TUC dome-trippers an added attraction

• News that the TUC is in discussion with the Dome organisers to rent the
much-maligned exhibition for the International Day of the Worker on 1 May is a
bit of a coup for the union movement.

It will certainly irritate the establishment, still smarting from their
three-hour queue for the millennium night celebration. "A festival of
socialism in a government-sponsored tent – whatever next?" They will be
muttering into their gin and tonics.

But if the Dome’s teething troubles are still in evidence come the big day,
the event will also provide a valuable history lesson to the nation’s youth.

Indeed, a likely spectacle at the event could be as rare as a solar eclipse
in the 21st Century. Because if there are big queues outside, it will be the
nearest we are likely to get to a mass picket ever again.

When winning on people issues just isn’t enough

• While stumbling into work last week, I happened to catch a London radio
station’s "win a once-in-a-lifetime holiday" phone-in competition.

The excited contestant was a British Telecom personnel manager and so
overcome was she at having a chance to win the trip, she confessed (to about
three million listeners) that she was in fact skiving off work to make the
call.

And a very successful bunk it proved to be too, as she won the holiday to
California. So what will be her response in future, one wonders, if a member of
staff at a return-to-work interview says "well, I was on Countdown on
Tuesday and had to call the Who wants to be a millionaire? hotline all day
Wednesday".

HR institute goes under down under

• The IPD is in rude good health at present, to the extent that it could run
for a whole year on its reserves of cash without any difficulty. But on the
other side of the world, one of its peers is not in such good shape.

The Australian Human Resources Institute and its assets go under the
auctioneer’s hammer next week after going about £400,000 into the red.

The chief executive has gone, and mounting concerns in the boardroom about
staff upheaval and cost overruns have led to the closure of offices around
Australia and the dismissal of dozens of staff.

The nightmare can be traced back to an ambitious expansion programme
undertaken by the AHRI following a report from a firm of management
consultants.

Strewth! You would have thought that if anyone was to know the dangers of
that route, it would be a human resources institute.

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