Sometimes life just comes together and all you can do is smile. I have had an exceptionally good day. I had a fantastic conversation with my new Chief Executive, I then headed to London to see the Propaganda, Power and Persuasion exhibition at the British Library and finally I had a great time meeting fabulous people at the SE Thames CIPD (Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development) branch annual business meeting at the gorgeous venue that is the Cutty Sark pub in Greenwich.
So three marvellous things happened in one day. And although it was muggy and humid there were times when the sun shone and when the cloud formation over canary wharf and the dome when it really took your breath away, and made you happy to be alive and a Londoner.
I would recommend the Propaganda exhibition to everyone. The British Library is an exceptional venue. For me it was the first time I visited, yep I can’t believe that! The exhibition got you thinking, what is propaganda? Can I believe propaganda? How insidious is it? How much propaganda am I subject to without knowing it?
However, during the CIPD branch meeting we were very lucky to hear the inside story from Wendy Cartwright, HR Director of the ODA. It was a fascinating story giving us the story, full of passion, values and delivery, all presented with such calm. And right opposite the building Wendy was located in during her time there. We heard about legacy, pride, the enormity of the task, and the people that made it all happen. We really were transported back to the glorious days of summer 2012! Such an inspiration.
So how does that link to the British Library exhibition? Well there was video about the Olympics starring Alistair Campbell, talking about country brand and Tessa Jowell about how then country was united in cheer, happiness and optimism. Now that isn’t a bad thing! I remember it, London, my home town, was transformed! Such a positive vibe all around the city, everyone joining in whether that was watching on TV, visiting the park or having tickets to events. And yes I know, it wants just about London, the rowing was very emotional. So was that propaganda? Some people will say yes, the government wanted to spin some positive, others will say no, it’s the people’s opinion spilling out! Does it matter? Probably not. As long as we enjoyed ourselves! And as long as we claimed the Olympics as an Olympics for the people of the UK.
So hearing Wendy speak, we got to understand how much sheer hard work, slog, focus, discipline, planning, strategy, vision, values, partnerships and delivery got to make it happen.
So I reckon we should be proud of what HR people can deliver! It’s an awesome story, and we should be inspired by it. As Wendy said, be courageous and deliver!
So after today, life is definitely very bloody good!