Wednesday, March 28, 2007

If you can't beat them, join them
as Kent council take on the world

This is one story I was hoping to keep, to myself, but unfortunately, the political editor of Kent Messenger Group, Paul Francis must have spotted the discreet ad, placed in this week's Sunday Times appointments section advertising the position of managing director of environment and regeneration for Kent council see Kent Online.

I was rather hoping, that few would spot the quarter page advertisement, on the back page, and that I might have a clear run for the position. I'd even started to memorise some bullshot phrases such as ''commitment to excellence'' ''outcomes-orientated individual'' ''we are on a journey of continual improvement'' ''gateway to Europe''.

Well life's his full of disappointments, and I assume that every man and his dog is now chasing, this opportunity despite the rather modest potential £170,000 pay package.

I find it rather surprising that Kent council, which is after all a four-star organisation, has to rely on the executive resourcing company VEREDUS to recruit staff, given the calibre of the already highly paid management.

Of course I would imagine that executive resourcing companies don't come cheap and would guess that your Kent council, will probably wave goodbye to the better part of 20 grand on this exercise.

Finally I worry about organisations that claim or aspire to be world class, a couple that spring to mind are British Telecom, who frequently have difficulty answering their own telephones, and British Airways who've always struck me as just too damned superior to have to deal with the general public (still I speak from the economy class end of the world).

PS Had I been in charge of regeneration at the time Kent council came up with the idea of flying Manston to Virginia, my response would have been something like, "are you !=*?ing mad'' that alone would have been worth £300,000. Still I doubt that sort of commonsense approach is quite what they're looking for.

If you think you can do the job click here


  1. Only recently the opposition at KCC was complaining bitterly that Peter Gilroys post was not advertised and subject to real competition. Now, when a senior post is, KCC are criticised again. What is that saying about not being able to please all the people all the time?

  2. Chris
    I don't act on or side with any political party. I do however point the finger to inept handling of the public interest whether its labour more concerned with gambling than people or Tories taking reckless gambles with hard earnt cash.

    I also appreciate that those who stand for public office and serve as councillors are just doing there best as I know you do.

    However that does not mean that critism is wrong. C.Exec post should have been open to competition and an authority of KCC size should be competent to recruit staff.

  3. Tony you misunderstand me. I am very comfortable with the idea of using a recruitment agency for senior staff, it is quite usual for large organisations to do so. I do not ascribe any politics to you - my comment was ironic rather than iconclastic.

  4. shame then that all the while these "big money"posts are up for grabs libraries are losing a lot of posts mainly community is a wicked shame.these people are highly qualified decent sorts who make a real differance to helping the public and schools benifit from library services.i use the library services a lot and they are being completly makes me very angry and the fat cats get fatter..

  5. Anon 2:27 it is a shame that people at the coal face or book shelf in this case are being placed on the scrap heap, seeing what those at the top of the heap are capable of I would imagine that any one of these libariains would a be more knowledgeable and b have a some commonsence.

  6. SOO true tony.these people do a great service some of them having dedicated 20 or 30 years to the library services just to be thrown on the scrap heap,whilst those "at the top"continue to draw huge salaries for weilding the axe..grrr