‘Tis the season to be jolly

It’s been a funny old August.  The weather has been cooler and the rain has been heavier.  Not depressingly bad but neither spirit-raisingly good.  And at the same time our usual silly season of a light-hearted news agenda has been replaced with economic doom and gloom, international conflict, and riots.  It’s all been rather serious and has left some feeling short-changed.  Whereas many o...

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Don’t panic!

Riots in London and the economic crisis have resulted in the predictable cry from opposition politicians for the leaders of the country to cut short their holidays and “get a grip”.  Aside from the rather puerile nature of such demands (is it any wonder that so many people hold politicians in such low regard when politics seems to be nothing more than verbal ping-pong?), two issues come to min...

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Ozymandias and the hacking scandal

I met a traveller from an antique land Who said: "Two vast and trunkless legs of stone Stand in the desert. Near them on the sand, Half sunk, a shattered visage lies, whose frown And wrinkled lip and sneer of cold command Tell that its sculptor well those passions read Which yet survive, stamped on these lifeless things, The hand that mocked them and the heart that ...

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Dante’s Inferno and change consultants

I’m currently crawling my way through Dante’s Inferno (in English, obviously) and have just met those souls doomed to walk forever with their heads facing the wrong way.  Walking forward but facing backwards, these are the futurologists; those who were so presumptuous as to try and foresee and foretell the future.  Considering that they’re in valley 4 of circle 8 and a long way fur...

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Leadership without a title

At the church in the village where I live is a plaque which commemorates Thomas Howard Esquire, son of the Honourable Sir Robert Howard, and grandson of the Right Honourable Thomas, Earl of Berkshire, who died on the fourth day of April, 1701. I’ve often wondered why Thomas Howard (assuming that it was him who chose his own memorial, as was common in those days) felt it important that pe...

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Executive Pay

Most people would agree that something has gone wrong with the levels of pay enjoyed by senior executives.  Certainly, it would seem that the remuneration for top people is not in line with public sentiment. Anyone who has ever been to the annual shareholders meeting of a large business will know just how vexed an issue it is.  They do, of course, get a vote.  The floor of the meeting unanimousl...

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“Social Media Will Replace Business Websites”

This was the headline to a recent story in Forbes.com.  A reader followed up by asking: "If this is really going to happen, how will it affect the practice of change management /organizational development?" Here's what I replied: Whereas it is true that nothing lasts for ever, it is also the case that rumours of the death of any channel tend to be wildly exaggerated. Just as the DVD hasn't ki...

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Trust, privacy, and control

The twitterisation of society continues apace.  US covert action and super-injunctions have found themselves outed on the ubiquitous chatter blog.  There seems no escape from it.  Indeed, many of you will have come to this blog via that channel.  It all seems very new, as if the foundations of traditional communications are being rocked.  The reality is that society has always been pretty prur...

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Change and the art of golf part lll

Well, I've done it.  I managed to get around a prestigious golf course in one piece.  Only a few weeks after picking up a club following a 10-year absence, I played 18 holes without disgracing myself.  The overall result was, as is often the case, a mixture of the good, the bad, and the ugly.  But I thoroughly enjoyed the occasion. So what did I learn?  Firstly, that despite working out in my...

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Change and the art of golf part ll

After two weeks of hitting balls at the driving range, it became very clear that all was not well.  Short irons were pretty good but long irons were frankly rubbish.  And as for the big woods?  Well, I simply couldn't hit them for toffee.  So I signed up for a lesson.  What became clear was that my grip, and consequently my swing, were incorrect.  My timing, eye for the ball and strength were...

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