Saying farewell to The Office's Michael Scott

Human resources
By CHRIS FARAONE  |  May 10, 2011

Office main
WORK ETHIC Michael ran Dunder Mifflin’s Scranton post with a unique interpretation of company protocol. 

To Whom It May Concern:

I've been Dunder Mifflin's in-house cameraman for about seven years, during which time I have followed Michael Scott around his office and his world and, occasionally, to the restroom. We've shared moments, milkshakes, Kleenex, and on one occasion the back seat of a Chrysler Sebring. In our time together, I've truly connected with the soul of Michael's office, and with the man who has made it tick for more than a decade. As such, he has asked me to write an honest and objective letter to his potential future employers.

Although Michael requested that I skip the basics and plunge right into how he goes above and beyond baseline requirements, there are some essential qualities of his that should be noted up front. As far as work ethic is concerned, he's an early bird and a night owl, renowned at Dunder Mifflin for examining all decisions 100 different ways. It's as if Michael had no personal life; once he even had to stage a fake suicide to show employees how demanding his job is.

Secondly, Michael is one of the most generous people I've ever known, having donated money through the years to needy causes including Afghanistanis with AIDS. And his philanthropy isn't limited to writing checks. Michael's biggest flaw is that he spends too much time volunteering, whether it's with the Scranton Boy Scouts or at the local playground feeding hungry birds. He also loves babies, decries hate speech, and once almost paid for an entire class of underprivileged city kids to attend college.

You might say that Michael ran Dunder Mifflin's Scranton post with a unique interpretation of company protocol. With sales goals routinely met on the business side — and sometimes up as much as 17 percent each quarter — he took every opportunity to improve the quality of life for those around him, turning his branch into the cool, fun branch. Michael knows the value of fostering a positive work environment, and he often defused tense racial situations with effective cultural-awareness workshops.

Always willing to represent Dunder Mifflin in public, Michael served as a branch delegate to corporate, as well as to the larger Scranton community. He's given animated lectures to local college students, and he once delivered the keynote address at a high-school job fair. To share his sense of pride with co-workers, Michael even wrote, produced, and starred in a stage play about the history of Dunder Mifflin, which he performed with a co-manager at a company picnic.

Above all, Michael knows how to energize the office — with special events like the Weight Loss Awards and our annual Dundies — and how to make it an environment for welcoming. A friend first, boss second, and entertainer third, he's deeply involved with his employees and their home lives, acting as a master of guidance whose door is always open except when it's closed. One year Michael even bought an office temp a $400 holiday gift and asked for no sexual favors in return.

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