HR brings out the beast in our Guru

This week’s guru

HR brings out the beast in our Guru

In the 3 December issue, Guru waxed lyrical about a new BBC training video
called Corporate Animals, which uses behaviours from the animal kingdom as a
metaphor for how humans can be successful in the office.

Lions, for example, represent the office strategist, while bees are the team
players and squirrels are the problem solvers.

However, Guru was at a loss to identify a creature that summed up the
mysterious cocktail of animal instincts that makes him so special and asked
readers for suggestions.

He was a little taken aback by some of the responses. Stuart Atchison picked
a duck-billed platypus – "It looks odd, no-one knows what it is for and
no-one can be sure what it does."

While Martin Harvey opted for a chameleon – "Big eyes that miss
nothing, ability to blend in with your surroundings, fast moving…when
required – and that tongue !".

Other suggestions included snake (in the grass), giraffe (not afraid to
stick its neck out) squirrel (extremely careful with its nuts?) and the dodo
(extinct and of little use to anyone).

However, Guru’s favourite was from Judith Hewitt, who suggested a dung
beetle, for its tenacity, determination and creativity, despite the subject

Embarrassing work party ghosts of Christmas past

Guru was not alone in making a
spectacle of himself at the office Christmas party. Research reveals that more
than 20 per cent of workers have admitted to doing something embarrassing at
their office festive bash.

Just under half admitted to dancing inappropriately, 31 per
cent snogged a colleague and 23 per cent have been sick in public.

More than one in five people were rude to a manager and the
same number admitted to flashing a part of their anatomy.

The survey of 1,225 adults by Taylor Nelson Sofre on behalf of
Momentum Financial Services also reveals 17 per cent have broken something in
their workplace due to drunken behaviour.

Guru can’t remember much about his office party but the
photocopied image of a rather chunky pair of buttocks discovered pinned on the
staff notice board the following day looked worryingly familiar.

Teaching top dogs new tricks

During his teenage years, Guru was
fascinated by the obscure BBC2 television programme One Man and His Dog, which
involved shepherds putting their dogs and flocks through their paces.

He marvelled at the incredible rapport between man and dog and
their combined ability to control a dozen ewes through a series of gates.

So he was delighted to learn that the Mainline Border Collie
Centre is holding team-building exercises for senior executives where they will
be able to learn some of these skills.

Guru looks forward to hearing determined cries of "come by
boy/girl" ringing throughout the offices of the UK.

German posties hounded out of jobs

Talking of dogs, German postmen and
women have been given training courses on how to psycho-analyse hairy mutts.

Apparently, managers are concerned over the number of dog bites
their staff are suffering from – 20 postal staff quit in one month after being
mistaken for tasty frankfurters.

Animal experts are teaching the posties how to judge a dog’s
mood. Trainer Stefan Biegier commented: "We will show them dog expressions
and teach them to watch out for the danger signs."

Guru wishes that he had graduated from such a course before his
office Christmas party.

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