Fans of The Office love to hate Michael Scott. Played pitch perfectly by Steve Carell, Scott is everything everyone hates about bosses: bumbling, boundary-crossing, crass, insensitive, and awkward. Though the character developed over the years and became almost likable, Scott will always embody everyone’s idea of the worst boss in the world. The kind of guy that makes you want build a fort inside your cubicle or turn over the open plan table, or whatever style of office you’re spending your 9 to 5 in.
Part of the reason The Office, and Michael Scott in particular, are so popular is that the whole world feels all too familiar. You’ve probably had a boss like him, and co-workers like Dwight Schrute. Without the beet farm part. Reddit user u/Multicalibrador asked the followers of AskReddit to share some stories to illustrate Scott’s universality, asking “What’s the most Michael Scott-ish thing your boss ever did?” They definitely delivered.
1. The Cartographer
I handed him an aerial image I had printed. He told me I needed to reprint it and rotate it 180. I walked to my cubicle, waited a minute, handed it back to him right side up. His reply, “Perfect.”
1. The Secret Santa
My old boss was amazing. He actually bought me and my coworker iPods because we did such a great job on a project. A couple weeks later, he had us watch an episode of The Office during work because it was close to Christmas and he thought we deserved a break – and he was a huge fan. It was the Christmas episode one where Michael gave an iPod for Secret Santa. We both looked at our boss, and he was like “hey, I gave both of you iPods!”
3. The Party Planner
It was this guy’s last day with the company, and the managers brought in a cake for everyone to share. A very nice farewell gesture.
Except he wasn’t moving to a new city or leaving the company for a new job. He had gotten fired. The managers literally fired this guy, then called everyone into the kitchen and said “Okay, today is Steve’s last day with the company, let’s have some cake!” Most oblivious, socially awkward, tone deaf moment imaginable.
4. The Great Equalizer
My boss makes me walk 2 meters behind him because I’m tall and he’s short.
5. The Dine And Dash
After a successful project, owner of the company invited everyone out to lunch (about 12 employees) at a nearby restaurant by the office. Little did she know, the place was very expensive, so she bounces early before the check comes, stating that she had a client call. She gives us money to pay for her meal and takes off, leaving the rest of us to figure out the check. It also turns out she didn’t give us enough money to pay for her potion of the check so someone had to throw in a few extra bucks to cover that.
6. The Housekeeper
My boss put candles in his dishwasher to clean them and they ended up melting and distributing a thin layer of wax over everything
7. The Morale Booster
Mandatory Staff Appreciation Day.
It fell on my day off, and I had to come in, to participate in the team-building activities that were scheduled. It went from 7am to 7pm, which was longer than a normal shift. That was my only day off that week.
8. The Timekeeper
I used to work graveyards. Once a month I was required to come in on Friday afternoon for a staff meeting at 1PM. This was essentially forcing me to come into work at 3AM for regular people, just so I “felt included in the warehouse”. Also, since I did not work Friday/Saturday nights, it was essentially having me show up on a normal persons Saturday at 3AM. She had the gall to yell at me for showing up in my pajamas, and not proper warehouse clothing….
9. The Thief
A few coworkers and I competed in a local Office-themed trivia contest. We came in second place, and one of the prizes was a “World’s Best Boss” mug. We brought it into work and displayed it proudly like a trophy in one of our offices. My boss–who was not involved in the contest, has never seen The Office, is not friends with or well-liked by any of us, and is a huge idiot–saw the mug in someone else’s office and just took it. None of us could figure out where it had gone until we saw her drinking out of it.
10. The Prankster
We had mice. Boss man was terrified of mice and a total skinflint who didn’t want to pay for an exterminator. His big idea (I shit you not!) was to give me cotton to put in my ears and a blow horn. He then opened the back door, closed all other doors in the little shop, and I had to attempt to herd mice out of the store with a fucking air horn, with cotton balls sticking out of my ears. I tried to explain why it wouldn’t work, but he essentially told me not to worry my pretty little head over it, and that was my entire afternoon. Most ridiculous shit I’ve ever done at a job ever before, and ever since.
11. The Risk Taker
I had a boss who got a promotion to senior manager. The very next day he pulled into the parking lot with a BMW 1-Series. No one on my team even knew they made a 1 series (cheapest possible BMW/badge car). He gets out wearing a BMW polo and a white BMW hat. He offered to take me to lunch in it. He jumps on the highway, adjusts his BMW hat and says to me, “I don’t exactly do 60 in this thing!” does a little triumphant laughter and starts going 80. There was a cop on the bridge above us. We were immediately pulled over. I will never forget the look of defeat on his face.
12. The Scare
We legitimately had to lay off 4 people last year, and management decided to wait until the day before the Halloween office party to do it. No joke. It was like the Halloween episode in real life.
13. The Daddy
My boss took us to a Farmer’s Market for an office lunch outing, and when me and my two coworkers walked over to his table after having browsed and eaten, he told his attorney friend he was with, “They don’t like to be too far from daddy.”
14. The Perfect Mix Up
My boss would confuse the word fillet and fellate. I about lost it a few times when he came up and said “If we don’t get XXX done by the deadline they’re going to fellate us in the next meeting!”
15. The Impersonator
Wore a tuxedo at work lunch to give out superlative type rewards. The lunch was at a local sports bar.
He had never seen The Office.
16. The Fiber King
This is a story from my brother. He works at a credit union and one morning around 10 his boss walks out of his office asking if anyone wants the other half he cut off of this huge bran muffin he had for breakfast. Everyone there said they were fine and the boss went back into his office. Later, around 12, an employee comes in for her shift with a box full of doughnuts to share with the office. Everyone came up and took one thanking the employee for bringing in the treat. The boss was visibly mad that everyone went for the doughnuts and no one wanted his half of his bran muffin. He was just a big grump for the rest of the day.
17. The Lonely Heart
made someone come with him to get his shoes shined because he wanted someone to talk to.
except, we all wore sneakers, so the lucky guy got to just stand there and wait while he got his shoeshine.
18. The Opportunist
He was approved to buy a furniture set for out new office waiting room he bought one then took it home and brought his old living room furniture for the office to use. Then when they shut that office down a year later he took his old furniture back instead of letting them take it to the new office location.
19. The Competitor
Canceled work for the afternoon so their team could all play a new board game they bought. Called it a “team building exercise”.
Then when they started losing, started berating and yelling at junior employees for not ‘playing fair’ or ‘being too competitive’, etc.
20. The Nickname Guy
My manager tried to get the nickname he had chosen for himself to catch on. The nickname in question was “Hollywood”. He would introduce himself to new workers/visitors/etc. as Hollywood, one of us would say “no one calls him that” and he would just be like “well…. everyone calls me that.”
21. The Rankest
Had us rank each other in order from 1 to 20, of who is the overall hardest worker. Told us no one would know the results.
Next day, reads the order out loud. The people ranked 15-20 now knew what everyone thought of them. Killed staff morale.
22. The Genius
On my last day at a sucky catering job, my boss gave me an ultimatum: work the rest of the night, or record me embarrassingly doing the Dougie and post it on snapchat. Shortest shift I ever worked.
Honestly, that last one isn’t too bad. Because no one is as bad as Michael Scott, except maybe Pam Beasley.