These are from the book “Who Moved My Cheese?” by Spencer Johnson, M.D.
- Change Happens
- They Keep Moving the Cheese
- Anticipate Change
- Get Ready for the Cheese to Move
- Monitor Change
- Smell the Cheese Often So You Know When It Is Getting Old
- Adapt to Change Quickly
- The Quicker You Let Go of Old Cheese, The Sooner You Can Enjoy New Cheese
- Move with the Cheese
- Enjoy Change!
- Savor the Adventure and the Taste of New Cheese!
- Be Ready to Quickly Change Again and Again
- They Keep Moving the Cheese
These are some real-life cheese rules.
- Never give your old cheese away in anticipation of finding new cheese.
- Never turn down cheese offered to you, even if you already have too much.
- Never turn down cheese offered to you just because you’ve never seen that kind before and have no idea what to do with it. When someone brings unfamiliar cheese to you, your response should be “I’ve done this many times.”
- Don’t let anyone else know you’ve found some cheese.
- Don’t share your cheese.
- Cheese can go away at any time without notice, hence #5.
- Cheese can go bad at any time. When this happens, disregard #5 and go ahead and share your cheese. An added benefit of this is that it will appear as if you’re finding cheese for others and you’ll be a hero. (Wait a minute? Isn’t this what the managers are supposed to be doing?)
- Do not ask for tools (e.g. software, or a computer that is at least as fast as the secretary’s) that will help you bring in new cheese.
- Do not expect your head cheese (i.e. manager, but we wanted to use the word cheese as much as possible) to find you cheese. You are expected to find the cheese so they can take credit for keeping their people working. (Besides, where did you think they get their overhead dollars?)
- If your head cheese finds you some cheese, watch out. It will be something undesirable, maybe even out of the state (remember - out of state, out of mind. Actually, I just made that up).
- Be careful. Just because it looks like cheese and/or smells like cheese, it may not actually be cheese.1 (This reminds us of the Cheech2 and Chong3 dog story4. If you don’t know who Cheech and Chong are then go to an antique store and try to find one of their records.5 Or you could look at their website. - editor)
- If you run out of cheese you’ll be assigned to do meaningless tasks until you learn not to run out of cheese. Also, these tasks will take all of your time so you will not be able to look for new cheese.
- If you have trouble finding new cheese, there is some training you can take. However, you will need to do this on your own time. Do you really think you should be allowed to learn something on company time. Remember, you are not allow to do anything productive when you don’t have cheese.
- Watch out! You know you’re in trouble when management actually implements some initiatives with “cheese” in the title. At times like this it is important to keep an even closer eye on your cheese, because they now know you have some and are trying to figure out how to get at it.1
- Sometimes the cheese will be forced down your throat. When that happens, the correct response is “thank you sir, may I have another?” Remember, they know how old you are and after a certain age, they really don’t care if you stay or leave, and would prefer it if you left so they don’t have to provide a severance package. Forcing cheese down your throat will help them, and if you choke, no loss. There are others where you came from.
- When cheese is scarce, watch out! There are people you work with who are incapable of finding their own cheese. They are, however, capable of talking loud in meetings and criticizing the work of others as their only way to show management how important they are. Management, unfortunately, is clueless on technical matters so this will be the only way they can make a judgement, and they will start taking your cheese and giving it to these people.
- If you're organization has a motto like, "Compared to the Communication orgainzation, we're not that bad." you're in big trouble.
- You might as well know, that there are some people never have to worry about finding cheese. These people are known by fellow employees to be useless, but for some reason their managers like them. Maybe it’s because these people make the managers look good. Maybe it’s because these people sell themselves well. However, these people have yet to produce anything. They are incompetent, irritating, and annoying, to point out their positive qualities. They have learned how to use LinkedIn and according to that, we know they are great because they have appended the word “expert” to the word describing what they do (i.e. usability expert). These people can even quit their jobs, move across state and take another job, get fired from that job after a few months, come back to their previous job as a subcontractor, then get hired as an employee after a month. Then, they lie on LinkedIn by removing all mention of this failure by deleting it from LinkedIn and are basically lying by implying that they never left. Of course this shouldn't surprise you because as you read what they write about themselves on LinkedIn they do everything, know everything, and you realize that it is all bull as well. These people never have to worry about finding cheese.
- When your management begins using the word “transparency,” begin to worry. Translated, it means “we want to know everything you᾿re working on because we᾿re clueless.” It does not mean what the word really means. It’s more like a one-way mirror. They want to know what you᾿re doing, but that doesn't mean you're going to find out whatelse is going on the the company. Don't expect to be aprised of new opportunities because of this new found transparency. It᾿s just a word and means absolutely nothing. In cheese-lingo, it means they want to know what cheese you have so they can take it and give it to someone else, someone incapable of finding their own cheese. And that someone is probably so obnoxious they can't find their own cheese because they are an irritant to normal people.
- If you have managers who are willing to dress up like vegetables, be afraid. This is not a good sign no matter what country you're from.
- Did you ever think that maybe they keep moving the cheese because they don’t want you to find it?
- Never cut the cheese (oh come on, you were thinking this yourself).
Other Cheese-Related Thoughts
- Remember, it’s not what you know, but who you know.
- Always activate your screen-saver when you walk away from your computer. This will prevent others from entering your office while you’re out and discovering that you actually have cheese.
- Remember, cheese spelled backwards is eseehc.
- Yes, I can say “Two all-beef patties, special sauce, lettuce, cheese, pickles, onions on a sesame seed bun” backwards, from memory, but surprisingly enough, that has never helped me in a single situation. (If you’re so young you don’t where that’s from I
feel sorry forenvy you.)
2 Cheech Marin was on some show with Don Johnson, if anybody cares.8
3 Tommy Chong makesd irregular appearances on That 70’s Show.8
4 Okay. It goes something like this. "Looks like dog , smells like dog , feels like dog , tastes like dog , it must be dog . Good thing we didn’t step in it." (Hey, come to think of it, this is exactly like some cheese I’ve come across.)
5 record (rêkerd) n. a disc, usually made of vinyl, designed for playing on a phonograph6
6 phonograph (fone-graf) n. An instrument that uses a vibrating needle to reproduce recorded sound from the grooves of a disc (i.e. a record). Commonly called a record player, (or turntable by an audiophile7).
7 audiophile (ôdê-a-fïl) n. A person who calls a record player a turntable.
8 Cheech and Chong, neither of who (Or is it whom? Whom cares.) have provided any cheese-related quotes, both are still alive, and both make more money than you ever will.