Monday, November 17, 2008

Finding a New Job On-Line

Sure these are tough economic times, and maybe in this tumult of free-falling finance you've managed to find yourself out of a job and on the street. DON'T SWEAT IT!, claims the FSRI. With failure comes opportunity! Before you go home and drown yourself in sorrow, stop in at the nearest internet cafe and GET TO WORK!


The internet has become a marvelous tool for job searching in our modern business climate. Through the internet you can access newspaper classifieds, submit resumes to job-finding databases such as or Google and go directly to company sites where job-postings are readily available. In no time you may find another job waiting for you just around the corner ...and all it took was a few minutes surfing the web!

If weeks have gone by, however, and your job search has led you to repeated dead ends the FSRI recommends that you consider this option: start your own internet, job-search company! It may come as a surprise, but many successfully employed people obtained their employment through starting and building successful companies of their own. And what better situation could you wish for?'re an employee of your own company (i.e. you're working!), you can join in all the thrills that owning and operating a business provides, and, if worse comes to worst, you've created and managed a great platform for finding new work whenever you need it!


Remember, owning and operating a company is not simply a matter of obtaining a business license and then watching as the revenue pours in. No. There's all kinds of stuff you have to do, like making sure other employees don't fight during business hours and keeping poachers out of your parking space. But if you stick with it, you're sure to excell! When you're following the Faking Smart! advice we give you, you have no choice but to succeed!


Monday, October 13, 2008

Krugman Wins Nobel - Wolfbrooks Ager Reacts

FSRI Newswire, 13 October

Moose Jaw, Can. - AP reports today that The Nobel Committee awarded Paul Krugman, the Princeton University scholar and New York Times columnist, the Nobel prize in economics for his analysis of how economies of scale can affect trade patterns and the location of economic activity.

Karl Wolfbrooks Ager, lead economist and founder of the FSRI (Faking Smart! Research Institute) had this to say: "Why we should concern ourselves with guns, butter and widgets during this period of financial free-fall is beyond me. You have to wonder if the Nobel committee has their heads screwed on right."

When asked if this announcement had any implications on broader contemporary economic theory, Wolfbrooks was skeptical. "You've got a lot of economists out there and not one of them can tell you why this washing machine won't take my quarters. I got some BBQ sauce on my ascot last night and I've been here for the better part of a day trying to launder it. Ask Mr. Krugman what his theories are on that."

Over the past several days the Nobel Institute has rolled out its much anticipated list of 2008 prize winners in fields such as physics, chemistry, literature and peace. Scholars are honored for the highest level of achievement in their respective disciplines.

"Sure," added Wolfbrooks, "everyone wants a prize to stick in their office trophy case. Can't blame them. The question is... how much is this medal really worth? I think even Mr. Krugman would agree that it's all a matter of real vs. perceived value."

Wolfbrooks noted that, with all the publicity the Nobel institute is receiving from this years list of winners, he was considering that the FSRI might try something similar. "We'll see. I guarantee that there are millions of people out there who would do just about anything to get a Faking Smart! award. I'll run it by our Promotions and Awards division and see if it's feasible."

When asked what he was doing in Moose Jaw, Canada, Wolfbrooks appeared startled. "Canada?," he said. "Impossible!"

Saturday, September 27, 2008


FSRI Newswire, 28 September

Washington - Unsubstantiated reports give clear indication that the FSRI (Faking Smart! Research Institute) is in the middle of bailout talks with Ben Bernanke and the Federal Reserve System. Sources indicate that this may be one of the biggest bailouts in U.S. history, marking an unprecedented move by an institute that has no apparent connection with the banking industry nor any knowledge of what the banking industry does, let alone the Federal Reserve System.

"It's a bold move," says financial expert Decateur Thoms. "When I saw that this was really going down I didn't know what to make of it. I mean's the Federal Reserve and all that. Whatever..." When pressed further Thoms offered nothing to help clarify the dire circumstances. "Hey, I'm just trying to get by. Fall's coming and my lawn-mowing business is about to dry up. And my mom's starting to hound me about paying rent for my basement apartment."

If true, the FSRI will take control of The Fed in one of the nation's most turbulent economic times.  With congress poised to strike a deal with the Bush administration and Treasury Secretary Henry M. Paulson Jr. over a national banking system in turmoil, the bid by the FSRI may only serve to complicate matters. "This only adds to the headache," complained Eric Samson, former aide to the unofficial aide of Senator Chris Dodd, D-Connecticut. "With the FSRI parachuting into this problem it might stir things up. Senators are under a lot of stress right now ...why make it more difficult than it already is? Then again, the name and recognition of the FSRI may lend weight to the process and help to calm investor and depositor concerns."

Karl Wolfbrooks Ager, founder and head of the FSRI and FSIHL(Faking Smart! Institute for Higher Learning) gave a brief and non-specific response when asked about the FSRI's roll in this pending crisis:"If we're in talks with The Fed, it's news to me. Then again, all options are on the table." Asked if he thought the FSRI could saddle such a massive undertaking, Wolfbrooks Ager exhibited cool confidence:"We've been in talks before and we always come out feeling good about ourselves. Hopefully The Fed will recognize this." Wolfbrooks Ager, indifferent and more interested in the nutmeg dispenser at the local Starbucks where this interview was conducted added one more thing:"I've got my checkbook in my vest pocket. If the Fed want's out, let's start by talking numbers."

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Working with Temporary Agencies, "Temping"

In the last ten to fifteen years temporary employment agencies, or Temp Agents, have become an unlikely mainstay in helping entry level employees find gainful work. One advantage to temp agencies is that they have the unique ability, through a working knowledge of the corporate employee marketplace, to pair employers with employees that are best suited for one another.

This can be an excellent launch-pad for a prospective cubicle-based employee to get his or her name out as someone immediately available for work. The drawback to signing on with temp agencies is that, as their name implies, they aren’t around long enough to adequately assist the job-seeker. Temp agencies come and go like luck at a roulette table. If you can, apply at a temp agency and insist on getting a placement that very day. If you don’t you may come back the next day and find that it’s turned into a take-out teriyaki lunch hut. Such is the reality of this modern method of finding employment.

Good luck!, and happy Temping.


Friday, May 30, 2008

Hollywood Hustler ...Faking Smart?

Hail, all...

This video caught the attention of the FSRI YouTube division. This is exactly the right person who might benefit from a deeper knowledge of Faking Smart!

The Hollywood Hustler?

Sure, this fellow seems to have a good sense of what he's doing ...where he's going and how he want's to get there, but a few short courses from the FSIHL might sharpen his game.

KWA and the FSRI

Saturday, May 3, 2008

Decision Making - The Five Second Rule

There's been a lot of talk about the FSRI "Five Second Rule." Here's a re-cap of our standard policy:

-The Five-Second Rule for decision making:

Managers look best when they make split-decisions, therefore, by making every decision you are presented with a “five-second” split-decision you earn respect and solidify your hold on power.

“Yes” or “no” questions are obviously the easiest for a Faking Smart! manager to accommodate. If an employee asks to have a day off next week to get married, say “no” without hesitation. If someone comes up and wonders if a fellow employee in the cubicle next to him should be allowed to drink beer during work, give a quick and unqualified “yes.” You’ve made the decision. Now, let it stand. It doesn’t matter what the consequences are, the fact that you’ve considered the problem and addressed it in a short order is all that counts.

Making split-decisions over open-ended questions, however, can be trickier fare. If, for example, an employee comes up to you and claims that a customer is concerned over appropriate federal compliance for licensing of a product, answer with an abrupt: “Tell him to bring up his concerns with our licensing department at extension blah, blah, blah.” Likewise, if an employee comes up to you in tears and says that he just learned that his family pet has died, answer curtly with this: “On behalf of myself and Incredidata (or whatever company you work for), we offer our condolences. Now get over it and show me some numbers.”

Remember, you have five seconds to come up with an answer to a problem or question. If the reply runs longer, don’t worry. That the decision was resolved in five seconds is the crucial part. Business moves at a fast pace. By allowing yourself only five seconds to answer questions you are giving yourself time to fit in many more questions during the day. Imagine taking an hour to answer one single question. At that rate you would only answer eight questions in the day! (Six, if you subtract for a two-hour lunch hour.) By following the five-second rule you can answer 12 questions in a minute, 720 questions in an hour or 4320 questions in a full, 24 hour day! No wonder split-second decision makers are the ones that make it to the top. With the five-second rule you also avoid the pitfall most managers find themselves in: overthinking the overthinkable. “Don’t overthink it,” reminds the FSRI. “Make it a split-decision and git’r done!”

Good luck!

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Decateur Delivers Emergency Address on Economy

Hey, what's up? Whatever...

Just thought I'd drop a note here to let everybody know that just because the economy is in the tank you shouldn't freak out and sell the farm. Sure, the Dow's spiraling down the drain, foreclosures are accelerating nationally and gas is through the roof; but for me, none of this really matters.

Let me explain.

First of all, even though I consider myself and expert on market trends, equity and commodity trading, real-estate, hedge funds and the global economy, I don't, right now, have anything invested in any of these threatened sectors and consequently I won't feel the hurt as they plummet. It's not that I don't want to invest millions of dollars in currency trading's just that I can't right now. Let's leave it at that. Once my online company gets off the ground (...six solid years I've been working on this - and no, I won't drop you a clue about my product line) there will be plenty of time for dabbling. In the meantime I'll ride out this rough spot with the paltry compensation I get from writing these advice posts and from the gold mine I'm sure to strike mowing neighborhood lawns this coming summer.

So don't worry about me, I'll be just fine. Now, I've got to put the garbage out and my mom wants me to clean up my downstairs apartment because she's having guests come by tomorrow.

Gook luck, or whatever...


The FSRI in no way agrees with or supports any of the facts or opinions presented or expressed in the content of this column, nor does the FSRI encourage anyone to read it. If you have read this column we apologize profusely and hope you forget about it and move quickly on to another website or blog.


Thursday, March 27, 2008

March Madness...

Good Morning!

Well, as March finds itself quickly resolving its brief but reliable appearance this year, we here at the FSRI Blogging Division want to wish everyone a pleasant and moderately productive spring.

As the weather grows steadily warmer in these northern climbs, it is important to maintain focus at the workplace. Here are a few tips to keep your office appearances up, while reducing that of others:

1. Remember to APPEAR PRODUCTIVE. Stacks of papers on your desk are a true mark of someone putting in "the extra effort" needed to keep the company on track.

2. A good spring cleaning does wonders for a cubicle. If you can, throw everything out that was around during the winter months - this may include pictures of old boy or girlfriends, plants, cute office toys and fish. Start your spring by designing your cubicle with a new theme. Be daring, and most importantly, make your cubicle a representation of the person you think we think you should be!

3. Present your boss or manager with new insurmountable obstacles. Infect the floor computers with esoteric and heretofore unseen viruses from eastern Europe. Instill fear of an office outbreak of bubonic plague. Finally, spread rumors of a corporate-wide "reshuffling" of staff. Remember, you are the next in line for the management position. Making it tough on your manager is a great way to "pave your way to future success!"

4. Disseminate new photos of your classic Fiat (...any magazine or internet photo will do). Tell your co-workers that it's still in the shop, but the second your clutch is repaired you'll give everyone a ride ( long as the brakes hold out.) Owning and driving an exotic foreign car makes a good impression on your co-workers and it catches the eye of upper management!

5. Throw in a pizza party this Friday! Order eight pizzas over the company phone (or anyone's phone but yours) ...when the pizzas arrive claim to have nothing to do with it. This "pizza party" increases worker moral while at the same time forcing management to empty its pockets to avoid worker resentment and dissent.

Great work! Keep Faking Smart!, and we'll see you soon.


Monday, February 18, 2008

Office Politics

Good Morning!

The subject we are discussing today is how to Fake Smart while talking about politics at your office or place of work. With all the buzz surrounding the on-going U.S. primary season, we feel it important to leave you with a few simple tactics and strategies to help you to avoid swimming blindly into the shark-infested waters of this innocent office chit-chat.

Now, when we say "politics" we are referring to "national politics" and not the "internal politics" that surfaces at your office on a daily basis. An example of internal workplace politics might be the talk you have with your cubicle neighbor over who the boss is dating and how this will effect the roster at next week's company kick-ball game. "Who are you voting for as president of the U.S.A. this fall?", on the other hand, is a question one might encounter that evokes non-internal or "national politics." This is the kind of question we are talking about today, and this is the kind of question you should be watching out for.
There one basic rule to Faking Smart while discussing politics at the workplace:

1. Never initiate a discussion about politics with anyone at your workplace.

Yes, this rule is easy to adhere to, and it will help you avoid many an awkward adventure upon a raft on the seas of human unpredictability. But what this rule doesn't do is eliminate, completely, the chance that YOU may drawn into a discussion about politics by someone else!

If you are drawn into a political conversation while at work, follow these four Faking Smart tips:

1. Never ally yourself with a candidate before you clearly know who the person you are talking to is backing.

2. Once you know which candidate the person you are talking to is backing, claim to back this candidate as well.

3. When the opposing candidate's name is mentioned, shiver and appear nauseated.

4. Never fall into the trap of calling political factions as, for example, "the conservatives" or "the liberals." Always refer to the counter faction as "them"; the allied faction as "us."
Again, you are attempting to learn these tactics and strategies to better you chances of Faking Smart at the workplace. Politics can be a touchy business. Unfortunately, many believe that having an active, working knowledge of our country's political landscape (especially during a busy primary season such as the one we are now in) is a sign of intelligence. That someone is up-to-date on current political developments might hint that this person maintains an elevated social acuity, that he or she has trained a discriminating eye at power-politics and that he or she holds an inherent interest in political movement and change in general. The truth could not be further from this.
People want to know if you are for their guy or gal. Your intelligence is judged by the simple choice you make deciding on a candidate. If you side with the candidate that the person you are talking to sides with, you reflect having made an intelligent, measured decision and you appear smarter!

Practice this: find out who your supervisor or team lead supports, then, whenever you see your supervisor, quickly put on a pin for the candidate he or she likes. When your supervisor or lead leaves, remove the pin. Do this with everybody in your office, if you can. The more people who see you supporting "their" candidate, the more people there will be who consider you smart!

Good luck!

Saturday, February 9, 2008

Lipstick Vertigo...

This is an uncharacteristic move for us here at the FSRI. We've decided to publish this "comedy short" for those who might be interested. (Perhaps this may provide a needed diversion from your office routine...?)

Yes, I'm proud to announce that I did some work producing this ground-breaking film. And I'm glad to say that Martin Fossum, a distinguished member of our staff here at the FSRI Blogging Division, is the creater of this project. I hope you enjoy this as much as we have here at the FSRI Independent Movie Division. I love popcorn.

Notice his glasses...?

You can also view this film on YouTube.

Good Joss, all,

Thursday, January 31, 2008

12 Glossy Prints and a Double Latte for the Road...

I thought I'd share this wintry spectacle with everyone. This is the view outside our Cascade Faking Smart! Headquarters (near Washington State) after a recent snowfall. Believe it or not, straight ahead and to the right is a Kinkos where many of my memos are faxed all around the world.

Good luck,

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Poisoned Cookies

An account of FSRI break room activity:

On a recent afternoon I happened across an open bag of cookies sitting on the counter in our main FSRI break room. I was surprised (and in hindsight, perhaps should have been suspicious), that such a delightful dessert had been left behind and forgotten. I was even more excited to learn that these cookies were not exactly cookies, but Dutch chocolate hazelnut wafer treats. Being a devoted fan of hazelnut I indulged myself with vigor. In fact I made several trips into the break room that afternoon to secretly nibble away at the contents of this pleasurable discovery. At home that evening I fell gravely ill, throwing up everything, I believe, I had eaten in the past month.

After taking a day off of work to recover, I returned to the FSRI offices and quicky learned from a co-worker that Jill, one of our foreign policy advisers, had also fallen ill after buying and eating those Dutch hazelnut wafers. (It took her three days to return to her former self...) Upon hearing this I immediately went to the break room and discovered that the bag of wafers was still there waiting for its next unsuspecting victim. I sent for security and ordered the bag incinerated, making it clear that if I found that bag circulating in the security offices, there would be no end to my wrath.

My professional reaction:
-I delivered a written reprimand to Jill (...which she received with surprising nonchalance.)

-I outlawed Dutch hazelnut wafers from ever appearing on the FSRI premises.

-I sent a memo asserting a new edict that desserts, if they were to be eaten and left behind in the FSRI break room, must have medical testing clearance and be so indicated by a sticker on the outer packaging of the product.

Since the implementation of these new regulations I am glad to announce that no one has fallen ill from eating Dutch hazelnut wafer crackers at FSRI headquarters. (These regulations are still awaiting approval at our Utrecht offices...)


Sunday, January 13, 2008

A Special Note From Decateur...

This is not a football blog.  However, when a certain team produces certain results ...and dominates a game, it is worth mentioning.
Great Work, Packers, and good luck next week against the Giants.
(This post was approved by the FSRI Blogging Division)