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Home > Blog > The Dilbert in all of us
Out of Our Minds
Wednesday, May 03, 2006 10:54 PM
The Dilbert in all of us
Kevin Salwen on Passionate Work

When Scott Adams was working for Pacific Bell in the 1980s, he dreamed of a career filled with creativity. So he began drawing "Dilbert" as a way to reflect on his 17 years as a cubicle dweller. For five years, he drew the strip as a moonlighting gig as he continued to toil at the phone-service provider.

He saw the titanic shifts in the phone industry and knew his job was on the line -- even offering a graceful exit. But when he was downsized in 1995, it was still a shock, despite his fallback. “It was strangely unsettling,” he recalls. “You end up identifying yourself with where you go to work. This concept of just sitting home in your pajamas and writing things didn’t really seem like work.”

In the end, he credits his business acumen -- he has an MBA from UC-Berkeley -- more than his cartoon ability for his success. His story is an inspiring one; you can read Worthwhile's interview with Adams here.

1 comment

Jerrome - 5/4/2006 12:03:31 PM
His use of technology in gathering feedback and additional distribution sounds like it was truly groundbreaking for the time -- hell, maybe even groundbreaking for NOW, given how little companies really are willing to listen to all customers (as opposed to a select focused group).


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