Faking Rapport

I am in that hallowed temple of white goods, John Lewis. My quest is to replace a leaking, hopelessly inefficient American-style fridge-freezer that has clearly had its day. I have no idea why one model is more than double the price of another or what features I should be looking for, since the world of … Read the rest >>

What makes a workshop work?

 

Nodding off recently in a hot, stuffy room while the presenter droned through 70 slides has got me thinking yet again about what makes a workshop work. So many times something billed as a ‘workshop’ is actually just a series of lectures with a few feeble activities sprinkled in as a nod to interaction. … Read the rest >>

CV Lies: don’t!

A senior City barrister has been caught telling gargantuan whoppers about his CV. He did not have a Masters from Harvard, he was not at Balliol College as an undergraduate, he did not get a 1st class honours degree from UEA, nor had he been a member of the New York or Irish Bars. Oh, … Read the rest >>

The Pointlessness of a Career Plan

Many of my coaching clients report feeling guilty about their failure to have a career plan. The idea persists that this is something that every respectable and modestly ambitious professional person needs to have. Somewhere they have the image of that fiercely dedicated genius who knows by the age of 6 that they are going … Read the rest >>

Why career risk can be a good idea

My coaching client B has been offered a job after six troubling months of searching while unemployed, after leaving her previous job abruptly – and not on good terms. It meets all her criteria: challenging work, respected organization, the work easily within her competence, good salary. But she is hesitating. Why? It does not have … Read the rest >>

Job-search methods that work

Many people don’t realise that far more jobs are found through the informal than the formal jobs market. The formal market is what you see in recruitment agencies, vacancies advertised on employers’ own websites, newspaper ads and so on. The informal market is one where the job is never advertised but is filled through personal … Read the rest >>

Miliband’s Dilemma

It’s never easy being leader of a Party in opposition, but poor Ed Miliband is having an unusually tough time. As if it wasn’t bad enough that a junior Shadow colleague had to make an embarrassing climbdown because he didn’t know the difference between Kent and Essex, then Ed had eggs thrown at him and … Read the rest >>

Alan Partridge and Motivation at Work

Along with a cinema full of other devotees, I laughed helplessly throughout Alan Partridge: Alpha Papa. There he is, vain pout intact. We watch, cringing and snorting at his crassness, knowing that he may, albeit ever so dimly, be aware of his own disastrous proneness to failure. Alan is at his mindless best exchanging mid-morning … Read the rest >>

The Tendering Trap

What a hopelessly clumsy process tendering is. We now have the allegedly new and reformed NHS 111 service in disarray. NHS Direct have withdrawn from the contract because they have discovered that it is unsustainable. The pressure to put in a cheap bid quickly revealed that they were heading for financial disaster – calls took … Read the rest >>