A look at the employee handbook

Feb 11 2008 by Print This Article

One of businesses' necessities is the "employee handbook." These are devious little devices that are a pain to create and often looked upon by employees as some kind of catch-all bible. Fastcompany.com

takes a satirical look at this, with some humorous submissions from readers.

Take, for example, "Chapter 32: Workplace Swearing" written by an anonymous author. Things like this really do exist in employee handbooks, although this one takes a slightly twisted bent toward the topic.

The author writes, "Damn, Hell: The most innocuous expletives. Spicing informal banter -- or formal presentations, among sales reps -- with a strategic "damn!" or "hell!" can provide vivid punctuation. (E.g., "How the hell are we going to hide this $3 billion shortfall?") The instruction, "Go to hell!" is, however, ordinarily not recommended."

Also included are the proper office uses of "bastard" and "bitch." According to the writer, both of them are generally considered acceptable in the office although the word "bitch" should be avoided in mixed gender situations. The word "bastard" according to the author, should always be used when discussing Texans.

There are also tips for avoiding the use of the "F-word" and the "C-word." The author states that the second of those two is the worst of the lot and should be avoided at all costs.

The final tip states, "French Words: In some instances, employees may seek to demonstrate their sophistication by employing such expressions as merde or putain. You are advised that the pretentious use of such mals mots may result in a noticeable lack of career advancement. This applies as well to employees who actually may be French."

So, if updating your company's employee handbook is getting you down, it might do you some good to visit Fastcompany's website. It may not help you actually write your book, but it will at least provide you with a laugh.