By Daneet Steffens
Updated May 31, 1996 at 04:00 AM EDT

In The Dilbert Principle: A Cubicle’s-Eye View of Bosses, Meetings, Management Fads & Other Workplace Afflictions, Scott Adams (who’s been lampooning the subject in his popular comic strip, Dilbert, since 1989) has combined management-survival tips with his own cartoons. Adding believe-it-or-not samples from the more than 200 E-mails he receives daily from real-life workers, he explains why business is so absurd, how to look busy when you’re not, and why computer programmers are such oddballs. With his familiar characters populating the pages — Dilbert, the techie with the turned-up tie; his Machiavellian sidekick, Dogbert; and the boss who can’t tell an Etch-A-Sketch from a laptop — Adams has cannily skewered life around the water cooler. A