Posted tagged ‘opportunity’

Breaking up is hard to do

July 14, 2011

Sometimes breaking up is the right thing to doDear job,

I wanted to put a few things down in words because I’m finding it too difficult to admit them.  Before you read any further, I want you to know that you’ll always have a special place in my heart and have helped me grow so much as a person; for that I will always be grateful.

But we can’t live in the past.  things have moved on, we’ve both changed so much, so it’s with a heavy heart that I have to say that I’m leaving you.

I’ve not found someone else, but I know in my heart that there is the right place for me out there, somewhere which will value me for who and what I am and cherish our time and efforts together.  It might take me a week, it might take me a year, but I’m going to keep looking, trusting in my belief that our paths will cross. (more…)

If a job’s worth doing, do it properly

January 6, 2011

Let's see some proper ideas for a change

I noticed this article recently, which discusses the fact that most Chief Execs won’t take a pay cut as demanded by DCLG.  I can imagine Eric Pickles’ rage and fury that an edict he has issued has been summarily ignored by those in the field.

To be honest, and I’m not going to make friends here, I can see the Chief Execs points.  The cutting of their salary by 5% is hardly going to make much of a difference in the grand scheme of things, and is nothing more than a token gesture of solidarity.  In fact it’s not even a very good gesture – if I saw my own chief exec taking a 5% cut I’d still be aware that their remaining 95% was ample to support their lifestyles.

This is typical of the small-mindedness and headline grabbing attention that is getting local government nowhere.  People aren’t worried about whether their chief execs get paid £142,500 or £150,000, they are worried about whether or not four out of five of their team will be made redundant within a few months.

This spending review, and the restructures that go with it, are a chance for us to really look at what services local government should actually really be providing, and to what standards.  We should be looking at the things people need rather than the things people want, or even the things we want to deliver because either they sound good or because we have always provided them in the past.  If a service is needed – and I mean really needed, not just desired – then we should be keeping it and delivering it to at least acceptable if not good standards.  If not, then let’s look at other ways of providing it or simply letting it go.

Instead, from my own experience we are doing none of this.  We are looking at the people in our teams, picking those that we like or those projects which have received a positive response from the media or our bosses and also looking at power bases.  Senior managers are not doing anything which will jeopardise their own status or job security (as demonstrated by Camden in my opinion), and in fact are doing all they can to be the last ones standing.

If we keep focussing on easy targets, like how much a single member of staff is getting paid, we are missing whatever chance we had of making something positive out of this awful financial situation.  Let’s stop looking at a single twig and look at the whole forest.

Where is everybody?

October 12, 2010

Leaving on a (payoff funded) jetplane?

Where is everybody?

This was the slogan of a BA advert that was popular about 10 years ago. A dog threw himself a stick and chased it around the screen before looking into the camera like a lost puppy (which indeed, he was).

The not too subtle implication was that everyone had left the dog and taken one of BA’s sale flights off to the Caribbean or some such place.

I find myself feeling a little like the dog in the advert today. As the axe mangler approaches I keep coming across colleagues who have decided to pack it all in. I’ve counted five close-ish colleagues in maybe two weeks.

Each has their own reasons for jumping before the fight. Examples include:

1)      This is a great opportunity to set up my own business

2)      I’m going to travel

3)      I’m going to take this opportunity to do some studying

4)      Maybe this is the push I need to really go for this career change

In each case the money offered as part of the redundancy is helping really good people do things they might not have been able to do.

In some ways on a macro level I should be pleased. Local government cuts that led to long term unemployment would be almost intolerable. These people are all leaving to do great things.

However, apart from these people being friends the other characteristic they all share is that they are all very good at what they do. Some are senior, some are junior but they all work hard, come up with new ideas and enrich the organisations they work for.

So, here are my questions:

1)      Is the way local authorities doing their redundancies making it possible for them to lose their really good staff; thus getting stuck with those who have nowhere else to go and no incentive or drive to leave?

2)      Are we doing enough to offer protection to really good staff and make them feel wanted and as a key part of the future of our organisations?

3)      Should I be moving on too? Or at least considering it? Is this an opportunity that is too good to miss?

Then again, the decision might be taken out of my hands anyway…