Memo to all: watch your ass
Saturday 20 February 1999
This is the latest advice to American executives whose career paths lead across the pond to Britain, a country with cold weather and warm beer, where cowboys are "dodgy builders" and Indians "wear turbans, not feathers".
It caused amusement this week at the American oil company Amoco when, in the form of a 50-point checklist entitled "Things you need to know about working for a British company", it was passed among staff.
"Power lunches and working breakfasts will be replaced by elevenses and tea-breaks", it warns, adding: "Offices will be 12ft x 6ft for executives; 8ft x 5ft for senior managers. Everyone else will be shoehorned into a small open-plan space. It will not be air-conditioned."
Taking a swipe at the Great British workplace - in a manner that could have been written by a Brit - the list warns: "The company jet will be replaced by the company bike. Company cars will be similar in size to a shoebox and will have an engine with the power output of a hairdryer. Food portions in the company canteen will be large enough to feed a small pygmy. The restaurant will serve spotted dick at least twice a week."
Bemused executives are told: "Giggling uncontrollably at toilet humour and words like `bottom' is normal behaviour. And even when talking about dancing, seabirds, tobacco or hairdos, never use the word `shag'."
There is the usual complaint that "cold drinks will be served with a maximum of two ice-cubes, which will not be renewable. Cold drinks will not be renewable either."
Most complaints will ring true to the British worker - "The company's social club's sports activities will be cricket, darts and football hooliganism."
Three other pieces of advice, however, may not. Point number 46 states: "Nobody likes Fergie. At all." No 47: "Nobody ever did." No 48: "Or ever will."
Latching on to a typical preoccupation with un-PC office practices, the advice adds: "The company newspaper will have a photo of a semi-naked woman on page three and lots of juicy articles about who [sic] the receptionist is bonking."
- 1 Autistic adults could take pure MDMA to 'reduce social anxiety'
- 2 Natalie Portman tells Harvard graduates: 'Accept your lack of knowledge'
- 3 Before you complain about your GP, this is what you need to know about actually doing the job
- 4 Father of 12 accused of raping, beating, starving and abusing his own children in US 'cult'
- 5 Charlie Charlie Challenge explained: not a Mexican demon being summoned — it's gravity
People are criticising Fifa World Cup sponsors with corrupt corporate logos
Natalie Portman tells Harvard graduates: 'Accept your lack of knowledge'
University league tables: Best universities for teaching standards rank Oxford, Cambridge and Coventry among top 20
Fifa corruption live: Sebb Blatter warns 'more bad news may follow' as he clings to power
Skull found in Spain could be the world's first-ever murder victim
EU referendum: David Cameron's rules are a 'democratic disgrace', says French-born Scottish politician set to be denied a vote
The day that Britain resigned as a global power
SNP fury as HS2 finds 'no business case' for taking fast train service to Scotland
Australian man punched in the face for defending Muslim women from abuse on train
A nation of inequality: How the UK is failing to feed its most vulnerable people
EU referendum: David Cameron to deny EU migrants and under-18s the chance to vote
Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: One of the South East's fastest growing full s...
£35-40k (DOE) + Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking a Marketing Communicati...
£30000 - £32000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Estimating, preparation of tech...
£14000 - £17000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: You will work as part of a smal...