I watched the spectacle of ‘hopeful man’ last night, always entertaining. I don’t know what it is that makes men so optimistic especially in the face of such adversity.
So last night we had a man who was a number of years older than me. This man carried significantly more mass and less hair than me. His partner for the evening was mid twenties and very good looking. What is it that makes me say that he was optimistic? Could he not simply have been sharing a bottle of wine with a colleague?
The give away came when the young lady took a toilet break. Her partner leapt to the bar to procure a further bottle of wine, as quickly as possible. By the time his partner had returned he was explaining how ‘they just served me without me asking’.
The look on his young partner’s face said it all. I don’t know what facet of her career justified the evening but it was certainly a task. I am sure that the young lady returned to her room and called her partner bemoaning the long evening. I am equally sure that her partner collapsed on the bed convinced he was a step closer to company.
Point of note: when they say that power is an aphrodisiac they don’t mean area manager type power.
In other news, I walked into a meeting today and from the minute introductions were made I realised nothing would be achieved. The reason wasn’t conflicting ideas or team dynamics it was something much harder to overcome. There were two separate consultancy firms represented and there are no known cases where this has resulted in progress.
It is quite amazing to watch the carefully coreographed interaction between these people. The consultant’s language makes the discourse seem so energetic and vigorous whilst actually going in circles. The battle of the buzz words ensures that everybody feels that they have achieved, added value and been a team player. The reality, of course, is that the consultant’s have taken another days money in exchange for platitudes.
If you think my view of consultant’s is jaded then let me just say that I have overhead their planning sessions. If you truly want to know how to beat cancer I would suggest that you wouldn’t go far wrong starting with consultants. Brought in by organisations to change and improve the business they quickly expand their scope and become entrenched. No sooner than they are established they start calling in reinforcements, almost breeding.
Part of the skill set of a consultant is to always be busy. They find things to do and are most obliging in taking on more work. Invaribly consultants will be funded centrally so there is no visibility of true cost. Having invaded the host business they become an intrinsic part and people are scared to remove them. When the host realises the cost and moves to remove the consultants they quickly morph into smaller offshoots, rebranding themselves to grow another day.
The lesson for today? Human error prevention, with such gems as ‘tiredness moves you into the error making region’. The big sell, as always, is that other industries already do this. You are behind the times of course but the consultant can help you change your ways. Like small children the business leaders salvitate over the magic bullets that have helped other companies or industries. The truth is that we have different processes because we have different priorities and risks. I guess consultants are just expensive fairytales.