back to article BOFH: Who us? Sysadmins? Spend time with other departments?

BOFH logo telephone with devil's horns "And these are the Systems people – Simon and Stephen," the Boss says, leading a smiling man into the office. "Simon, Stephen, this is Daniel. Daniel's the Company's new internal relationship manager." "Our what now?" "The new Internal Relationship Manager." "Did we have an old …

  1. Korev Silver badge
    Coat

    In a matter of moments the complainers have woken from their slumber and several hands are raised in unison.

    I may not need that pillow after all.

    Looks like the other attendees did though...

    1. b0llchit Silver badge
      Devil

      Well, it is exactly like real meetings. Objections are plenty whenever "commitment" is tabled. From there a stall is forced.

    2. Blackjack Silver badge

      A pillow is for amateurs, get enough complainers; and enough caffeine and salty snacks, and you can get the new hire to die from a heart attack.

      That does drag the meeting a bit however, so you can go by the old tried and trusted method of find stuff they posted online that will get them fired.

      1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

        That's all a bit non-violent for the BOFH.

        1. Blackjack Silver badge

          "Talked someone into having a heart attack" does sound scary as hell however.

          1. tezboyes

            The classic technique of giving someone enough rope, they do the rest themselves...

      2. Mark 85 Silver badge

        That does drag the meeting a bit however, so you can go by the old tried and trusted method of find stuff they posted online that will get them fired.

        If they haven't posted anything like that, then feel free to post something for them. A BOFH can pull that off and not leave an evidence trail.

      3. bpfh Silver badge

        Bastardised rule 35

        If stuff posted online doesn’t exist, it will be made…

        1. Omgwtfbbqtime
          Trollface

          Re: Bastardised rule 35

          Oh, it exists - you just might need to remove the context...

  2. Pete 2 Silver badge

    An important role

    > work with divisions of the company to help foster workplace relationships

    There was a lovely quote in The Week UK last week:

    The great mistake made by

    intelligent people is to refuse

    to believe that the world is

    as stupid as it is.”

    It sounds like this Internal Relationship Manager will help in two ways. First as a personal example and secondarily by showing the sysadmins what all the other people in the company are really like.

    I expect tears, but not of joy.

    1. BebopWeBop
      Devil

      Re: An important role

      Depends on who is crying

    2. Ol'Peculier

      Re: An important role

      A common mistake that people make when trying to design something completely foolproof is to underestimate the ingenuity of complete fools.

      'Nuff said.

    3. veti Silver badge

      Re: An important role

      An even more common mistake by slightly less clever people is to assume that others are stupid merely because they misunderstand their motivations.

  3. Coastal cutie

    "I for one can't wait," the PFY says. "We'll finally get the chance to work closely with people and pool our resources to share the costs of any new equipment we might need."

    Why did my mind instantly jump to the delicious irony of a department paying for the new surveillance equipment the BOFH and PFY will be using to upgrade their capability, based on their increased access in this new co-working heaven (hell)

  4. Captain Scarlet Silver badge
    Facepalm

    Happens every few years

    I cringe as nothing improves and only the complaints continue.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Happens every few years

      But you do get a shiny new logo and possibly a new mug

      Last week it was 'Net Zero' and '100% of our energy comes from renewable sources'... well yes, you can get 'bio' diesel for the hundreds of company vans/trucks, but what about the oil for heating the buildings and the diesel for the standby generators to cover outages in the '100% renewable electricity'

      I'm tired of pointing out that our latest new 'company values' are the same as the old 'company values', except you have chosen new words for the 'values' and simplified from 6 down to just 5... and the associated new logo looks like noise on a TV screen and the different colour may 'signify inclusivity' but having the blobs of different sizes and randomly placed does make it look like a token gesture

  5. AlanSh
    Happy

    No fenestration?

    Very poor this week - everyone survived.

    1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

      Re: No fenestration?

      I didn't see that one coming. "Internal relationship manager" had the ring of underlying cause on a death certificate.

    2. Charlie Clark Silver badge

      Re: No fenestration?

      For now, it's just a bit of delegation before the death by a thousand questions…

    3. Vincent Ballard
      Headmaster

      Re: No fenestration?

      Didn't Chekhov have something to say about powdered glass? Or maybe that's been saved for the sequel.

      1. TeeCee Gold badge
        Coat

        Re: No fenestration?

        You mean:

        Never walk around barefoot, there are plenty of evil bastards around who have access to powdered glass.

        Chekov

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: No fenestration?

        Checkov had *a* gun over the mantle. The BOFH has a veritable armory.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: No fenestration?

          You're not talking about Star Trek Chechov are you?

          1. J. Cook Silver badge

            Re: No fenestration?

            Negative. there are no 'nuclear wessels' here.

            (with all due apologies to Walter Koenig, of course.)

    4. Spanners Silver badge
      WTF?

      Re: No fenestration?

      Not even any defenestration...

    5. bpfh Silver badge

      Re: No fenestration?

      …. For now…

    6. G.Y.

      Re: No fenestration?

      DEfenestration!

      1. Montreal Sean

        Re: No fenestration?

        Fenestration is what you get when you rewind the defenestration video to watch it again.

        1. stiine Silver badge
          Devil

          Re: No fenestration?

          You, too?

        2. tezboyes

          Re: No fenestration?

          Re-fenestration ?

  6. Michael H.F. Wilkinson
    Coffee/keyboard

    Olympic level stick in the mud

    Sheer genius, that. We all know the type

    1. The Oncoming Scorn Silver badge
      Coffee/keyboard

      Re: Olympic level stick in the mud

      If I'd been drinking tea, a new keyboard would have been required at "whose degree apparently didn't include the paper "Poison Chalice Recognition 101"".

      1. J. Cook Silver badge

        Re: Olympic level stick in the mud

        Just remember that immortal line from The Court Jester:

        "The pellet with the poison's in the vessel with the pestle. The chalice from the palace has the brew that is true."

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Olympic level stick in the mud

          Hans: "Do you not see that if we kill him with the pill from the till by making with it the drug in the jug, you need not light the candle with the handle on the gateau from the chateau!":René: "Simple plots are always the best."

          'Allo 'Allo, 'Gâteau from the Château' episode

      2. Blackjack Silver badge

        Re: Olympic level stick in the mud

        I honesty don't get why more people don't get the transparent plastic warper thing on their keyboards, sure it makes typing harder but it saves money on buying new keyboards.

  7. Prst. V.Jeltz Silver badge
    Headmaster

    see icon

    There are murmurs of approval at the thought of more free time and money so the PFY have some spade work to do.

    tsk!

  8. the.spike
    Thumb Up

    I tied an onion to my belt, as was the style at the time..

    Bonus point for the Grandpa Simpson reference!

    1. chivo243 Silver badge
      Pint

      Re: I tied an onion to my belt, as was the style at the time..

      ahhh, beat me to it, late to the party this afternoon... Indeed it was the style of the time, and wasn't human sacrifice? They did it in the 30s!

      Have one on me! ---------->

      1. veti Silver badge

        Re: I tied an onion to my belt, as was the style at the time..

        Human sacrifice never goes out of fashion...

  9. Ozan

    And I was reading old BOFH stories today. Way too slow day at work. At least Noone tries this shit in a construction site :)

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      That is because everyone knows that is where the bodies go, and it is far too easy to add another 1 or 2!!!

      Just keep working, agree with everything suggested and looking the other way !!!

      :)

      1. Ozan

        That was actually said to me when I started working.

  10. BebopWeBop
    Thumb Up

    The murmurs drop a little as people contemplate us identifying the need for their department to pay for our new coffee machine.

    Bang on!

  11. ColinPa Silver badge

    "You need to listen to your users more"

    Our team had 4 people in it, and it needed about 12, so some work was not being done - and our customers complained.

    We were offered a senior person to help "understand the users and their problems". We had conversations like

    Him: These users say they need a faster machine for their builds

    Us: They don't need a faster machine; their current machine is lightly loaded all the time. The problem is the source is on a remote system the other side of the Atlantic. If they cached it locally then the build would be faster. They dont know how to do this.

    Him:These customers complain because the network is wrong.

    Us: They are trying to use the wrong configuration. They need to change their definitions - and think it will be quicker if we change the network rather than them fix their configuration.

    We gave him some of the smaller problems to fix and he was very happy.

    After a month he reported back... they need an extra 10 people to do the work. He almost wanted to join us because he learned so much.

    1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

      Re: "You need to listen to your users more"

      Almost!

    2. Sam not the Viking Silver badge
      Pint

      Re: "You need to listen to your users more"

      Several times I have had 'experts' brought in 'to help out'.

      These experts learn that they actually know very little, learn a lot then f-off, never to be heard of again. When they've gone, peace and quiet resumes, leaving the opportunity to do the job, finish early and ---->

      1. The Oncoming Scorn Silver badge
        Holmes

        Re: "You need to listen to your users more" - Offsite Experts

        Some years back, at a certain pharma in Kent, we had a "company" decide or was offered to tender & was determined to prove they could undercut the rate the current MSP's were being paid by one third to half, this was of concern to most of us due to working as part of the clients internal team with little or no interaction with our "management" as contractors (The MSP had one permy on site). More importantly were we going to be shown the door\suffer a rate cut.

        It was obvious the way this prospective company's mindset was going:

        New cheaper bodies, that we can switch, rotate & deploy them at will to other clients* as needed or not even have them on-site at all until required.

        After about a week or two on site, in which time they learned that the requirement of full background checks, multiple various regulatory courses, individual site H&S & it's build process's courses before they even got to the site knowledge part** & realised that they couldn't just pull "Tom, Dick or Harry" from one client halfway around the M25 to go sort out "Izzy's latest issue in building 225" without all those pre-requisites in place & decided with a vast amount of egg on their formerly overconfident & glowing faces with brick-able smiles that they couldn't compete at all & if anything having to bring on a whole new team would actually them cost more than their projected profit was going to be.

        *Funnily enough, this is the mindset of my current employer, that I can potentially just drop my "Onsite required presence for an outage" to go & do something 2 hours away for a different client, granted the idea is that it's for sporadic events, but goalposts do change.

        **We had a new guy brought in & he spent three weeks on this before being pulled by the existing MSP for some reason (He wasn't happy at time he spent being wasted).

        1. Pirate Dave Silver badge

          Re: "You need to listen to your users more" - Offsite Experts

          My previous job was "outsourced" to an MSP who then outsourced the actual work to a group of network "experts" overseas. The MSP had convinced manglement that they could do a much better job for slightly less money. Yeah, sure.

          About 4 months after I was let go, the entire network was crypto'ed - desktops, servers, they even went into the network switches and firewalls. They paid the ransom, then got whacked again a few weeks later. Their network was completely down for 2 or 3 months while those overseas "experts" tried to get things back under control. I heard that the MSP had to bring in another group to put things back to rights.

          "Experts". Riiiight. Because people are as interchangeable as Lego blocks.

          1. Hot Diggity
            Happy

            Re: "You need to listen to your users more" - Offsite Experts

            Did you spend the ransom or is it wisely and untraceably invested?

            1. Pirate Dave Silver badge

              Re: "You need to listen to your users more" - Offsite Experts

              I almost wish I'd had some hand in that, for closure if nothing else, but sadly, their incompetence needed no malevolent assistance from me. The Russians/NKoreans/Nigerians/Uruk-Hai/Underwear-Gnomes pwned them good and hard for a long time, in ways far beyond my ken. It was, well and truly, popcorn time for me.

          2. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

            Re: "You need to listen to your users more" - Offsite Experts

            "Experts". Riiiight.

            Maybe it was the experts.

            1. Pirate Dave Silver badge

              Re: "You need to listen to your users more" - Offsite Experts

              I did have a professor call me up one day and ask point-blank if I thought the "experts" had done it. I told him I had no idea, but it was doubtful as they really hadn't seemed that bright when I'd worked with them before I was let go.

              1. veti Silver badge

                Re: "You need to listen to your users more" - Offsite Experts

                Yeah, that's the impression I'd be trying to give as well..

            2. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: "You need to listen to your users more" - Offsite Experts

              "Expert", made up of:

              "Ex-" - as in has been.

              "Xpert" (pronounced "Spurt" - a drip under pressure.

          3. Wellyboot Silver badge

            Re: "You need to listen to your users more" - Offsite Experts

            "Because people managers are as interchangeable as Lego blocks"

            FTFY :)

  12. Danny 2 Silver badge

    Won't somebody think of the scientists?

    Devi Sridhar has been a guiding light throughout Covid, calm, rational and informative. The best thing in Scotland since, well, hills and rain? We don't have much going for us. I admit it, I love her and will fight any of you for the chance to kiss her feet.

    She just mucked up seriously today by asking for an end to internet anonymity because a scientist was driven to suicide by internet trolls. No, Devi, no. Trolls don't drive you to suicide, only family and friends can.

    "I know a lot about that subject, but I know nothing about this subject I'm about to pontificate upon."

    https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2022/aug/12/scientist-taken-own-life-health-workers-covid

    1. Fifth Horseman

      Re: Won't somebody think of the scientists?

      I down-voted you because what you posted, sad as it is, has absolutely nothing to do with the article. I wish I hadn't now.

      You are a pretty frequent commenter, and I have watched your posts over the last few months going from being apposite, intelligent and witty to angry, confrontational and a bit incoherent. Throw in your references to suicide, and I worry. If you are struggling, get some help. It *is* out there, although I know asking for it can be hard.

      I don't know you from Adam, and if I am speaking out of turn, my apologies, carry on as you were. In thirty plus years of taking part in Usenet groups and forums, I have seen too many good people fall by the wayside.

      1. Danny 2 Silver badge

        Re: Won't somebody think of the scientists?

        Well, thank you for your care and concern and apologies for worrying you. You are obviously a nice guy. I first came close to suicide when I was nine, next when I was thirty three, not since - but failure is always an option.

        It's a BOFH article, comedy essentially, I didn't know I could go off topic. Honestly though I do go off topic on serious articles all the time lately so your downvote is valid if misplaced,

        I've been on the internet since the mid eighties, haven't slipped off it for long, and I've rarely seen a good person fall. All too often they just disappear which is scarier. Everyone just forgets them. They're dead, they died! So do we all.

        I bore myself lately. I can't keep up with the tech in these articles, but I can tell you one thing - you don't have to regret downvoting me, you can always upvote me. Smiley face.

        Salman Rushdie was stabbed in the throat yesterday. Overrated author, but not his throat! I think we should make it illegal to stab any throat even your own. I don't like to think about it but if you ever have to stab me, shoulder blade, left shoulder preferably. Not my throat.

        1. M.V. Lipvig Silver badge
          Joke

          Re: Won't somebody think of the scientists?

          'Ow about me own throat, eh? Mind if I cut me own throat? I can let you have this bloody good sausage inna bun for 5 pence, sausage with named meat* 2 pence extra, mustard 10 pence extra, and that's cutting me own throat!

          *Spot! Here Spot! Come on boy, where ya at?

      2. Danny 2 Silver badge

        Re: Won't somebody think of the scientists?

        Taking the 5th, Horseman,

        Thankin you for 'apposite'. My new word of the day. I learned all of my grammar and most of my vocabulary in forums such as this. I constantly correct everyone else because that is how I learned, not my teachers. My worst mistakes were getting some words exactly the wrong way around. Bipartisan, prurient, and worse. I still can't say phenomena, still can't spell it either. Still get angry and embarrassed when folk point that out. Fe No Men Ah.

        I reread my original post that you downvoted, that nine others downvoted, and it still looks perfectly reasonable to me despite the disdain. A respected and worthy Scottish scientist is arguing against internet anonymity, and I disagree. I would argue for internet anonymity in all cases. Maybe I made that argument a bit jokey, or on the wrong thread, but honestly that is one of my better posts. I know, I ken...

        "What you write is both original and good, but what is good is not original, and what is original is not good" - and that's not even an accurate quote.

  13. peterh42

    Someone must have been at something stronger than a Pan Galactic Gargle Blaster as this is titled Episode 14 instead of 15

  14. chivo243 Silver badge
    Windows

    Management style fads!

    Oh, boy! I've seen my share of this team building malarky. The last one was a pip! Workplace wellness, no, not ripping Simon off here either.

    1. The Oncoming Scorn Silver badge
      Pint

      Re: Management style fads! - Something Different

      Actually I experienced a very unique mental health\de-stress event yesterday that is apparently done two or three times a year at my current location of employment.

      A local charity brings puppies on-site for those that want to interact with & pet them (With a view to prospective adoptions). Learning who the dog lovers were broke down barriers & caused interactions with people whose paths rarely cross.

      1. Blackjack Silver badge

        Re: Management style fads! - Something Different

        Petting Puppies and free pizza is how you improve the workplace environment.

        Unfortunately almost bo one does this.

        1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge
          Windows

          Re: Management style fads! - Something Different

          Our company does! Well, the free pizzas (or other food) every once in a while. Unfortunate;y, it also causes divisions between office based workers and those us out in the field who rarely if ever visit offices and don;t get any of the freebies.

          1. Caver_Dave
            Happy

            Re: Management style fads! - Something Different

            We are all remote workers, but luckily that includes a caring HR lady, who sends small cakes by courier to the whole UK staff.

          2. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Management style fads! - Something Different

            We occasionally get to see pictures of senior manglement visiting remote offices to hand out t-shirts/mug/chocolate advertising our latest product/service... we never get to see them

            We would just like a lick of paint around the building, toilets that flushed properly every time (as for the urinals!), all the dodgy light fittings upgraded (not just having to report them individually)... not asking for much...

      2. IGotOut Silver badge

        Re: Management style fads! - Something Different

        "Actually I experienced a very unique mental health\de-stress event yesterday"

        So did I, one of the women threatened to slit the throat of a shit stirrer (Moss Side lass, so don't think it was a light hearted bit of banter), a fork lift driver threatening to punch a jobsworth and a manager storming out.

        And that's just the ones I witnessed

        Ahh. Factory life in crazy hot weather.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Management style fads! - Something Different

          To be honest, I am wondering who introduced a student of very esoteric not to say illegal tastes to a Humanities academic in Manchester University, with the result being a paper concerning the "researcher" wanking over UK-illegal child pornography.

          That got published somehow in April, and the brown smelly stuff has just hit the fan now over on Twitter, so I'm now wondering just who set all this up.

          There is a strong possibility we have a BOFH present somewhere.

        2. The Oncoming Scorn Silver badge
          Holmes

          Re: Management style fads! - Something Different

          I've seen fights break out with meat cleavers between two workers of different ethnic groups in a slaughterhouse, they were surprisingly only suspended & lost Christmas\New Year statutory holiday pay & reinstated & the moment they encountered each other at the turnstiles to clock in on their return to work, they started again (HR had wisely decided to put them back on the same shift - Without knives fortunately this time).

          Another time we had a Canadian Govt Food Inspector, who would step onto the grated mezzanine floor\deck before descending to the main production floor, he was required to wash his hands & he would shake dry them, droplets of water would drip onto this poor female foreign worker below, usually running down her neck.

          She reached her tether, complained & the government worker was taken aside to be told, please stop doing that..

          Unfortunately for someone else as he stepped onto the elevated section of floor, before he even got his hands wet, a droplet of water from the roof, hit her square on the neck, she swiveled on the spot with the meat cutting tool she had in her hand & attempted (Fairly successfully) to disembowel his foot.

          1. Montreal Sean

            Re: Management style fads! - Something Different

            The company might want to look into a solution for the water dropping on workers below.

            Maybe a grated floor is not the best idea.

            1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

              Re: Management style fads! - Something Different

              ...or teach people the things they were supposed to learn as toddlers. Wash your hands properly, with soap, then dry them. This guy may have "washed" his hands, but I despair at the numbers of people who think "washing" their hands is a quick wipe under the running water then walk out shaking dirty water all over the place. Those drips may or may not have been contaminated water.

              1. Wellyboot Silver badge

                Re: Management style fads! - Something Different

                No 'May' about it, unless hands are sterile to start with!

                Adding plain water to skin bacteria just gives them a chance to hydrate and multiply.

              2. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

                Re: Management style fads! - Something Different

                If water's dropping from the roof they still need something better than a grating. If it isn't contaminated when it starts to fall it will be after it's passed through the grating.

          2. Wellyboot Silver badge
            Unhappy

            Re: Management style fads! - Something Different

            If the the roof is dripping onto the line workers it's also dripping onto the product.

            Condensation would be bad enough, rain water entering the building will contain a host of pollutants and micro bugs.

        3. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Management style fads! - Something Different

          "...one of the women threatened to slit the throat of a shit stirrer (Moss Side lass, so don't think it was a light hearted bit of banter"

          If the throat was still *whole*, at the end of the day, it *was* banter !!!

          Although, I personally would avoid dark alleys for a few months, if on the receiving end of the conversation !!!

          :)

      3. tezboyes

        Re: Management style fads! - Something Different

        And helps identify the sociopaths, the ones that either the puppies don't like, or those that think that pineapple on pizza is right.

        1. rototype
          Mushroom

          Re: Management style fads! - Something Different

          Nothing wrong with pineapple on pizza, so long as the ham and mushrooms are also there in the correct ratios as set out in holy doctrine. (Domino's recipe handbook).

  15. Boris the Cockroach Silver badge
    Devil

    You

    should always take a good book to these sort of meetings.

    Amongst my recommendations is

    "The Necronomicon discussed, with experiments for beginners" (get the light leather bound version, you can claim its human skin)

    Although nothing in there is as bad as when the new manglement fad is espoused by the bean counters and put forward as THE way forward at which point you propose the game favoured by your PFY "murder in the dark" and it is oh so very dark at the bottom of the lift shaft........

    Sleep well all

    1. Toni the terrible

      Re: You

      The New Management might agree with you, or put your skull on his display rack

  16. Evil Auditor Silver badge

    Bullshit jobs

    I'm in a bit of a bullshit job myself - advising people on how to do things they wouldn't need to do if it wasn't for people like me requiring them to do those things.

    But what a fscked up fsck! There actually are Internal Relationship Manager jobs out there! Can people in such jobs even qualify as sentient beings?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Bullshit jobs

      Yes, insofar that they surrender such title like a sentient being when ended with extrame prejudice and excessive creativity :)

    2. FBee

      Re: Bullshit jobs

      https://theanarchistlibrary.org/library/david-graeber-bullshit-jobs

    3. A.P. Veening Silver badge

      Re: Bullshit jobs

      Can people in such jobs even qualify as sentient beings?

      They can as they are getting paid for it, but I have the same question for the people hiring and paying them.

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Bullshit jobs

      You know they dentists are failed doctors and I have said that PAT testers are failed electriticians - maybe these people are failed HR people?

      1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

        Re: Bullshit jobs

        "maybe these people are failed HR people?"

        Is that even possible?

        1. 43300

          Re: Bullshit jobs

          Yes - they become EDI Managers.

      2. tezboyes

        Re: Bullshit jobs

        "PAT testers" ?

        1. A K Stiles

          Re: Bullshit jobs

          Portable Appliance Testing - is this fan/printer/screen/set of fairy lights likely to electrocute someone or set fire to the drying lump of wood it's been draped over for one month in twelve, after having been unceremoniously bundled into a gordian knot.

  17. Stoneshop Silver badge
    Devil

    Internal relationship manager

    So it's not just OK now to start dating a COTAS[0], there will be a company-paid bod to deal with all the objections and administrative hoohah that HR would be throwing at you?

    [0] Cow-orker Of The Appropriate Sex.

    1. JR
      Trollface

      Re: Internal relationship manager

      Would you need to date a COTAS if HR are throwing administrative hoohas at you?

      1. J. Cook Silver badge
        Coffee/keyboard

        Re: Internal relationship manager

        It'd certainly raise a few interesting... questions.

        (what did you think I was going to say?)

        One does wonder what it'd like working for an adult movie company, though...

      2. Stoneshop Silver badge

        Re: Internal relationship manager

        Administrative hoohas only provide pleasure to the one issuing them.

        1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge
          Gimp

          Re: Internal relationship manager

          Never heard of BDSM? It's enlightening (and sometime horrifying, as well as everything in between) to find out what gets some peoples rocks off ;-)

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Internal relationship manager

            It can also present some interesting engineering challenges as well.

            Remember kids- Negotiation, trust and consent are the pillars to be tied to, in equal stature.

    2. M.V. Lipvig Silver badge

      Re: Internal relationship manager

      "[0] Cow-orker Of The Appropriate Sex."

      That would be interesting to see in the US, seeing as the party currently in power has recognized some 53 different genders.

  18. Strahd Ivarius Silver badge
    Pint

    We like to spend time with people of other departments

    Especially the ones selling our corporate brands of hard liquor...

  19. Pirate Dave Silver badge

    ""A Masters in Workplace Social Engineering!," the PFY echos, in the tone of wonder. "

    It's gems like this that make the subscription to El Reg worth every penny.

  20. CuChulainn Silver badge

    Nail On The Head

    and the accountants are represented by an Olympic-level stick-in-the-mud

    I always wonder how they decide who that is, because any of them could fill the role. They must draw straws or something, like in 'Armageddon'.

    1. Stoneshop Silver badge

      Olympic-level stick-in-the-mud

      That's done in a competition, like 400m hurdles[0] or javelin[1]. For Stick In The Mud the competitor gets placed in a Standard Olympic Mud Puddle to a prescribed depth, then the opposing team tries to pull him out. The number of pullers starts with one, and is increased until the stickler is extracted; the one who needs the larger number of pullers win that round.

      [0] but now with stacks of paper

      [1] with an oversze fountain pen, and it's not just for greatest distance, but there's an inkwell you have to try to get the pen into.

  21. plrndl
    Pint

    Workplace Relationships

    In my experience, the best interdepartmental workplace relationships occured when the entire workforce was united in a hatred of the senior management. Even the marketing people were part of the Friday night session in the local pub.

  22. dvd

    I've experienced the BOFH dynamic from both sides. For years I was in s/w development, then support, and I grew a hatred of users.

    Then I threw it all in to be a structures inspector on the trunk road network; an it heavy job but I didn't have God powers over the it any more. I grew to hate the it department.

    Then the it department introduced an it problem busting initiative where they went round the offices talking to users and trying to fix problems on the spot.

    They fixed a lot of irritations (eg you've got wacom hardware; obviously you need the drivers and not the Microsoft generic crap; we'll sort out the politics later) and got a lot of brownie points and good feelings.

    I realised that in a lot of cases the problem was middle management fearful of stuff they didn't understand, not the individuals who in most cases were just trying to do a good job (on both sides).

  23. Sampler

    Good start

    I would like to see one day Simon meet is own Moriarty. A seemingly standard bureaucrat but underneath we find like sees like, culminating in an attempt to introduce him to an open window with a skip of glass shards below only for him to make an enigmatic escape to battle another day.

    The start of this felt like it could be building in this direction, and although ends well (as always) it would be nice to get a recurring provocateur of similar standard to Simon, to truly challenge him.

    1. Hazmoid

      Re: Good start

      I believe this happened a few years ago when there was a female sales manager who managed to get Simon's managers to sign up for whatever waffle of the day she was selling. I believe she outwitted Simon a few times, with the end result being that she was promoted out of dealing with anything within BOFH's purview , thus saving Simon from having to resort to the carpet roll and quicklime.

    2. Jesthar

      Re: Good start

      There was an Arty Murray years ago, in the last episode before the BOFH moved to El Reg: http://www.bofharchive.com/1999/bastard99-27.html

      His fate was discussed in the first El Reg episode: https://www.theregister.com/2000/05/09/bofh_returns_from_the_dead/

      :)

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