One of my more tiresome three-pint rant subjects is about the tunnel vision of HR professionals – and of managers generally. Most are able to pontificate at length about the minutiae of their chosen fields but many display a woeful lack of any broader perspective. Senior managers should have at least a rudimentary understanding of politics and economics. At the moment, given what is about to happen, this is especially important for managers in the public sector. Sadly, though, I often meet intelligent people with responsibility for huge budgets who rarely read a newspaper from one week to the next and seem to have no clue about the forces shaping the future of their organisations.
Surely executives in public sector organisation should have some understanding of how the economy works, why the public debt and deficit has ballooned and what the impact of that is likely to be.
It’s possible that the above paragraphs may simply be a very long-winded justification for the two hours I wrote off earlier this week reading the Freethinking Economist. Its author Giles Wilkes has some useful insights and most of his pieces are accessible to non-economists like me. True, some of them require reading several times before you get the point but others are wonderfully succinct, like this neat illustration of the role the collapse of the UK’s tax revenues played in creating the ballooning deficit. If you want a more detailed analysis of the UK’s fiscal position, this paper is written in language a lay-person can just about understand.
Yesterday, Giles had a fascinating take on why the Euro isn’t really collapsing and why Cameron and Clegg can’t take all the credit for the improvement in government debt prices.
I have added Freethinking Economist to the blogroll on the right. I thought he was there already but that must have been another of my thought-I-did-but-didn’ts.
Stop by his blog every now and then; it will give you some food for thought. And if anyone hassles you about the amount of time you are spending reading blogs, I have a ready-made argument for you at the top of the page.