Brian's Brief Encounters

This is an Unofficial Kaffe Fassett fanzine. Brought to you from a Leafy Suburb of the Throbbing Metropolis.

Sunday, July 31, 2005

A Surfeit Of Surveys

I’m not the only one seeking answers.

The ‘Together’ Team are at it too.

I’ve recently received my eagerly awaited copy of their Values Consultation questionnaire. If you haven’t yet got your copy, please seek one out. For those of you that have them, think twice before you reach for the ‘delete’ key. Your opinion is important. Someone’s promotion may rely on it.

In urging my colleagues to have their anonymous say, I’ve been met by a few puzzled looks. I agree it is a bit wordy. To assist you I’ve translated the first (of six) sections into Job-speak. Just to give you the general idea.

This is the section titled:-

“We will commit to Open and Honest Dialogue”

Who sniggered? You’re not helping.

In common with all six sections, the next line reads:-

“In living this value, we will:”

Now, I know it’s not a very good start. This one had me stumped. I had to resort to feeling lucky on a search engine. It directed me to the Vision, Mission and Values page of the Vancouver Hospital. That cleared it up nicely.

“Allow for open and honest feedback”

Bollockings are to be encouraged.

“Encourage challenge, including upwards, to ensure that our behaviour is consistent”

Your chance to tell your boss what you really think of him/her. If you don’t like your job.

“Accept criticism”

See above re feedback.

“Ensure all staff feel comfortable in expressing themselves without fear”

See above re encouraging challenge.

“Be transparent in our information, policies and processes”

‘Don’t tell them your name Pike’ is now a banned phrase. Expect to have to explain the intricacies of the Ways and Means Act too.

“Allow space for dialogue about mistakes to help us learn from them”

Your open and honest feedback is to be scheduled. Ad-hoc criticism is now banned.

“Explain the good and the bad”

No. I don’t know what Clint Eastwood movie reviews have to do with the modern Police Service either. Maybe The ‘Together’ Team are fans?

“Ensure that our structures and processes reflect our values.”

Erm… This one is obvious. You don’t need me.

“Be able to say sorry”

If you have trouble with the ‘s’ word. Try ‘we regret’ instead.

“Communicate everything, not just our failures”

The boys and girls at ‘The Job’ are all over this one.

I hope you’ve been keeping up; it’s your turn now. You have four questions to answer:-

Q1. To what extent do you agree that THIS value is relevant to our goal of Working Together for a Safer London?

To assist you there are the usual five options from ‘Strongly Agree’ to ‘Strongly Disagree’. ‘Bugger All’ is not one of the choices.

Q2. How important is THIS value to you?

Options again I’m afraid.

Q3. To what extent do you agree that the MPS is currently living THIS value?

You guessed it.

Q4. If you have any further comments regarding THIS value, please write them below:

At last.

A free text box.

Bugger away, if you must.

After all, it is anonymous.


At 31/7/05 10:07 AM, Blogger Liz said...

did you know that bollocking is not in the dictionary? bollock is. I had to go to a website on british slang to find the usage of the word the way you used it. Seems it's the American equivalent for bullshit. I like bollocking better, I may have to start using it. So what if everyone thinks I've gone batty.

At 31/7/05 6:26 PM, Anonymous BartVimes said...

"No. I don’t know what Clint Eastwood movie reviews have to do with the modern Police Service either."

My mind started to whir, and brought forth this:
"This is a Stop And Account form, the most powerful document in the policing world. Now, I know what you're thinking. In all the excitement, did he fill out five forms, or six? Do you feel lucky, punk? Well do you?"

I think I need a lie down...

At 31/7/05 7:05 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

@Annabel Lee

"Bollocking" isnt exactly the same thing as bullshit, although someone "Giving you a bollocking" may be speaking a lot of bullshit. Bollocking is a british slang term for a verbal ear bashing, i.e. getting into deep doo-doo.

At 1/8/05 5:13 PM, Anonymous Brian said...

Ms Lee,

A 'bollocking' is a verbal assault launched by a superior on a mere foot soldier. This is usually done to point out the errors of the foot soldier in a no-nonsense manner.

This is sometimes referred to as 'development'.

I unreservedly apologise for using such a British word.

It was very uninclusive of me.

Please don't report me to the Diversity Police.

At 2/8/05 10:08 AM, Blogger angel tech said...

was directed to your extremely funny site by a friend who liked the post about tipping cows...

if it's any consolation re the advice to women comment in this post, don't think I could really advise on matching shoe/frock combinations. and I am a girl.

At 4/8/05 12:10 PM, Anonymous PC COPPERFIELD said...

I get suveyed all the time. I have strict rules, these are:
1. Tick "agree" in 80% of the boxes
2. Tick "neither agree or disagree" in the remaining 20%
3. Never enter "free text"
This will ensure that your opinions are ignored and you will never be asked to expand upon your opinions.

At 4/8/05 6:07 PM, Anonymous Brian said...

Ms Tech,

I've searched the survey and can find no question on shoes and frocks. If there were, I'd tick the box 'stilettos with everything'.

As a confirmed 'townie' I have no idea how to tip a cow. Does it involve fillet steak?

At 4/8/05 6:12 PM, Anonymous Brian said...


I bow to your superior knowledge of survey completion.

However, I'm more of a 'strongly agree' type of guy.

I wouldn't want to upset the 'Together Team'. They seem like a jolly bunch.

At 4/8/05 8:33 PM, Blogger angel tech said...

sorry yes the previous comment was in a bit of a random place...
cow tipping is a drunken sport in some parts of rural scotland - the main reason borderers are so good at rugby.

At 4/8/05 10:31 PM, Anonymous Brian said...

Ms Tech,

Thank-you for clearing that up.

You had me slightly concerned for a while.


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