Life Imitates Art? Office Depot, Staples and Dunder Mifflin

“What happens to a company if somebody takes a boss away? I will answer your question with a question. It’s like what happens to a chicken when you take its head away. It dies unless you find a new head. I need to find which one of these people has the skills to be a chicken head,” – Michael Scott, Regional Manager, Dunder Mifflin

With CEO approval ratings of 5 percent and 56 percent respectively, perhaps CEOs Steve Odland (Office Depot) and Ron Sargent (Staples) would be wise to heed the wisdom of the dysfunctional but loveable regional manager of fictitious office supply business Dunder Mifflin.

Michael Scott (Dunder Miffllin Regional Manager), Ron Sargent (Staples CEO), Steve Odland (Office Depot CEO)
Michael Scott (Dunder Miffllin Regional Manager), Ron Sargent (Staples CEO), Steve Odland (Office Depot CEO)

There’s a saying that sometimes fact is stranger than fiction. In order to maintain the integrity of our data, we carefully examine each and every company review that comes into Glassdoor and, well, we couldn’t agree more (you’ve already seen the salaries!). So, after scores of reviews from Office Depot, where employees give CEO Steve Odland a measly 5 percent approval rating (84% disapprove); and Staples whose CEO Ron Sargent is holding steady with a 56% approval rating (17% disapprove), something started to dawn on us. Were these reviews from…Dunder Mifflin?

We all know there’s speculation out there that maybe the popular TV show The Office, which satires American office life, is modeled after one of the office giants. We are huge fans, so in anticipation of the fifth season premier we thought we’d share with you just how close fact can mirror fiction.

See if you find these real employee reviews from Glassdoor reminiscent of some of the more eccentric characters from The Office.

Staples, Inventory Manager in North Haven, CT
“I’d rather…”
“I’d rather fly a cargo plane full of rubber dog sh*t out of Hong Kong then stay working at Staples.”
Office Depot, Lead Engineer in Delray Beach, FL
“Keep on looking…”
“It doesn’t hurt to say thank you from time to time. With the work environment as poor as it is, being gracious for the extra time and effort employees put in, a thank you would at least help ease some of the anxiety and poor morale.”
Office Depot, Account Manager in Indianapolis, IN
“I love my job on a day to day basis.”
“Right now things are not good…. I am told by those who have been around much longer that the pendulum swings both ways and now it is WAY to the bad. Morale is very bad and I am sick of hearing everyone crab…”
Office Depot, Project Manager, Delray Beach, FL
“Leadership needs to grow a set or leave.”
“Ineffective senior management – same stuff over and over and over and over. It’s like Groundhog Day at OD!!”
Office Depot, Account Manager II in Philadelphia, PA
“I hate that we pay so much for our benefits and the only time that is helpful is if I break a leg or slip into a coma.”
Office Depot, Senior Manager in Delray Beach, FL
“Morale sucks!”
“The company leadership has no clue right now how to lead the company forward. And the board of directors is stale and also part of the problem.”
Staples, HR Framingham, MA
“Staples is the land of opportunity! For its associates, its customers and its investors!”
“Staples is a place of integrity, with a leadership team of highly ethical business leaders. Treatment to the customers is held to that standard as well. There is a pride that is apparent for those of us who work at Staples.”
Office Depot, Sales Associate in Wichita, KS
“We need to get back to the basic principles.”
“The company needs to get back to its roots on creating a productive and happy environment for its employees. The company used to have a slogan written on the walls of every store: ‘Our customers mean everything, without them nothing else matters’. Back then the leadership understood that happy customers are created with happy employees. The principles back then were simple and there was no confusion.”

So, whaddya think? Guess there’s a little Dunder Mifflin in every workplace. Find out more about prospective employers and share your own experience by posting an anonymous review of your own at