health and safety as a way of life

Last week I was asked to cast an eye over a job specification for a facilities manager’s role. It was all fine stuff and typical of what you see in the modern world although, for me, too much couched in the management speak of corporate human resources. Ok, I know that they have a lot to comply with, as do all of us, but I come from a world where we were free of all of this stuff. I digress though, because my musing today is about one line in that job spec that required the successful candidate to be able to embed the organisation’s health and safety culture within their team and area of operations. Read more…


Regrets? I’ve had a few

With 65 looming next birthday it would be odd if there was nothing that I regretted, but the problem with regrets is that they can, at best,distract you and at worst, screw you up. So how best to handle them?

Sooner or later we all do something that we would have preferred not to. Maybe a word out of place, breaking something or just making a mistake; there are al sorts of things that we might do that we regret. How we react to such events is no more than a matter of choice though and that is what I want to look at here.

When something goes wrong if you dwell on it to any degree that part of your mind that is focussed on the event is not being used to move you forward with whatever else you need to be doing. The more you worry about something the less you can focus on the present, let alone the future.

Sports psycologists talk about being able to put an error behind you, to rid yourself of the negative thinking that can come from a setback and ficus on the next shot, point or whatever. By all means look back on something that you regret to analyse what you might do to mitigate the risk of doing the same thing again, but try to do that after the event when you can do it dispassionately.

Yes I have a few regrets, but I can’t change what is past and done I can only learn and move on. And if you thought that I was about to burst into a quick rendition of My Way,we I regret that I shan’t.

making the most of a dodgy boss

The obvious positive that you can take from working for a poor boss is that you can see how not to do it. Learning from your own mistakes and failures is great, but watching others screw up is all very good experience and you can benefit a lot from it, but there is another, often overlooked, plus side to working for a dodgy boss. Read more…


making an impact

Even those without too much ego tend to want to be well thought of and for anyone scrambling up the greasy pole of promotion it is an important factor. Sure you don’t want to be everyone’s pal because you have to make the tough calls, right?But what impact are you making with your style of leadership? Read more…


cutting cost is easy; you just have to spend a little


One of the things that leaders need to do is to make space for their followers so that they can do their jobs. Keeping the flies away as one of my early mentors used to put it, although his choice of words was a little more colourful. Read more…


when did we lose interest in the truth?

Perhaps I have been a bit slow on the uptake here, but a casual remark led to some serious discussion and some, for me anyway, disturbing thoughts for it seems that in the world today people no longer want the truth, they want their view to prevail regardless of the facts. Read more…


the leadership advice that no-one gave me

Last week I was asked what advice I could give to someone who was about to make the move up from the shop floor to their first management position. It’s forty five years since I had my own first go at taking that step and the memories of it are still painful today. Read more…