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July 2013

June 2013

It really is this easy!

My core message is not new or original: people are an organisation’s greatest asset. The fact is that it is your people who shape your organisation, define its brand and ensure its strategic integrity. People provide the ‘value-add’ to your organisation that determines its sustainability and without which the organisation simply cannot survive.

It is therefore encouraging that employee engagement is becoming such a pervasive topic, and one that you would have to be Sleeping Beauty or Rip van Winkle not to have encountered.  You may, however, also be wondering if the subject isn’t perhaps becoming a modern Tower of Babel.

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Cross the manager/leader divide!

There is a new fashion in town. You may have seen it. You may have experienced it or, more accurately, be experiencing it yourself right now: the requirement for managers to be leaders.

PASS iStock_000001252419MediumThe subject appears to be an obsession. It seems that every business programme on the radio or television, or every newspaper or business magazine, or every blog and newsletter has something to say, and advice to offer, on the subject. There is, undeniably, an unprecedented demand for leaders. The question, however, is it real or is it just a fashion?

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It's no joke really!

Have you ever noticed how a good joke spreads? And endures? Have you ever wondered why this is? Or thought about what makes a great joke?

The very best jokes have an element of truth. That is why the most popular comedians get the most laughs when they take normal, everyday events or situations that we have all experienced and recount an exaggerated version from their own life or observations. Just watch the audience if you doubt it.

But let’s now test the theory. There’s a joke that you are possibly familiar with. It’s one I hear regularly and first heard it almost thirty years ago. You know the one – “What’s the definition of a management consultant?”

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"Double Standards"

The recent announcement that Network Rail bosses are getting 6 figure bonuses despite failing to achieve corporate targets hardly caused a ripple. Apart from the inevitable outcry by trade unions and left-wing politicians there seems to have been very little response. You have to ask whether this is because they only received 17% of their salaries, instead of the full 60%, due to missed performance targets.  

There are a number of reasons, however, why these reports are quite shocking and indicate the extent to which “the bonus culture” has become endemic and how – despite some public outrage, especially over financial sector bonuses – nobody is really giving the subject any deep thought.  This BBC report  begs a number of questions that should be being asked.

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