World Class…or World ASS?



WORLD CLASS companies provide their staff with spacious state-of-the art buildings to work in.

WORLD ASS companies house their employees in rickety old buildings with leaky roofs, that are infested with mice and other critters (Ach der lieber!  Raccoons!)


WORLD CLASS companies have subsidized cafeterias, allowing their staff to buy high-quality meals at a discount.

WORLD ASS companies have cafeterias run by greedy food-service providers that gouge the staff, sometimes charging 50-100% more than grocery store prices.


WORLD CLASS companies regularly hold technical seminars that everyone is encouraged to attend.  It’s considered part of your professional development.

WORLD ASS companies only hold such seminars during lunchtime or after work.   If you want to learn, do it on your own time.


WORLD CLASS companies will fairly award you a pay raise based on your actual performance.

WORLD ASS companies will give everyone basically the same pay raise, regardless of how well they did.


WORLD CLASS companies routinely distribute company trinkets (golf balls, T-shirts, baseball caps, etc.) as freebies.

WORLD ASS companies will allow you to buy this stuff, at a reasonable price.


WORLD CLASS companies encourage charity work, sometimes even awarding paid sabbaticals so employees can take time off work to volunteer.

WORLD ASS companies will hold a charity event during work hours, but tell their staff if they want to participate, they must do it on their own time.


WORD CLASS companies will increase someones’ salary if they’re promoted to a position of increased responsibility.

WORLD ASS companies will promote someone but pay them the same.   In fact, if the employee dares complain, they’ll scold and try to intimidate him.


WORLD CLASS companies provide free coffee, and even donuts.

WORLD ASS companies make their employees pay for and brew their own.  And donuts?…What are THOSE?


WORLD CLASS companies have joined the 21st century and allow telecommuting.

WORLD ASS companies don’t trust you to work from home.  But they’ll lecture you on carpooling and tell you to save the planet.


WORLD CLASS companies have ample parking spaces.

WORLD ASS companies make you walk half a mile to your office (if you’re even lucky enough to even park that close!)


WORLD CLASS companies will provide adequate snow removal from all the parking lots and building entrances.

WORLD ASS companies will scold you if you slip and fall on the ice.   Because it’s YOUR fault.


WORLD CLASS companies regularly hold events during work hours like golf tournaments, barbecues, or paint ball.  It’s considered part of your job, as “team building”.

WORLD ASS companies also hold “team building” events, but you must do it on your own time, or use up your vacation hours.


WORLD CLASS companies respect their engineers and PhDs, recognizing them as key members of the team.

WORLD ASS companies treat their technical staff like 2nd-class citizens.  It’s HR and the administrators that run the place.


WORLD CLASS companies will quickly get rid of any office bullies or toxic supervisors.

WORLD ASS companies will typically  promote these people to senior management.


WORLD CLASS companies are exceeding rare.

WORLD ASS companies are sadly the norm.


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29 Comments on “World Class…or World ASS?”

  1. Brett Legree Says:

    There are some things money can’t buy.

    (Like all of the stuff listed above…)

    For everything else, there’s Asstercard.

  2. Friar Says:


    I think my Asstercard is almost maxed out right now.

  3. Brett Legree Says:


    Don’t worry, they’ll give you more credit, you know how that place works 😉

  4. Friar Says:

    Oh, this was just a “generic” list of the differences between good companies and bad.
    …NOT that this necessarily had ANYTHING to do where I work right now.

    ….No. NOT AT ALL. 😉

  5. Back in the day when I was a technical writer for a small software start-up company, we went on a field trip to the Google offices. Actually, maybe it was Yahoo. In any case, talk about world class cafeteria… forget subsidized. Everything was free! And delicious!

  6. Kelly Says:

    Okay, who let Friar out without his anti-Dooceing meds?


    I LMAO, but whoo-hoo it’s such a shift from the Cleansing H20… I guess I missed some steps in between, eh?

    That’s what trying to stay away from the computer for a week or so does. You miss The Deep Friar’s deep mood swings.

    How long before AssterCard comes and howls about your charming sendup?

    I’m still laughing at these completely generic, non-Factory-specific stereotypes. Buy my own company swag if I worked for someone like this? I think NOT. Eek!



    P.S. When I read your posts, the neighbors know I’m home…

  7. Amy Derby Says:

    This made me laugh SO HARD. And made me so grateful I escaped. 😉

  8. Brett Legree Says:

    Yet more proof that “the truth is stranger than fiction”.

    As Friar and I are so fond of saying to the non-believers who think we are pulling a fast one –

    You can’t make this shit up.

  9. Friar Says:


    Actually, I was thinking exactly about Google when I thought of World Class working environments. I watched a video about in on Youtube…that place is so FAR ahead of the rest of the pack, it’s not funny.

    Free food? WOW!!

    I’d be happy with just free coffee!

    Yep….quite different for my blog post earlier this week, eh? The one thing I like about my blog, is my readers never know what I’m going to write next (because I don’t, either!)

    But like I said…these are generic rants…about companies in GENERAL! It coiuld be ANY workplace 😉

    But what if..? … buying trinkets was such a complicated process, that it involved a TRAINING session to learn how to fill in the paperwork for the orders? (And it was held during lunch…again..on your own time? )

    Would THAT maximize your “Customer Experience”, and make you want to buy even MORE swag?

    (Just askin’…) 😉

  10. Friar Says:

    Glad SOME of us got out, like you did!

    We’ll all escape one day….or maybe we’ll find that “World Class” company, and there wont’ be any need to escape! 🙂

    I’ve been an engineer for 21 years now, and it still boggles my mind, what occurs in some companies.

    You’re right…I couldn’t make this shit up if I tried…people would say I was exagerrating.

    I’d like to know the “Top Ten Tips” the Life-Coach Wannabees would suggest to us, if they were stuck in a World Ass Compnay.

  11. Brett Legree Says:

    Yes, Google gets free food (three meals a day, fresh, organic, free-range etc.) plus a 24-hour snack room, whatever you want.

    I believe they will also do your laundry for you if you bring it to work (I read that somewhere).

    Plus they encourage you to spend 20 percent of your time working on “your own projects” with the idea being you might come up with something cool for them, if you are allowed to tinker. That’s how some of the Google applications came about.

  12. Kelly Says:


    Wait, if you’re not making this stuff up, then… it’s not generic and non-Factory-specific… uh-oh. Keep that nom de plume.

    The training session. UN-BE-LIEVABLE.


    Until later,


  13. Friar Says:


    Free FOOD? Awwww….man! I almost don’t wanna know how good Google is, it just further emphasizes how BAD some other companies are.

    Like I said to Melissa, I’d be happy with just FREE COFFEE. (That alone would save me quite a bit of $$$ a year….probably even more for you (You always had the biggest tab in the coffee pool) 😉


    Yep. I aint’ kidding. A training session during lunch hour so people can learn to how order company swag.

    AHAHAHAH! That IS pretty funny, when you think of it from an outside point of view. 😀

  14. Betsy Says:

    You ARE reading Cali and Jody, aren’t you?

  15. Brett Legree Says:


    I saw them in a link from a Tim Ferriss blog post – ROWE is totally awesome and how I would set up my company.

    ROWE is also diametrically opposed to my current workplace… *sigh*

  16. Friar Says:


    (???). Who are Cali and Jody? Do you have the link?

    Who is Tim Feriss?

    (Geez, I’m so out of it! )

  17. Brett Legree Says:

    Cali & Jody created ROWE, aka Results-Only Work Environment. As long as the work gets done, on time on budget, your time is yours. There is no late arrival, or early departure. Judy Fudge, just do your fracking job.

    It really works, many good corps are starting to use it.

    Tim Ferriss is the author of The Four Hour Workweek, which is a nice little book about living your life your way on your terms. I have it, and it is worth the read. I mean, he even says in it that the idea isn’t that everyone can work 4 hours a week. But a lot of what is in there makes sense.

  18. Karen Swim Says:

    Friar, sadly the world class companies do not outnumber the others and sometimes world class companies sneak in some of those other practices. It’s truly insane that companies still don’t understand that when you value your people, and treat them with respect it is good for the bottom line.

  19. Beth Partin Says:


    Some companies are both at once! My husband’s company has free lunch Fridays and gives stuff away (usually stuff we don’t really want), but this year, for the second year in a row, it made all employees take vacation days by the end of the year, whether they wanted to or not.

    My husband is going to have surgery in January, so he would rather have saved for that. But noooooooooooooooo! We must get the vacation days off our bottom line!

    Really pisses me off.

  20. Friar Says:

    Thanks for the links. I had to “approve” of your comment, but WordPress let it go through.

    I’d like to see a revolution, where employees take back companies and demand to be treated like human beings. The problem (at least what I see) is that people are too much like sheep, they don’t complain when they’re getting unfairly kicked in the butt.

    Instead, they bend over and say “Please, sir may I have another?”. They’ve got us trained to think “Well, consider yourself lucky we’re giving you a job!”.

    That dosen’t cut it for me anymore. We should think the other way around..and say “Consider yourselves lucky to have US as employees”.

    Oh, that sounds AWFUL! Doing one “World Class” thing, while still behaving “World Ass”, still makes a company “World Ass”, in my books.

    If your husband can afford to take the time off, and not jeopardize his job, I’d get a note from the doctor and milk the post-surgery sick leave as long as possible.

    Chances are, it’ll probably still not be enough time off. (I’ve had a few surgeries, and it takes a lot longer to get back to 100% than you realize).

  21. Karen JL Says:

    Just to play devil’s advocate here, but it can work the other way around too.

    Places can give their employees all sorts of freedom and perks and they will still bitch and complain. They don’t get the work done and want more money (that they haven’t earned), break their contracts and basically just act like they’re ‘owed’ big time.

    Some people are always trying to ‘stick it’ to their employer no matter what. That’s not right either.

    Not everyone has the character of the folks who hang out here. There are some lazy, ungrateful ‘world-ass’ individuals out there too.

    Just sayin’. 🙂

  22. Whaaaaaaaaa…I was already totally depressed, and had to come home and curl up in bed, hoping the world would miracously become a better place tomorrow. Only to crawl out of bed to try and cheer up with some blogs, only to read this. My work life PERSONIFIED!

    Note to self: NEVER read Friar’s post in an attempt to cheer up.

  23. Friar Says:

    @Karen JL

    Well…to play Devils advocate right back…I think if you have good leadership, if you give people lots of freedom, the majority wont’ “stick it to the man”, and they wont’ take advantage of the situation.

    Years ago (in a former life). I worked for an excellent leader. He was the director of our group, and I saw what good leadership could do…people were willing to put in that extra effort at work..not because they wanted extra pay or to suck up to the boss…but because they respected him and there was a level of professional pride in doing your best for the team.

    I agree…there’s Word-Ass employees, but those are the minority, and you correct the problem by by firing their sorry ass.

    But if an entire company is “World Ass”, it’s ingrained in the culture, …it’s a huge living World-Ass Borg Collective that feeds on itself. How do you fire THAT?


    Wow…lookit the 180 degree opposite reaction you had to Kelly’s and Amy’s!

    Mabe you’re just having an off day. Usually I cheer you up.

    Check your limit. Mabye your ASStercard is maxed out. 😉

  24. Karen JL Says:

    @ Friar – Oh, I hear you. And I’m sure that’s *totally* true in the your world.

    Artist-land can be a little flakier, that’s all. 😉 I think it’s a ‘youth thing’ too.

    I still don’t know how you do it. I’d die in one of those World-Ass places!

  25. Friar Says:

    How do I do it? What’s FUNNY, is that I deal with everything by doing my “Artist Land” stuff…after hours! 🙂

    Though if I became an Artist-Land person full time, maybe I’d get flakey too (After all, don’t you have to be a tortured intellectual to join their ranks?)

  26. Beth Partin Says:

    Friar, thanks! He’s planning to take a month off, but he usually heals pretty quickly.

  27. Neil Says:

    Amy -> You escaped? I’m jealous!

    Friar -> Great list, I’m not sure which type of company I work for. They score good points on some, poor on others. Such is life I suppose! Thanks for the laugh!

  28. Friar Says:


    Hope things go well with your husband.
    As a veteran of multiple surgeries…yes, I know it’s not the most fun thing in the world. But I found a small consolation prize, in the extended time off work. That was SOOOO sweet! (even if I WAS off sick). 😉

    Oh, you’re on the borderline of World Class/Wordl Ass, then. Hmmm…if it’s that close, then I’d say it was leaning towards Ass! 😉

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