The Judge RANTS!
P(l)ay Nicely, Now!
If you, Mr, Mrs and Ms UK Taxpayer, ever wondered how some of your
money is spent, I can give you an example.
As I've adverted to before, I work in a major branch of the home
civil service. On the Departmental intranet back in mid-April, I saw
"Dealing With The Cultural Change Aspects Of Desk Sharing
"The cultural change consultants supporting the move to desk
sharing are offering 2 types of support event, Preparation workshops
aimed at the individual and Etiquette workshops for teams."
(Note the inappropriate use of Capital Letters: always the sure
sign of the self-important Tit)
It appears that, in one of the Depratment's headquarters buildings,
things have come to such a pretty state that ten very senior members of
staff are having to share eight desks between them. Hence, presumably,
the need to train them. After all, we've only been doing it in the
'front-line' offices for, ooh, fifteen to twenty years now.
The Depratment has one of those 'feedback' mechanisms whereby you
can e-mail questions to the grands fromages, and they will
So, on April 18, I asked the following questions:
- What is a 'cultural change consultant', and what do they do?
- Are the consultants in this exercise in-house or brought in from
the private sector?
- If from the private sector, how can <name of Department here>
justify the cost at a time when front-line...activities are being
starved of resources...?
- Why are staff in <location of big-wigs' office> deemed
specially in need of 90-minute workshops on the subject?
- Are there plans to roll out similar support to local offices
where desk-sharing is far more prevalent, where space is far more at a
premium, where failures in implementation would be far more detrimental
to the Department's 'outcomes', and where no such support has (to my
knowledge) been offered to date?
That was April 18. By late May, I still hadn't had a reply, so I
resubmitted the questions.
Early July. Still no response. Perhaps even the Grand Masters Of
Obfuscation can't come up with a form of words for it.
I think it only fair, then, that I let you know that this
is one of the ways in which Your Tax Pounds Are At Work.
(This public service broadcast is dedicated to Neil Hiatt)