I once watched a Channel 4 boss goes under cover programme about a private sector company. It was interesting, exposing problems in the company and leading to new thinking by the boss on how he should do his job.
I therefore tuned in with anticipation last night to see them do the same thing in the public sector. THe CEO of Tower Hamlets went under cover, working with Meals on wheels, pest control, enforcement and housing.
In each case they choose a member of staff who behaved well. The film enabled the CEO to present the case that he ran the perfect organisation, that it was very efficient, and that the lessons to be leanred were they needed more money for capital investment and needed to allow their staff to spend more time on their jobs. Each staff member he worked with was given special recognition or promotion.
During the movie the private sector had to be atacked for putting profit before service. Really Channel 4, you need to make more challenging programmes than this. Why has public sector productivity fallen so far behind private sector in the last ten years? Why couldn’t you choose a boss and a case where lessons could be learned to improve things? We need intelligent and informed debate about how we in the public sector can raise our game, not propaganda films.