There was something awfully strange about Michael getting greeted at the hotel. He got to go into an area that was for upper management and the board members only, to a room that had two security guards standing outside the door. As Michael and the upper echelon were going on the stage, they too were also mysteriously escorted by security. It didn't take very long for the mystery to get explained, as the crowd passionately jeered at all of them. Having an uncharismatic CEO that spoke in condescending and do-nothing jargon, Michael forgetting to cover the microphone while talking, and then trying to do damage control by demonstrating the company's excessive over-spending on him, only managed to further anger the shareholders. As the CEO was digging everybody into a bigger hole, Michael's brashful counter-intuitiveness was able to turn the momentum of the crowd.
Instead of listening to Michael, the upper echelon only beat him down further, until Michael decided to do something that they were not familiar with: listen to an employee. However, this only led to Oscar feeling intenselly uncomfortable. Sadly, he is also completely aware of the company's problems, but just too intimidated to speak out. Oscar has the awareness that going against upper management could have severe consequences. Michael, on the other hand, does not hesitate to think twice, before name-calling, thus creating tension between himself and his superiors.
The other struggle between the ranks is a result of the company's direction, as well as Ryan reigniting his old feud with Jim. With Michael gone, Jim finds himself struggling to gain the respect of the employees, and keeping them in line. Since asking didn't work, Jim had to resort to being directive, which resulted in the continuation of the running joke of Ryan's work station always getting bumped around.
I was very much expecting Oscar to make a good pitch, given Andy's encouragement throughout the episode. I was kind of disappointed that he chickened out when given a ripe opportunity right in front of all the important people at Dunder Mifflin.
And until last week's episode, I never would've thought little Dunder Miffling -- which for so many years was the anti-Staples -- would turn out to be this big publicly-traded company with angry stockholders and the like. I knew they had a bunch of branches, but I still don't understand why DMI would exist.
Oh well, they're at least doing a good job of staying relevant, tying in the recession to the storylines.
I think it was established at the end of last season, that there were shareholders. There may have been references in earlier seasons, but I can't think of them off the top of my head.