TV Article

EW Truth Police: Scott Free?

How real is the office in ''The Office''? -- EW asks a Human Resources director to evaluate Michael Scott's performance

How real is the office in ''The Office''?

Could you really e-mail a photo of your boss topless to the staff and continue collecting a paycheck every week? On NBC's The Office, big cheese Michael Scott (Steve Carell) continues to survive despite endless managerial gaffes. But we wanted to see what would happen at an actual office. So we tracked down Lynn A. Donnini, human resources and marketing director at the Scranton-headquartered Pennsylvania Paper and Supply Company.

Though she's a fan of the show — ''my husband and I laugh our butts off'' — Donnini is unimpressed with Michael's skills as a boss. ''He would probably spend some time in the HR office in the real world,'' she says. ''There may be a probationary period at some point, and overall if [bad behavior] continued, no, he probably would not have a job. Nice guy or not, he has crossed the line a few times. And he doesn't mediate that well. He just wants his laundry done.'' (For the record, PA Paper's company policy is that ''everybody's responsible for doing their own wash.'')

But while Michael probably wouldn't cut it as a non-TV supervisor, one of his Officemates did manage to impress our HR consultant: Donnini is surprisingly soft on the obsequious-yet-power-hungry Dwight Schrute (Rainn Wilson). ''Dwight loves his boss tremendously and there's really nothing wrong with that,'' she says. ''He's a dedicated employee, and if you have that...you can get over the personality thing.''

Originally posted Feb 16, 2007 Published in issue #922 Feb 23, 2007 Order article reprints