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The ladies of pleasure….



I’m not a huge fan of Valentine’s Day if the truth be known.  I’m not against expressing love or taking time out to think about the special person in your life. But I am against the way that 14th February has essentially become one commercial glitz fest of the most tacky proportions.  The equation of love with quantum of giving just seems sick.

If you’re on Twitter and follow me at all, you’ll also know that I am not against throwing my love around…some would say a little too freely!  Although as Mrs. HRD says, “They only like you because you’re anonymous……if they REALLY knew you…..” And that of course is what most realtionships are like….not the fluffy teddybears with hearts and the balloons with expressions of foreverness….but a more measured, deadpan appraisal.

I know that being Valentine’s Daythere will be a plethora of posts about love and community and blah blah blah blah. But  I am a giver, so what can I do?  I’m not going to a general splurge of, “I love you all” because quite frankly it wouldn’t be true……but if there is an opportunity to highlight a couple of people….well then I’d be a fool not to step right in…..

Lena Maurer writes a blog called Dumb and Glamorous Ph.D which is about life and food and philosophy and music and fairly much everything that isn’t HR.  On its own that is a great thing and reason to be recommended.  Add to that, however, that Lena was one of the first people to read my blog in the early days and comment and provide encouragement and support.  Anyone who writes a blog will know that comments are one of the things that keeps you going.  You can look at the stats all that you like and you can see that people are reading or viewing, but who the hell are they and what do they think about you and the rubbish you’re writing?  Until they take the time to comment and let you know then you’re in the dark.  And one comment tends to breed further comments and therefore, the people that were on my previous site early doors commenting and supporting when there were very few around get my love and affection.

Emma P. writes a blog called Onatrainagain.  Emma is relatively new to the world of blogs and blogging.  I’d like to think that I had a small hand in her doing so, although that isn’t the reasons for including her here.  I had a chat with Emma on Skype when she was thinking on setting up the blog, we did some of the technical jiggery-pokery at the time and we were talking about content.  My advice to Emma was not to restrict her content to HR related matters, although she is an HR pro, but to allow herself to walk outside of that realm if her instinct took her.  Not only has she been one of the most prolific bloggers to come onto the scene, but she has written some of the most powerful personal posts I have read in a while.  That and she is one of the very few people who have seen me, but I haven’t seen them. Something to do with Zumba apparently…..

Is this one cheating? Ahh bugger it, like I care. So Lisa Scales doesn’t really blog, but she is a massive supporter of those that do through commenting and retweeting links and that is a hugely important part of the community that is often over looked.  Lisa is also, without doubt, the funniest person I have met in many, many, many years.  Her presence in a room is enough to make me grin from ear to ear….and also normally run for cover….she is a little over excitable and I tend to be on a slower burn when I’m meeting people.  But the reason that I wanted to mention Lisa is her wholehearted and total commitment to being both a successful business woman and adoring mother. I know that these things are hard to balance and that they can cause heartache and pain. But I also know that Lisa manages to achieve them in spades.  Even if it doesn’t always feel that way.

I’ve written about Corporate Daycare before, in fact she appeared in my end of year awards as the “Blog I wished I wrote” and to be honest, I am rehashing old ground here because that is still absolutely the case and is one of the main reasons that I include her here (as well as the fact that she has a thing for Englishmen and I may want to visit Canada at some point and could do with cheap lodgings and a hot meal). But her blog is going into it’s sixth year. Yes six! and all of us Johnnie-come-latelys can button it and respect her authoritah….

Ailsa Suttie and I first started talking before she was Ailsa Suttie.  Well clearly she was Ailsa, but she was, like me, anonymous.  Since that point she has come out of the closet and started blogging. I’ve met Ailsa and I find her natural and incredibly easy to get on with.  Ailsa is taking a massive step this year. For being that brave she deserves love and support. And the fact that when I was trying to leave the #ConnectingHR tweet up, she persuaded me to stay for a quick dram….I’m sooooo easy, but then you knew that didn’t you!

So Alison Chisnell is another one of the long lost of new and up and coming bloggers from the UK writing about the workplace and their lives.  In a funny way Alison reminds me of Trish McFarlane (in an online sense only you’ll understand) with her energy and passion and support for the community. I’m expecting big things of Alison, which might be wholly unfair, but then again no-one said that life was fair did they?  The community needs people to take it by the scruff of the neck and people who know what they are talking about because they do the do…..rather than just talking the do.  Alison is an HR pro, a mum, a blogger and one to watch. That is all.

I don’t know Beth Mayes so well. I haven’t met her but I do know her husband James.  For that alone she deserves mention here, not many people have to put up with so much 🙂 . But Beth started blogging last month and is already coming up with some really interesting and diverse content that spans HR and beyond. Beth is also a self confessed geek….which is great because so am I and having seen James’ gadgets I know that she is truly married to the right man!  And writing about HR from a third sector perspective, like Emma P also makes an exciting difference.

There are clearly a number of other people that I could and should mention, the wonderful Sarah Knight back from climbing Kili, Lousie Triance for her work on bringing recruiters together, my favourite pocket rocket Charlie Duff, Sara Headworth for being just amazing, Wendy Jacob for her ongoing humor……………………..and many many more.

I guess the point that I wanted to make is that, if you listen to the loud voices on the internet and certainly in the HR and Recruitment fields, you’ll hear predominantly middle aged white men. But look beyond the bravado and the swinging dicks and you will hear a whole host of sensible, educated, articulate women making their views heard….whilst also balancing caeer and home without anuy fuss or nonsense.

To all of them and to you, I wish a very happy 14th February. Ladies, keep doing what you do.

UPDATE: It has been (surprisingly) very diplomatically pointed out to me that I of course neglected to mention the one and only BettyBBlonde….I shall now go to the corner and hang my head in shame….I knew this post was more trouble than it was worth….

Conversation with TheHRD



HRD: Oi dickead!

Me: …..excuse me?

HRD: You heard me arsehole…..

Me: What? What is it?

HRD: Why have you been ignoring me?

Me: I haven’t….I’ve just….been…..busy…

HRD: Busy? My bollocks. You’ve been fucking around is what you’ve been….dick!

Me: Can you stop calling me that?

HRD: Fuck off.  You need to get some focus back boy.  Do you really think anyone cares about your British bumhole ballbags? Or your whining on about your kids? You’re coming across as a complete pussy. You idiot.  People don’t give a shit about that stuff.

Me: I thought they’d gone quite well…..

HRD: That’s because your head is so far up your own arse you get butterflies when you blink. People come here to read me…..not that whining old crap.  I’m the star turn. I’m the attraction. I’m all you’ve fucking got you short-sighted fuckwit.

Me: You’re not real…so you can’t be…your just a figment of my imagination.

HRD: Oh really? So why the fuck are you having a conversation with me then you muppet?

Me: Sometimes I just want to…….do other stuff…..

HRD: ……….you total fucking plank. “Sometimes I want to do other stuff!” Haven’t you realised….it doesn’t matter what YOU want… is what THEY want that matters…’re just a performing dog…and a fucking badly trained one at that.

Me: Why are you being like this?

HRD: Give me fucking strength……..Why am I being like this????? Because YOU made me like this you spineless excuse of man……YOU!

Me: I’m not sure I like you anymore.

HRD: Of course you don’t. THAT IS THE WHOLE FUCKING POINT! You’re not supposed to like me, people don’t like me!

Me: I never intended you to be like this, that was never the idea…..but then……I suppose…..if I made you……

HRD: Fuckadoodle-do…..Finally! That’s it…..come on…’re starting to think again now…..come on dickwipe……!

Me: If I made you……..then surely…… I can kill you…………?

HRD: BINGO! We have a winner…………..there’s only one problem though isn’t there shithead?



The strength to be different



Hey….how are you? How is Tuesday treating you? A big day or just another boring midweek? I guess that is for you to decide.

You’ll be surprised at how much you CAN decide.  The world is full of people who will tell you what you can’t do. Ironically they’ll also tell you what you should do. And even sometimes how to do it.  But in honesty they have no idea, they’re just scared and huddling together for the security that mediocrity and conformity brings.  Strength comes from difference.  The way you think, the way you behave, the way in which you treat people.  Always have the strength to be different…..

From the school playground to the floors of the corporate towers, you’ll find them there, you’ll feel the pressure.  And sometimes you’ll buckle.  We all do.  But if you realise that you are going with the flow, then at least you are alive and thinking and aware. And that will give you the strength to continue your journey again.  To plot your own course in life, to stay true to your instincts, to stay true to yourself.

I remember when you stopped wearing your favourite jumper, because the other kids picked on you. Because it was purple.  Do you remember the conversation we had then about the courage to be yourself?  When  you started Taekwondo when the other kids were all playing football. And they teased you.  Funny that they no longer tease a black belt….don’t you think?  And as you grow up into a strong confident young man, I see you having the courage to be yourself.  A funny, strong, handsome, clever young man with the world at his feet.

The next few years are going to bring you choices. There will be times when things don’t go your way and I won’t always be there to talk it through or to help.  You’re going to have to make those calls on your own and to take the consequences that come with your decisions.  The way that you deal with these will set you up well for the rest of your life.

Everything I see tells me you will take it all in your stride.  Every day I burst with pride. And each step of the way I will be on your side come what may.

Be strong. Be humble. Be gracious. And beyond everything else. Be yourself.

Happy birthday dude. I love you.

New kid on the block



When I started blogging a couple of years ago, one of the things that really frustrated me was the ability to find new blogs and bloggers.  Getting onto Twitter was a help and led to me finding a number of other blogs. But then the other problem was keeping up to date.  There are times when I see a post being promoted on Twitter and I’m grateful that I was there at the right time to read it, but I’m sure for each one I catch, there are a hundred that I miss.  I tried Google Reader for a while but then the posts piled up and I didn’t have time and so I started to do mass deletes…..which kind of defeated the point.

So a little while ago I started working on a project to try to rectify this. I’m not technically minded at all and so it was always going to be a struggle. Fortunately I had some help and support. And today, I’m pleased to say that I can unveil the results of that project….

British business bloggers, or Bbb as it has become affectionately known. A site aimed to bring together those people blogging about business in Britain…”simples” as a certain rodent would say!  The site works through RSS feed, meaning that the content remains on the blogger’s own site and that the only way to read the full post or to comment is by visiting the site.  All that we ask in return is that people display a logo on their blog (that looks a bit like the one above).

Why bother? Well a couple of reasons really.  Firstly, to try to deal with the situation I explained above….to help readers find new blogs on topics that they are interested in. Secondly, to help bloggers grow their audience through sharing readers… read a blog that is part of the community, click on the logo and find other blogs that you might also like….etc.  Blogging shouldn’t be a competitive sport and if you are writing good content, then readers will always come back, the insecurity that being part of a community might somehow dilute your own impact or importance is, in my mind, short-sighted and counter productive.

It is a work in progress, it isn’t totally where I hope it will end up…but I’m proud of the work. I hope you like it too.  If you are a blogger and you fancy helping me with this project, then you can join here.  If you are a reader, then please go and check out the other fantastic blogs on there. And PLEASE, tell people. Talk about it, like it or hate it. If you have feedback then let me know, this isn’t all about me, this is a completely different project and one that I would love to be embraced and supported by others.

You can find the site here:

You can register here:

And you can follow us on Twitter here:

Note: If you see that I have already included your blog on the site as part of testing and you don’t want to participate then please let me know and I will take you off immediately. I’ve tried to contact everyone individually, but some may have fallen through or got lost or misdirected.

Last word



Just a short one from me today…I’ve been away all week on business and I’m running out of things to say to people having been shaking hands and kissing babies for what feels like forever.

The observant amongst you will have worked out that I don’t normally post on a Friday, so this is the last post of the week. And I wanted to tell you that on Monday I am going to make an announcement about something that I am really excited about.  Will you be? Well who the hell knows?

But I can tell you, that you won’t know unless you check back in on Monday to find out….

So see you then? I hope so.

Tru Blue



Those of you that have been hanging around here for any period of time will know that, the start of my relationship with @billboorman wasn’t the smoothest of beginnings.  I wouldn’t have included him the category of one of those people who I was supposed to meet.  But since that point I’ve met Bill on a couple of occasions and we get on pretty well I think.  We hail from the same part of the country and can both be stubborn intransigent arseholes when we put our mind to it.  And I admire that in Bill.

For those of you that don’t know, Bill is also the co-founder of the #tru events, the next of which is #truLondon which takes place over 16th, 17th and 18th of February.  I’ve never been to one, but I’m told by people who know about this sort of shit, that they are good, informative and interesting events.  That said, the previous ones will pale into insignificance compared to this one.


Because I’m going to be there.  And what’s more…..I’m doing what I’m told is called a track.  And whats more…..are you wetting yourselves with excitement yet? I’m doing it with Laurie Ruettimann.

What are we talking about? Well you’ll have to come along to find out (or read Bill’s blog where he has already spilled the beans).  But lets put it this way, if you are in recruitment, we may not be on your Christmas card list post event. But lets face it, if you are in recruitment you weren’t on our Christmas card list before the event. So quid pro quo.

I’ve never been to an unConference before and I’ve never run a track.  I’m told it involves me standing around talking shit and being provocative.  You couldn’t find a candidate more perfectly qualified.

So if you are attending, then I look forward to seeing you there. I’ll be the one hiding in the shadows.  If you’re not attending, I think there are still a very small number of tickets left.  One of them has your name on it.  Go on, you know you want to…..

Fate mate



So how about this….what if, and indulge me for a moment, what if there are people out there, people in the world that you are absolutely supposed to meet?

Have you ever had that feeling when you meet someone and with a matter of minutes it feels like you have known them for a whole load longer?  You get their humour, you have shared points of reference, shared interests.

Now that could be luck right? I mean when you think about all the people that you meet in life.  Or could it be something other than that?

And if you think about it doesn’t it make it much more interesting to get up in the morning knowing that today might be the day when you meet another?

One of those people you were supposed to meet.