In Praise of Despair, Inc.

Most people in corporate America are familiar with Successories.  If you haven’t heard them called “Successories,” I’m sure you know them by sight.  Successories sells mugs, pencils, and pads, but is best known for posters which say things like:

ATTITUDE:  A positive attitude is a powerful force — it can’t be stopped!! (photo = waterfall)

SUCCESS:  Some people dream of success . . . while others wake up and work hard at it.  (photo = early morning golf green with footprints in dew)

TEAMWORK:  Coming together is a beginning… Keeping together is progress… Working together is a success. (photo = Blue Angels)

My favorite poster is one of a child that looks strangely like my son and I both did at that age.   It reads:

A hundred years from now it will not matter what my bank account was, the sort of house I lived in, or the kind of car I drove…but the world may be different because I was important in the life of a child.

So with these sometimes sappy and sometimes motivational posters out there, along comes Despair, Inc. which turns Successories on its proverbial ear and provides a humorous turn to these posters.  Instead of platitudes like those I wrote above, Despair looks at things a bit differently.  It’s posters, called “demotivators” put forward statements such as:

APATHY:  If we don’t take care of the customer, maybe they’ll stop bugging us (photo = telephone)

CONSULTING:  If you’re not a part of the solution,there’s good money to be made in prolonging the problem (photo = handshake)

IDIOCY:  Never underestimate the power of stupid people in large groups (photo = skydivers falling in a circle)

Here are three of my favorites:

There’s a lot more where these came from.  If you’ve got the guts in your office (I don’t!), they are spectacular.

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