French labour relations blown out of proportion

This week’s guru

French labour relations blown out of proportion

Guru waxed lyrical last week on the cultural differences between English and
French business. A new report showed despite all being Europeans there is still
mutual distrust.

Well, let’s hope that English workers share this suspicion because if
they’re influenced by the French approach to industrial relations then we’re
all in trouble.

Staff at a microwave factory in Cormelles-le-Royal were so angry at the
financial troubles of the parent company – Moulinex – that they set fire to the
building last week.

But not content with this, they then threatened to blow up the rest with
makeshift bombs, and kidnapped a government mediator in Paris to push for
better redundancy packages. "It’s just another stage in the labour
relations," was the authorities’ surprising response.

The cap fits, but the face doesn’t

Guru wanted to be a TV reporter when he first started in journalism many
years ago. Unfortunately, after his first on-the-scene report he was told that
he had a face for radio. Then after embarking on a career as the news anchorman
at a local radio station, he was told he had a voice for print.

So Guru has a lot of sympathy for the youngster who tried to get a job at
his local Kentucky Fried Chicken in Newcastle, only to be told that his face
wasn’t suitable for working behind a till. The red-headed 18-year-old claimed
he was told to look for outdoor work, which is a bit rich considering Colonel
Saunders is hardly a catwalk model.

Reward your staff with gold

How can Government quangos compete for talent with spiralling bonuses and
share options in the City? Pay staff in gold bullion, of course.

It was revealed last week that the BBC decided to remunerate one valued
member of staff with gold – apparently it used to be a very tax efficient
technique. But before you force your boss to high tail it to Hatton Garden,
Guru warns you that the authorities have already closed this loophole.

MPs scream for nice ice cream

Guru is glad to see MPs have finally got their priorities right, and are no
longer wasting their time reading through the small print of the newly released
Employment Bill.

A motion has been signed by 17 MPs, calling for Mr Creemy Ice Cream to be
served in the Commons dining rooms.

Dancing queens wanted, apply within

Guru is worried about the launch of a new nightclub in Harrogate. A month on
from the annual CIPD conference, Guru was just starting to forget all the
drunken incidents in which he embarrassed himself when he found out that worse
could be in store for him next year.

In October, HR professionals were subjected to an Abba tribute band but next
year there will be a different kind of dancing queen. Lap dancing chain
Spearmint Rhino is opening its doors in the town this week and is looking for
30 staff to join its ranks. Guru is not the only concerned party about the new
residents – the local job centre has banned the lap dancing firm from
advertising for fear of embarrassing its job seekers.

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