A Management Fable


Frank and the Spanner In the Midlands there is a factory.  They make bits, which fit into other bits, which eventually find their way into washing machines and lawn mowers. It is a grimy old factory that bumps along the bottom of the industrial supply chain, just about making enough money to keep its doors […]

Strengths and Weaknesses

Harry Hopkins

Harry was not a well man He was in a terrible state of health.  Cancer had eaten away at his digestive tract, it was so bad that surgeons had removed three-quarters of his stomach. He was constantly in and out of hospital, surviving on a diet of caffeine, nicotine and blood transfusions. A friend’s daughter […]

Management Beliefs

Management Beliefs

Do you believe in self-help? One of my favourite quotes is from Henry Ford: Whether you think you can, or you think you can’t — you’re right Personally I am all for a bit of self belief, but does it work for organisations as well as people? Does belief have a place in business? In 1974 […]

Free Gym Membership Anyone?

gym membership

Morale is low… It is a big problem, staff turnover is high, skills and expertise are walking out of the door at an alarming rate and my business is heading for a melt-down. Two solutions have been put forward: Solution 1. 1. Review the benefits package, make it more competitive. Do some job matching and pay over […]

The Motivation Sink


Can you motivate someone? The gurus tell me that you can’t. You can’t give your staff motivation. It is not within your gift. Motivation is intrinsic, it comes from within. It isn’t something you can hand out with a carrot or a stick. You can make somebody do something, but you can’t motivate them, not […]

Ever Been Motivated by a Poster?

Quality Poster

Imagine you make fish fingers for a living… Don’t laugh, it is a tough job I used to do it, I smelled awful after an 8 hour night shift cutting up blocks of frozen cod.  The icy, sleety, wind from the North Sea was a positive boon when I walked out of the plant 6 in […]

Are Sales Incentives a Good Thing?

Saint Francis de Sales

Should you incentivise your sales staff? It is widely known that if you want to drive sales you need to incentivise your staff.  Sales men are a mercenary lot and they only respond to cash. Paying out large sales incentives is the default option. Yet a few companies that don’t believe in individual incentives.  Instead, they […]

A Splendid Waste of Time

HMS Ocean

Is management by wandering around a good thing? I was talking to a friend of mine today.  He used to work for the Royal Navy. He navigated ships in his 20’s. Apparently getting H.M.S. Ocean around the Isle of White and into the Solent without sinking some fool in a yacht is no mean feat.  Particularly […]

Adult Fun

Fun at work

This is hard work Writing a blog is no picnic It takes research; I have to read to get new ideas It is tedious; how do you get a single idea down to a clear concise point? It is boring; editing, editing and re-editing — particularly with my penchant for typos Ideas don’t suddenly materialise […]

Is it Five O’Clock Yet?

5 o clock

It’s Friday.  The weekend is nearly upon us, be honest, work is not uppermost on your mind at this precise moment in time. So to help you slide into the weekend here are 5 articles you really should read.  Think of it as management education…  Not wasting your time surfing the web. 1.  Can Japanese […]