Posts Tagged ‘executive board’

What the next few weeks have in store for Charles Allen

16/03/2012, 07:30:34 AM

by Atul Hatwal

Charles Allen, welcome to the spotlight. You might have thought you were already high profile, after all running ITV and EMI made you a fixture in the business pages. And your turn on Channel 4’s the Secret Millionaire was genuinely touching.

But all of that is as nothing compared to what you will experience as  chair of the Labour party’s executive board.

As you start your new role, you should be aware of the two pitfalls that perennially await ingénue businessmen keen to apply their acumen to the political world.

First, what works in business does not apply in politics. Second, the media are coming.

Politicians frequently muse about how good it would be to apply business practice to politics and improve efficiency. They do this because they have never worked in business, beyond perhaps a temporary sinecure in public affairs en route to a parliamentary seat.

Most politicians can barely run a bath, let alone any form of enterprise. Executive management as you understand it is almost non-existent. Just look at the how Labour party restructure has been managed so far.

But politicians are not an untalented breed and there’s a reason they have evolved in a particular way.

In business, all relationships are underpinned by money. Whether its shareholders and their dividends, employees and their wages or suppliers and their fees, power is held by the he or she who holds the purse strings.

In politics, most things that matter are based on goodwill.


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