Please, PLEASE tell us he's not in sales (or IT)

This company adopts one of those employee incentive programs where, if you come up with an idea that increases revenue, you'll get a percentage of the increased profits for the next year, reports an IT pilot fish on the inside.

"At our next meeting, everyone went around the table with their ideas," fish says. "Barney's was this: 'We will mark all of our products up by 100 percent, then we will offer our customers a 50 percent discount. That way they'll think they're getting a deal when they will be buying things for 50 percent more than their original price.'

"I said, 'So you want to mark a $1 item up 100 percent to $2, then give a 50 percent discount dropping the price to $1? The price is staying the same.'

"Barney tried to explain that he worked it out the night before and that we'll be selling items for more than their original price, and if our team just programs it, we'll see for ourselves.

"Everyone else at the table who can do simple math was either rolling their eyes or staring in slack-jawed amazement. Even the head of accounting tried to explain that it zeroed out in the end. Barney insisted that it worked.

"Finally, someone else asked, 'Won't the customers notice when our prices suddenly increase?'

"The system was never implemented, and Barney still holds a grudge against me for sabotaging his idea.

"And I never did find out what he was going to do with his percentage of the zero increase in profits."

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