Bill Lumbergh

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William Lumbergh
Office Space character
Created by Mike Judge
Portrayed by Gary Cole
Nickname(s) Lumbergh
Occupation Vice President, Initech

William "Bill" Lumbergh is a fictional character, who appeared initially in the Milton animated shorts, and later was portrayed by Gary Cole in the 1999 film Office Space. A caricature of corporate management, Lumbergh is a division Vice President of the software company Initech, and serves as the main antagonist of the film. He drives a blue Porsche 911 SC with a vanity license plate "MY PRSHE". He wears a two-tone shirt and suspenders with a belt – a fashion faux pas – as well as a college class ring.

Lumbergh is a micromanager who is focused on busy work and paperwork, notably TPS reports. He has been described as "the antithesis of the motivational management leadership ideal".[1] He greets subordinates with an unenthusiastic "what's happening?", and when asking an employee to do an unpleasant task, starts the sentence with, "I'm gonna need you to", or "if you could go ahead", as well as ending these requests with "that'd be great" and "mmmkay?" A Wharton Journal article said that the character "brilliantly exposed the emptiness of linguistic conventions at work."[2] Social historian Joe Moran writes that Lumbergh's "non-confrontational" communication style "masks the reality of management coercion".[3]

In Office Space, Bill Lumbergh is the pungently sarcastic but uninteresting Division Vice President of Initech, based in Texas. Lumbergh, who is a micromanager, constantly annoys the employees working at Initech, along with Dom, the Division President, and six other bosses at the company. In all of his appearances, he is holding a coffee cup. Although Peter loathes Lumbergh, it is unknown of how Lumbergh thinks of Peter, although it is implied that he is disapproving of the depressed employee. Sometime near the end of the film, it is his birthday, and his workers unenthusiasticly sing "Happy Birthday" to him, which suggests that Bill is also strict to the other employees. Peter and his coworkers Samir and Mike decide to hack the company's financial records, but they accidentally steal over $300,000 from the company. This lowers Lumbergh's stock in the company, but he, Dom, and the other executives are alerted about the hack. At the end of the film, Initech burns down and Lumbergh is (presumably) seen with the other workers. After this, Lumbergh is either out of a job, or he got a job as Division Vice President at Initrode, Initech's rival.

It is unclear if Bill is related to Ron Lumbergh, who works as a senior executive at Initrode.


  1. ^ Green, Doyle (2010). The American Worker on Film: A Critical History, 1909-1999. McFarland & Company. pp. 191–92. ISBN 978-0-7864-4734-3. 
  2. ^ Cole, Douglas (February 12, 2007). "Why we should remember Bill Lumbergh". Archived from the original on 12 March 2007. 
  3. ^ Moran, Joe (2005). Reading the Everyday. Taylor & Francis. p. 38. ISBN 978-0-415-31708-5. 

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