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Congratulations to our fabulous founder Kerrie Dorman who won The Peoples Mentoring Champion category at the National Mentoring Awards on Friday 1st March 2019. We are so proud of her!   Well done to all of the other nominees and winners, see the full list here: Read more

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Member Articles

How The Independent Group could work for us too

Malcolm Durham

For as long as we’ve had a relatively free press, sex scandals have always made the headlines. So it’s not surprising that Me Too and the Catholic Church’s misdeeds distract us from our mundane routines. And the standards expected are hard to disagree with – unwanted advances and worse are not defensible. But it occurs to me that while we are paying attention to the high standards of care from public figures, even those who are not elected, we are not applying similarly high standards to ourselves and colleagues.

I’m sorry to say that, I am starting to form the opinion that just as “the rich get richer and the poor get poorer” so do the “famous get politer and the unknown get ruder”.

Do any of these sound familiar?

  • “Sorry. I know I was meant to turn up to the event that you had worked quite hard to organise, and I should have let you know (using the infinite communication methods available to me) that I couldn’t come, but I had to attend to an urgent matter”
  • “ Please do not reply to this message”;
  • “ …………..” which is the usual reply to a job application.

There are more subliminal instances now too. Try these?

  • ‘I know I was supposed to pay you at the end of last month but I didn’t set a reminder, use the payment processing systems at my disposal or log on to my bank account to enter a figure and press send because, well, I don’t have to. It’s a lot of hassle to chase me for payment and if you do I can switch supplier at the click of a button.’
  •  ‘I’ll do business with you on these terms and conditions. I’ve had a lawyer draft them so that they protect me in 90% of circumstances and I’ve got the resources to argue about the remaining 10%. Although a contract requires offer and acceptance – a two-way transaction -we’re bigger than you so take them or leave them.’

There are ways of fighting to redress the balance. The faceless non-communicative HR department that we encountered at interview can come to our aid if we feel harassed, bullied or overworked. Goods and services purchased via the internet can be returned and the offence caused by them can be Tweeted to the company as well as to our followers. And that serial non-attendee can be deleted from our system. Permanently.

Pressures of price, delivery times, and new competitors who can innovate so quickly are ubiquitous and have driven us to look at what we can do differently to get ahead, stay ahead or just cope. The ease with which we can get things done, and the declining cost of new services such as Uber and Facebook, may have improved our lives as consumers but we have to stay vigilant, look for our opportunity. What is the cost to our sense of well-being?

If I was working with The Independent Group I would direct their Tiggerish enthusiasm to re-set our everyday standards, along the following lines:

1.      Workers, work properly. Perfection is not the goal, diligence is. So no sending emails without the ability to reply, no unanswered emails even from those outside the organisation, nor anything else that you would consider shoddy, if you were the recipient. Instead, a desire to improve, as shown by acceptance of constructive criticism

2.      Managers manage respectfully. No endless expectations of employees, nor abuse of your ability to withhold payment from suppliers or suspend services to customers without proportional consequences.

3.      Owners act with conscience. There is a meme that an owner can act purely in their own interests and to do otherwise is to be overtaken by competitors who won’t devote so many resources to training, safety, the environment or living wages. But survey after survey demonstrates the benefit of acting in this balanced way.

Whether or not they adopt this I shall continue to use it as the template for those business people who would like me to mentor them. It worked for me and it will work for Them Too.

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Why MPs need mentors by Malcolm Durham

I’m sure you’re as heartily fed up of Brexit as I am right now. It’s inevitable that long negotiations sap our strength especially when we can’t see an end. I have also found that all deals of any complexity are off at least once so the current impasse doesn’t surprise me. What does surprise me. Read more

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Brexit: the business solution, by Malcolm Durham

Brexit wouldn’t be the first deal to be off before it’s concluded. As I wrote in WealthBeing, every deal I’ve been involved with has been off at least once. The pattern is familiar to me: general agreement, lots of to-ing and fro-ing to a place that seems agreed until someone says “I can’t accept X”.. Read more

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Malcolm Durham

Why Maro Itoje isn’t world class. Yet. By Malcolm Durham

It’s great to see England playing pretty well and being up there, in the chasing pack behind New Zealand and Ireland. It’s contended that in order to win a World Cup you need at least 5 players who are world class. Billy Vunipola (a notable absentee this season) is one and Manu Tuilagi looks to. Read more

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Malcolm Durham

Subdue and penetrate. The all black recipe for success – by Malcolm Durham

I’m not advocating sorcery. Capitalise All and Black and you will see that, just for a change, my focus is what we can learn from sport in general and rugby in particular. One of the differences between rugby and, say, football is the amount of change in its rules. Aficionados laugh at the line outs. Read more

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Malcolm Durham

Malcolm Durham member and author of WealthBeing

It’s been some six years since I invented Simon Michael Evans, David Lewis’ personification of the heroes of our economy, those who run SMEs. My intention has been to relate current events to the trials and tribulations of our group and to provide either useful lessons or light relief; and, on a good day, both.. Read more

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Malcolm Durham

Member Ken Davey blogs for the British Library on Mentoring

30 October 2017 National Mentoring Day – Ken J Davey speaks about his experience on mentoring     In light of #NationalMentoringDay last Friday 27 October –  we reached out to our network of successful business owners who have tried their hand at mentoring others within the business and corporate realm. Mentoring has many benefits. Read more

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Our Best Ever Event?

What a great morning. The experience, skills and tools on offer were terrific.

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The Fortnightlyish Update

Keep in the know of what is going on

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Create Wealth and enjoy Wellbeing – October

John Eales, former Australian rugby union captain was probably the only second row forward who also kicked goals. His range of skills was phenomenal and he was nicknamed Nobody, because “Nobody’s perfect”. In WealthBeing we recognise that almost no-one has all the skills required to run a business successfully – that even the individuals such. Read more

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