Skip to main content

Strategies vs Results

Local and Central government is full of thoughts about strategies and a "strategic approach". Looking at we find:

A plan of action resulting from strategy or intended to accomplish a specific goal. See Synonyms at plan.
The art or skill of using stratagems in endeavors such as politics and business.

Are probably valid.

Ignoring the military definitions a strategem is defined as:
A clever, often underhanded scheme for achieving an objective. See Synonyms at wile

Alternatively we have:
n 1: an elaborate and systematic plan of action

So assuming that strategies are not supposed to be underhanded. What we have is a big detailed plan.

The real problem is that what people try to do is to have big strategies that are long documents with lots of things in them.

Then it comes to implementation of the strategy and what happens is that the people doing things decide what they want to do and then work out how it fits to the strategy.

In other words the bigger and more elaborate the strategy the less effect it has on reality.

On the other hand government likes big strategies.

So we now have a situation in which a large amount of effort goes into writing documents that actually have very little effect.

Par for the course really.

One of the things we have tried to do in Birmingham, however, is to stop having contradictory strategies. We have set up a database of "policies" or "things we want to do" and will generate the strategies from those. Clearly a sensible approach is to ensure that you don't have contradictory objectives.

It does, however, sadden me as to how much effort goes at great length into producing massive documents. Once there was a document which got as far as full council before anyone noted that the typist had put some intentional errors in it.

That showed that hardly anyone read it.

I did once move a resolution that "reports should be shorter" - it split the Labour Group. There is, of course, a balance in these things. However, having strategies that are inches thick and full of vagues phrases is not that productive.


Popular posts from this blog

Millionaires and politics

The Labour Party spent most of the last election criticising me for being a successful businessman (aka millionaire). That is business in the private sector employing over 250 people. It is worth looking at the situation for the Labour Candidate now:

For the year 2016-7 Annual Income from Parliament74,962Specifically for her book51,250Other media income etc5,322.82Total declared income131,534.82

Traditionally anyone with an annual income of over £100,000 has been considered to be a millionaire. I did not use my position in parliament to increase my income.

I have been asked for sources for this. This BBC piece looks at how one should define rich. It was written in 2011 so the figures will be slightly out of date. There are perhaps 2 relevant pieces:
"In 1880 a rich person would have had £100,000 in assets or an income of £10,000 a year, he says. About a hundred people a year died leaving £100,000 and by 1910 this was 250 - "a microscopic fraction of the number of death…

Homelessness vs Selling Books

Candidates in elections tend to find themselves very busy with lots of things to do.  It is, therefore, necessary to prioritise things to ensure that the important things are dealt with.

To me the issue of homelessness and rough sleeping is an important issue.  Therefore, when Birmingham's Faith Leaders group contacted me to ask me what I would propose and whether I would work with them to make things better I was pleased to respond with my views and indicate that I would work with them after the election.

The Faith Leaders Group (Bishops and other religious leaders in Birmingham) have now sent out their report.

Sadly, according to their report,  I was the only candidate for Yardley to respond.  The group in their report said:

"Particularly disappointing was the lack of response from some of those candidates seeking re-election as MP for their respective constituencies."
It is worth looking at the priorities of my opponent.
Interestingly today she has decided to be at th…

Gender Issues comparison of candidates

John Hemming believes that an MP should represent everyone in their constituency.  This should be regardless of their race, religion, gender, abledness, sexual orientation or anything else.  It should be everyone.

When he was an MP he worked on issues relating to men, those relating to women and those relating to non-binary people. Everyone.

For example here is John Hemming on a demonstration outside the courts with the campaign group Women Against Rape (it related to the case of a mother who had her child removed from her because the mother was raped).

Jess Phillips, who campaigns on women's issues, notwithstanding the questions asked about her appointments in her parliamentary office, had the following response when asked for a debate on issues specifically relating to men: