Make my day punk

If only you were in charge you could sort this mess out. You know what needs doing and you know how to do it. But how long before you turn into Dirty Harry the Clint Eastwood anti hero  who...

Mansplaining

Mansplaining comes from combining the words “man” and “explaining”, and refers to situations where a person (typically a man) explains something to someone else (typically a woman), often in a...

A failure of leadership

The Virgin take over of health and adult social services in Bath has received little media coverage. This is a hugely significant  development. As a former director I am very...

Vampire managers

  Some chief executives want blood. They demand loyalty, ruthlessness and total commitment. Whether deliberately or by default they creat a culture of intoxicating machismo. The aim is...

How to kill enthusiasm and stifle initiative

  I once stood up at a large meeting of managers to announce that the social service department was going for Investors In People (IIP) accreditation for the whole department. I said...

The nature of the game

The relationship between a local authority director and their chief executive is like that between a premiership goal keeper and his manager. We all know how much a manager values a safe pair...

What was once successful now is not

  Charismatic and autocratic have had their day - well almost. Driven by austerity and made fashionable by the success of a high profile few this type of leadership was in demand. This was...

The tail of a lion or the head of a mouse

  Do you want to be the tail of a lion or the head of a mouse? Strange question and the answer is probably neither. This may be an unusual way of phrasing a very real dilemma for staff...

Bridge on the River Kwai

  The role of the senior manager in local government involves leadership in a political environment. You don't decide policy you don't so much shape strategy as influence and...

When should a leader go?

  Should I stay or should I go? It's the leadership question of the moment. The leader of the opposition is for staying despite an over whelming vote of no confidence, the Prime...