"Attention, Employees! Be happy. The CEO is your friend. Trust no one."
"Hello, Employee. Welcome to Delta Corporation. Your Employee Number is #35801."
"Robot #4823! Deposit New Employee Agreements pallet for Employee #35801 behind the red line and return forklift to Central Maintenence."
"Employee #35801! Sign here to confirm receipt and acceptance of New Employee Agreements. Confirmed. Signature verified. Remove your copies of New Employee Agreements. 'Too heavy' is not an valid answer. Refusal to remove your copies violates Section 384 of New Employee Agreements and subjects you to termination."
"Robot #4824! Move the remains of Employee #35801 to the Food Enrichment Center for processing."
Never sign anything without reading it.
"Employee #35802! This area is zoned for Document Distribution, not Document Processing. Processing documents in an area not zoned for processing is not allowed. Report to your Job Station. Refusal to report to your Job Station within a timely matter is a violation!"
"Robot #4825! Remove Employee #35802's clothes and personal affects and submit them to the Logistics Department for reissue."
"Robot #4826! Move Employee #35802 to the Processing Safety Testing Facility for evaluation."
Always take it home and mull it over in a stress-free environment before you sign anything.
"Employee #35803! You are incorrect; this document has not been altered. The CEO is your friend. Is your memory subsystem malfunctioning?"
"Lack of access to necessary information is a defect. Defects must be repaired. Report to the Central Maintenance for replacement of defective organ."
Always get a copy of anything you sign.
"Employee #35804! 'Not being born yet' and 'only being hired this morning' are not valid reasons for failure to report to your Job Station 9,126 solar days ago."
"Failure to report to your Job Station is inefficient. The CEO needs you to be efficient. The CEO is your friend. Refusal to correct inefficiency upon discovery is disloyal. Report to the Loyalty Department for re-education."
Always date anything you sign. Even if there isn't a place, write the date in.
"Employee #35805! First offers are always fair. The CEO is your friend."
"Report to the Biological Section for flesh removal per your contract."
Always delay signing until the last possible moment. Maybe they get nervous and give you a better deal.
"This food requisition form does not have the required signatures. Wait here."
"Employee #35806! Death is not an acceptable response to lack of food resources."
Always try to be the last person to sign. Let them commit first. Then, maybe you commit, maybe you don't.
"Disarm your weapon, disembark your tank and report to Central Filing."
"Employee #35807! Your tank authorization form is invalid. The CEO does not make mistakes. The CEO is your friend."
"Robot #4827! Invalid authorization forms are used by traitors. Employee #35807 is a traitor. Escort Employee #35807 to the Traitor Reorientation Shower Area."
Always try to avoid signing anything. Maybe they'll forget and you'll get what you want anyway.
"Employee #35808! You've been promoted! The CEO sent this contract for you to sign. Yes, silver is acceptable rather than copper. Sign here."
"Congratulations! Report to the Global Payroll Complex to collect your silver safety pin in exchange for your next 5,000 solar years of service. Thank you!"
Always try to write the document. That way, you control the starting point for negotiations.
"Welcome to Delta Corporation. Be happy. Enjoy your work."
* * * * *
Delta Corporation and the marketplace are very much alike. Be cautious.
A small but significant advantage is gained by the person who reads the document. Another small but significant advantage is gained by he who does not rush to sign. Yet another by having an original copy. And another by being able to claim that the signing date invalidates part or all of the document. And a few more by delay and avoidance. A big one by writing the document itself.
Seize the advantage. Don't let the robo-lawyers from Delta Corporation seize the advantage from you. Protect yourself, as an employee, as a small business owner and as a citizen.
Do business, get things done, sign first if you have to. Get what you need. But, know the difference between documents that you are forced to sign to get or keep your job and documents that give you a real, tangible benefit.
Trust no one.
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E-mail Dan Howard about this article