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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Last night I caught a re-run episode of the show. They sure do a good job of getting some tears out of me, sheesh. The basic premise is that the CEO of a company will change his or her appearance and pose as a bottom-rung new worker competing for a spot with another new worker. They explain the cameras with this story. Anyway, the identity of the CEO is revealed at the very end of the show (usually to the three existing "trainer" employees he met while 'posing') to great shock. I'm probably not describing it very well. Here.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Undercover_Boss

Has anyone seen this show? What are your thoughts and impressions? Do you agree with the conclusions typically reached by the CEOs?
 

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Each show is very different. I've seen probably 5 or so of them. Most of the are about pulling at heart strings which makes good TV.

One of the shows the CEO actually found improvements and promoted people, most of the others the CEO gave the employee a few thousand dollars for their cause.
It's an OK show, good for killing time, i wouldn't waste bandwidth on it though.
 

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I've watched this show a couple of times. The psych student part of me likes the "deception research" feel to the show. :)

I particularly like when the CEOs take the suggestions of the staff seriously and try to build real change around the company. In one episode, at a laundry/dry-cleaning company, the bags would come in tied up stupidly by the drivers, making it take tons of time to undo them. The staffer commented that it was probably the biggest time-waster in his day. The CEO (having had to fight with knots all day himself) made it a priority to change that.

In the couple episodes I watched, things always had a positive spin to them, it wasn't so much of a "gotcha being bad" show. Have you seen any episodes where an employee got canned or anything?
 

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I haven't seen the show, but something related happened to me some years back, when I'd been working at my job just a couple of years. I was on a business trip and working temporarily at one of my company's satellite offices; visiting employees can reserve a room for themselves in the office ahead of time. When I walked in to my reserved room on the first morning, the CEO was sitting there at my desk; he was visiting the satellite office as well and didn't realize that the room had been reserved ahead of time. I introduced myself (I'd never met him before and didn't realize he was the CEO), explained the situation, and asked politely if he could leave, since I had reserved the office. He left with no complaints and went off to find another free desk.

When I tell this story to colleagues, about half of them are astonished that I didn't let him stay at my desk, after all he's the CEO and outranks me; the other half said they would do the same thing: everyone should respect the company's policies, even the CEO.
 

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Has anyone seen this show? What are your thoughts and impressions? Do you agree with the conclusions typically reached by the CEOs?
Ya, I've seen a couple episodes of it..it's just a new type of reality show
with some conclusions at the end. It only works if the boss has not
been recognized by the employees. The last one was "White Castle"..
a US hamburger joint chain. Some of the recommendations made sense.
better than the Donald's..you're fired!
 

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I have watched it and I am shocked at how out-of-touch the executives are. When I was a CEO, all the executives would spend a day every quarter on the front lines. While the people there were intimidated initially, they eventually reacted well to my questioning when they realized that we were taking their advice and also giving them feedback when we did not take their advice.

Everyone eventually knew us as people rather than figureheads, and they would actually approach us whenever there was something needing upper level attention.

But I suppose we would not have qualified for a one hour TV show. And we sure would be not be giving $10k away randomly to selected employees.

Americans don't seem to deserve the dedication demonstrated by their employees on these shows.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Actually there was ONE segment/episode I saw where there was a customer service agent who was apparently rude to a rude customer. I wish I could remember which company/episode that was but this show normally ends with the CEO saying how impressed he was with each of the people and pledged to give them a boost in life and giving them some sort of windfall of cash. In this case the employee was NOT given these things, but was told by the CEO that they were NOT impressed by what took place and that they were sending the employee to some customer service or sensitivity training (IIRC). That was the only time I've seen that happen. Every other episode showed us GOOD employees who were a bit down on life's luck somehow but still super dedicated to the company.
 

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...windfall of cash. In this case the employee was NOT given these things, but was told by the CEO that they were NOT impressed by what took place and that they were sending the employee to some customer service or sensitivity training (IIRC). That was the only time I've seen that happen. Every other episode showed us GOOD employees who were a bit down on life's luck somehow but still super dedicated to the company.
Well that's the reward system coming into play. Good employee struggling
to make ends meet...boss finds out..and here ya go..a $5,000 scholarship
bonus to attend "the college of chiken knowledge)... (tax writeoff
for the company under US IRA rules.), some touchy-feely tear jerk moments
and it all makes for good TV watching. :D
 

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I have seen this a couple times ( Waste Management & 7 Eleven episodes ) The CEO's were so funny trying to do the labour intensive jobs. Overall I rate it as a good show - it reminds an employer that no matter what job a person has or does, you have to be cognisant of the people that are in your circle of influence.
 

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My CEO is referred to by first name, so I don't think there are many corporate types he could pull this on. Front-line employees would probably know him, too, as he's reasonably well-known.
 
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