use as trying to read body language.

  33. Ramazan

    false achievements

    > 7. The method of claim 1, wherein the analysis results include a score reflecting frequency of use of actions associated with desired and undesired behaviors.

    What are they trying to achieve with that? Initially I thought about Getting Job Done, but the text indicates otherwise...

  34. Alan Firminger

    A patent application must include details so that 'one skilled in the art' may assemble a working 'embodiment' of the invention. A patent will never be granted if there is no explanation how to make it.

  35. Jon Press

    Return of the Overseer

    No Victorian factory would have been complete without its complement of Overseers checking on everything from productivity to moral behaviour both in and out of the workplace.

    I'm surprised that this patent doesn't extend to the home - you wouldn't want anyone badmouthing their colleagues or the company in private, now, would you? Or failing to put in their extra few hours of unpaid overtime. Or meeting up with the employee of a competitor. Etc.

    I'm sure it can all be built into your Xbox and you might even get a slight discount for the privilege.

    1. Vic

      > A patent will never be granted if there is no explanation how to make it.


      A patent *should* never be granted if there is no explanation how to make it. But the USPTO just doesn't care about that, and grants patents anyway.

      Since the burden of overturning a US patent is so high, such inappropriate patents become good troll fodder :-(


    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Al, buddy -

      This is the *USPTO* we're talking about. It will pass without so much as a quick scan from a near-sighted PFY intern.

  36. Antti Roppola

    Prior art - Paranoia by West End Games

    Sounds like "Paranoia" by West End Games where an insane all controlling computer executes citizens for treason on balance of probabilities; if citizens act suspiciously and accumulate a set quantity of treason points.

    Friend computer!

    1. KroSha
      Thumb Up

      Great game! "I'm sorry, that information is not available at your security level". Bags the violet laser.

      So much of this system is going to depend on the baseline and expectations of the controllers. I can easily imagine that *someone*, somewhere will hack it, a load of CEOs and Beancounters will suddenly find that they are at 3x treason points and the whole thing will be immediately canned.

  37. Vic

    *How much* Prior Art?

    This sort of thing has been going on for centuries. It's a classic example of "$really_old_thing but done on a computer".

    One of the reason Snom[1] phones are so popular is that even the basic models have the ability to interact with a web server on any event. So every time the phone goes on or off hook, every time a call is placed or terminated, ... - there's an entry in the web server log, and possibly an overview application showing the current state of the call centre, etc.

    I'm glad Microsoft is wasting its money on such nonsensical patents, but I fear the USPTO will grant them anyway.


    [1] Hateful little things.

  38. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Orwellian or just plain incompetent.

    If you ever see this technology or other flawed metrics (including discredited psychological tests) used by any employer, I suggest you leave the place double time and black list any like employer, because they are obviously too incompetent or malicious to not buy and use it.

    As stated in other comments, managers do not need these toys if they are competent and do their job properly e.g. there is mutual trust and appropriate compensation.

    I would not discount the possibility that sponsors/users of this technology set could be part of the hidden percentage of the population who are potential Psychopaths, given Psychopaths naturally gravitate towards positions of power.

    I have seen first hand just how stupid all this management automation technology can be e.g. the Symantec suites of asset/security management software can cause significant thrashing and stuttering, thus significantly degraded performance, on otherwise speedy and powerful machines and bring laptops to their knees. I suspect this misguided technology will just add to the load and ironically further reduce productivity.

    I would vote for Symantec and Mc Afee to be terminated before Microsoft, because they cause far more annoying problems due to seriously flawed products, which seem poor value for money compared to other software houses products.

  39. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    And suddenly...

    ...I am grateful that I am allowed to fill out timesheets myself, although the requirement to break down all activities accurately has become a bit of a nuisance lately.

    On a side note: The word "trust" is completely out of place in the context of a surveillance system like that!

    (And as stated by someone else earlier, trust in your boss does not pay any bills and is not comparable to a pay rise at all.)

  40. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Wow! My manager must be a hopeless failure...

    All she cares about is:

    - Do I do all of the work she assigns me on time?

    - Do I do it well?

    - Is it well-reviewed by all outside of our department?

    I could spend 6 hours a day surfing for porn and go to the office in a clown suit, and if those three criteria were met, she'd be good.

    Yeah, there's a reason that when we got acquired, the acquirers came to me and said, "We really need your skill set. What can we do to make you stay with us?" and my response was, "Keep my manager, and keep me reporting to her."

    1. KroSha

      It isn't easy to find a good manager that groks you, and if you're lucky enough to have one, cherish them.

  41. Jean-Luc Silver badge

    Ha ha ha.

    Interviewee: "Does your company use MS1984? Does it work well for you?"

    Interviewer: "Yes - it helps us leverage our human capital and maximize synergies across the workplace, while aligning our sustainable and respect-based company culture. We can be proactive in positioning our initiatives on a going-forward basis... ... ... ... ..."

    Interviewee: "Really sorry, but I just realized I have an urgent appointment I have to go to."

    p.s. A good chunk of my work is on HR ERP systems - some companies are so incompetent that they can't use their million dollar software to tell you if someone on their payroll is currently working as a nurse, a trainer or has been detached to a special project. Think this will be different? Or will they use the "Microsoft good employee basic template"? Sharepoint anyone?

    Can't make this stuff up. And patented to boot.

    p.p.s. I wonder what it'd make out of Ballmer. That would be one good use out of it.

  42. Anonymous Coward

    Balmer Overloads MS Employee Bahaviour Spy System

    How could he not?

  43. Graham Marsden
    Big Brother


    ... the beatings will continue until morale improves...!

  44. Anonymous Coward


    Every time one of these 'company N files for absurd patent' articles comes along, everyone goes bugshit without realizing that, among other things,

    - Patents are written to be massively broad, and to list as a claim anything that might possibly ever be done by anyone in the spacetime continuum. You'll get, "An engine made of magnesium" and a claim for claim 1 "...but made of squirrels instead".

    - Per above, a claim does not mean an intent to use. You're certainly not required to implement ever, if any, claim of a patent; anything otherwise would be absurd.

    - Again, the purpose of the patent is -protection- of the basic idea. It's nowhere close to being a product roadmap. So FFS stop with the damn hysteria! Anybody doing lots of human behavior research is going to end up with scads or horribly ominous sounding things. It doesn't mean they're eyeing nascent dictatorship...

  45. jubtastic1
    Big Brother

    Freedom is Slavery

    "While he was lost in his thoughts, Winston’s body had been performing the exercises routinely. Now he is suddenly startled out of his reverie by the instructress from the telescreen addressing him directly. Shouting at him as “6079 Smith W” the woman tells him to pay more attention and recalls him to the regimented present where each man is a coded number and the telescreens spy on every activity."

  46. kain preacher Silver badge

    The beatings will continue until morale improves.

    I'm filling a patent to disburtse anti psychotics in aerosole form on timer.

    Seriously with the economy in the toilet and \people in fear of losing there jobs you want to ad this stress to them ? Have they not heard of work place shootings ? it might not even make it that point. You just pick up the first object and out it through the bosses head . Or run him/her down in the parking lot .

  47. N2 Silver badge

    & when

    The HR system decides we havnt earned enough points to please our ubermasters do we get fired by e-mail?

    Thankfully I jumped ship long ago & f**ked off to France!

  48. Wize

    I thought that getting good results... proof of a good employee. If it takes more coffee breaks and the odd chat to help the flow of ideas/reduce stress/improve morale/etc then so be it.

    And trusting your boss is not the same as a pay rise. Liking your boss doesn't put food on your table. And would anyone trust their boss with this junk installed?

  49. AngryChimp87

    I can't wait

    I cannot wait for this sort of monitoring to become common practice.

    Then if you want to create a successful start-up company simply avoid using such Orwellian methods, actually respect your staff as human beings and you will easily out-perform these idiots.

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