This week’s guru

Oracle’s talking double dutch over HR’s impact

– Guru travelled all the way to Amsterdam only to hear that, in a perfect
world, there would be no such thing as HR professionals.

Likening HR to estate agents and lawyers, IT giant Oracle’s vice-president
of HR claimed business would be better off without us. Apparently, managers
can’t blow their noses without having to talk to us, which undermines their
abilities. Put simply, HR gets in the way, delegates heard at the ENG

Well Guru disagrees. If HR is working in an environment such as at Oracle,
where it is only seen as a cost and a necessary evil then it will never be
allowed to fully contribute. At organisations that have cottoned on to the
importance of talent and strategy to business success, however – see Personnel
Today’s current ‘Delivering HR Strategy’ series (see p20) – HR can be an
enabler not a barrier.

The only time Guru gets in the way of line managers is when he elbows his
way to the bar on a corporate jolly.

– Guru received grave news this week when the powers-that-be ordained he
must get his best shiny-bottomed suit out and lug it to Harrogate for the
industry’s annual outing.

What’s worse, he is being forced to do his bit on the Personnel Today stand
(B60). Guru has been told to stand there and be nice to people.

Guru appeals to anyone out there to make their protests felt at this
flagrant exploitation of the ‘any other duties’ in his contract by e-mailing

Free lunch related to the bench

It has been said that there is no such thing as a free lunch. Nonsense. For
many years Guru has been working his way round the eateries of London proving
this theory completely redundant.

The ‘fictional’ mouse spotted under the restaurant table, the stray hair
cunningly placed in the soup and the Michael Winner disguise kit have all
helped to secure gastronomic freebies. However, Guru’s best source of
charge-free dining is now under threat after the Financial Times cut its expense
budget last week, banning staff from wining and dining key contacts.

It brings an end to Guru’s weekly tradition of spouting some old rubbish to
a journalist in exchange for a good trough.

Sales of the FT will surely plummet while the UK’s high streets become
jammed at lunchtime with industry’s movers and shakers seeking out the best
value meal deals.

It’s a fare cop for driver Mulopo

Personnel Today reported in August on the need for HR departments to review
their policies covering company car drivers as an increasing number are being
caught on CCTV speeding, committing parking offences and even kerb crawling.

Guru thought it unlikely that anyone would be so stupid as to
try and pick up a lady of the night in a company vehicle (Guru had a ‘friend’
who would hotwire one of his colleagues’ cars before undertaking such shady
activities), so was astonished to read about a bus driver who was caught kerb
crawling in his double decker after finishing his shift.

Everisto Mulopo was nicked when he tried to proposition an
undercover officer.

Mulopo was subsequently fined £300 by magistrates and sacked by
his employer London United Busways.

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