Always send your bill at the height of your Appreciation Curve (7 comments)

Wise words from a lawyer friend of mine, noting that fees can be high but the money spent can feel more like a sound investment when you’ve just won in court.

The thought came to mind when reflecting on working with politicians, mainly council leaders, for more than two decades – and on lessons I could share with colleagues keen to understand the challenges, opportunities and warning signs.

Yes, there can be an Appreciation Curve. And yes, there is likely to come a time when you will outlive your usefulness. The key is to recognise when that day has come, not to take it personally (that can be hard as rejection does hurt) and to go quietly, taking confidences to the grave.

Posted on 28th April 2017

Making a Real Change (18 comments)

Asking people to give to charity rather than to on-street beggars is without doubt a difficult message for a local authority.

Social media storms, a flurry of calls to the press office and swift u-turns have often followed the launch of new campaigns on this subject.

Our aim was a simple one – how can our message help to make a Real Change to people’s lives. How could we support the most vulnerable in our society, while addressing some of our unique challenges in Westminster?

Posted on 24th April 2017

Say yes (8 comments)

Write a blog once or twice a year they said. That sounds easy I replied. No problem.

But there is so much good stuff out there and so much expert opinion that it’s hard to cut through the noise sometimes and to think of a subject that has not already been covered to be honest.

As part of a small team with some work to do to improve the way we do things corporately, it is also pretty easy to feel a little inadequate sometimes as you read that dreaded email that says; “Please see attached poster we have already had designed. Please can you send out a media release and send a tweet on this please….?”

So I decided to look at it from a different angle and write something for the press officers out there (that do actually still exist believe it or not!), for the one man bands, and for the small Media and Comms teams that still need to get their Leader on the front page of the local weekly!

Posted on 4th April 2017