Frank Sinatra, Mr Teflon and the Professor

They use to call him Frank Sinatra because he always did it his way. Trying to explain the importance of following the correct procedures whether that be in recruitment, tackling absenteeism or taking disciplinary measures was a frustrating experience. Old blue eyes didn’t ask for advice and  didn’t take it. Either that or he would go round the HR team until he receive the advice he want to hear. 

Mr Teflon so called because despite his involvement in a number of troubled restructurings and failed projects no blame was ever attached to him-nothing stuck.

If things don’t go to plan this senior manager isn’t going to carry the can. If the restructuring has dragged on long past the original time scale bogged down in appeals and disputes over redeployments then he has no problem blaming HR for bad advise,  being too soft or not up to the task. 


The professor. Not for them the standard JD or person specification they have a long list of additional requirements for their ideal candidate, trouble is no one ticks all the boxes so the post is re advertised more than once. Either that or influenced by a recent research paper on inclusivity they do away with desirable requirements and have only the minimum essential requirements with the result there is no way to short list down to a manageable number of candidates to interview. What should have taken the one day put aside for interviews turns into a week. The Professor has the right intentions but fails to appreciate the need to be pragmatic. Never more so than when it comes to Equality and Diversity. The desire for balanced interview panels sets unrealistic expectations as HR are asked to put together an interview panel balance in gender, race/faith, disability and sexuality. 


Blair Mcpherson former Director ,author and blogger

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