Warning: seagulls and stilettos risk

Here are a couple of quick examples of the best and the worst employment practice.

Staff at Teignbridge Council in Devon have been provided with crash helmets to protect them from kamikaze seagulls.

When staff try to collect weather data from the roof of council offices in Newton Abbot, the seagulls go nuts and attack them in squadrons.

Seagull victim David Potter said: “The big gulls swoop at my head and are backed up by half a dozen others which scream and dive-bomb me.

“It’s very distressing, but at least we now have crash helmets to protect us from being pecked about the head and face.”

How very considerate of
the council.

At the other end of the scale, we have the story of a Brazilian lady who was sacked for wearing high heels after her company, Plenarc, claimed she might fall over and then sue the business. “She was an accident waiting to happen!” raved the company lawyer.

She got her job back in the end, but the tribunal did say the company would have been within its rights to discipline her for wearing high heels.

This begs the question of what this company actually does. Does it manufacture bouncy castles or something? Enquiring minds need to know.

Next week, Guru will announce the winner of his Christmas stockings competition, so stay tuned.


Spirited dictator treads the boards

More and more companies are finding themselves forced to dump their CEOs because of financial failings, corporate scandals, stationery cupboard-based indiscretions etc. In fact, the total number of top exec terminations has risen from 1% to 5% in the past 10 years.

As we have seen, in some cases, they have gone kicking and screaming, with nothing but a few million pounds to console them, the poor devils. However, some leaders are proving harder to shift than anyone could have predicted.

Take Lenin, erstwhile leader of Communist Russia. He shuffled off this mortal coil in 1924, but it appears he still wants a piece of the action. He is allegedly haunting the museum that commemorates his life and achievements.

Museum curator, Maja Obraszowa, says staff often hear footsteps and see furniture moving, among other ghostly goings on.

“We walked into the master bedroom one morning and saw the bed had been slept in, even though the door was locked all night,” she said. “And we can often smell apple cake, which was his favourite food, even though there is no bakery near here.”

Then some school children visiting the museum said they smelled fresh coffee when looking at the dictator’s old coffee machine.

There are two lessons to be learned from this if you want to avoid corporate ‘fat cat’ scandals. First, if you want a CEO everyone likes, make sure they are willing to take their turn making the coffee Ð unlike Lenin, who seems to be doing it on the sly.

Second, don’t make the mistake Guru made when he was asked to terminate the employment of the CEO. It took ages to clean the blood off the walls of the office.


Footie fan attempts to settle the score

A couple of weeks ago, Guru tried to help out the footballing community by suggesting hooligans from Cardiff and Millwall be employed to nip over and quell the French riots.

Russian politician, Vladimir Zhirinovsky, had already said his country was ready to send over “football fans and activists with military training” to restore calm. So, as a spur to British industry, Guru thought he’d pitch the offer on the UK’s behalf. Frankly, he was disappointed the CBI wasn’t ready to back him on this one.

Sadly, you just can’t please all of the people all of the time. Disciple Tim wrote:

Dear Guru,

As a lifetime Cardiff City FC supporter (40 years of trips to Ninian Park and elsewhere), may I take exception to your suggesting us as suitable restorers of peace in Paris? This may have been the case 20 years ago, but when recently did you hear genuine reports of trouble started by Cardiff fans? Sadly (well, not really) the lads aren’t ‘up for it’ any longer.

Regards etc.

Guru referred Tim to statistics which show that last year the club had the highest number of banning orders in the UK, and also has one of the worst arrest records in the four football leagues. Looking on the bright side, at least Tim can be reassured that the lads are still ‘up for it’, and his afternoons can echo with the sound of broken bottles connecting with soft body parts if he so chooses. Happy days are here again.


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