Monday, November 2, 2020


It’s amazing how public opinion can be swayed by firstly inherent unshakable beliefs and secondly by continual spin through words and actions.

It doesn’t seem to matter what travesties have occurred because all is forgiven as a matter of course.  The infamous ‘Stockholm’ syndrome is alive and well even on a grand scale.  The perpetrators or captors do horrible things then convince their victims that they are in fact good people and to be admired through spin and their dedication to cause.

I refer to Andrews and his mis-management of Victoria.  As a politician he seems to conform to the definition – a person who acts in a manipulative and devious way, typically to gain advancement within an organization.

This is not a political comment but a management issue.

Victoria is now trillions of dollars behind in direct costs plus eye watering losses of productivity and has seen some 800 people die as a result of Andrews mal administration of the so called Covid 19 second wave.   This is not subject to discussion as it is proven beyond any doubt.  A government with collective amnesia about who spent some $30 million to use private security in hotel quarantine instead of free ADF, refused the best contact tracing system, refused to replicate what other states and territories achieved and how they did it and watched as infection rates soared and ruined people’s lives does not deserve to manage anything.

Constant vacillation over imposed restrictions and mixed messages all demonstrate a government out of control.  And, as we had precedents from all over the world and within Australia there was and is no excuse.

You can tell when a manager is out of his depth by the guilt trip of working 80+ hours a week in an effort to redress his own inabilities and dysfunctions and to be seen as ‘working hard’ so that people will see him getting more and more exhausted and feel for his dedication when in good management, interactions are controlled and delegated – not micro managed.

Mr Genuine then imposes more and more ‘restrictions’ in an effort to fix the issues he created.  Restrictions which have been proven as useless.  Still our ‘captor’ is seen as in control, dedicated, working hard and focused on his agenda of saving us.  The spin is fear  of death as well as ‘sympathy for his dedicated plight’ saving us and some 60% of people actually believe him.  The Stockholm syndrome on a large scale is alive and well.

Andrews behaviour is foolish and dangerous as has been clearly demonstrated.

Good management is around 40% dedicated and focused work and 40% strategic planning with the remaining 20% being interactions with professionals who actually know what they are talking about.  All of this accounts for perhaps 7 hours a day with the rest taken up with life, kids, golf, future.   Not hard! 

Out of control people work long hours with exponentially diminishing returns to try and do the job they are incapable of doing.  For example, an expert ‘numbers’ person adds up a series of numbers in say 2 minutes whereas a person who does not see numbers as friends takes 4 minutes and has to work ‘really hard’ to get a result.  Apart from the stress and anxiety of being out of their intellect zone it’s taken twice as long and cost twice as much.  WIth Andrews he has proven to be well out of his capability zone having to work really hard to ‘catch up’ and what happens? - blunders, bungled processes, bad decisions and lost time.  But, in this case, also 800+ lives.

One cannot just ignore what’s happened as that would disrespect those who had unnecessarily lost their lives, those who have suffered mental health issues as a result of the mal-administration and those who have lost their business, savings and financial security.

Remember, this terrible second wave need not have happened if Andrews had replaced ‘working hard’ real with cognitive thought with a team of experts  leading to good management.  All he needed to do was watch what our federal government and state and territory governments were doing and replicate same.  Not unprecedented and not out of the ordinary unless you are a narcissist depending on and fixated by the need to be seen as one in absolute control.

The cost to Victoria is immense in terms of reputation, human suffering and financial loss.  Worse, Victoria has negatively affected Australia’s reputation and caused massive financial loss.  All this borrowed money will have to be paid back with interest for negative benefit – just catch up.  Remember it was Andrews who spent $1.2b to NOT build a road.  Financial insanity!  How about selling out infrastructure Victoria to a foreign power with a secret MOU which caused such alarm bells as to force the Federal Government to enact legislation to be able to override rogue states making questionable decisions.  How about Andrews and his management team suffering collective amnesia over spending $30m on private security for the botched hotel quarantine when professional support was offered for nothing.

It goes on and on and on.

What now?

We can’t change a government out of term unless supply is threatened and the body politic turn on the elected representatives through a motion of no confidence and this won’t happen unless people cross the floor and vote against their own inabilities.  Not likely.

But, public pressure can mitigate change.  Change in management.  Let the politicians play at politicking and set in place a professional management team to transparently rescue Victoria and reset the bar.  Disaster management, yes, but far more.  For example how can we aspire to be anything unless we have a clear communicated vision leading to strategic directions leading to strategic plans leading to action plans leading to focused action.  Yes, this is textbook business 101, is not new but is proven.  Don’t ignore the millions of words written and acted on by companies and organisations worldwide for decades and decades.

I suggest Victorians demand the introduction of a highly qualified professional bi-partisan management team to rebuild Victoria from the top down starting with a vision we can all rally behind.  This is not working hard but working smart. Treat Victoria as the failing organization it is and deal with required interventions instead of replacing focus with shouty rhetoric and having to be seen to be working hard to mitigate inability.

Imagine what we can achieve given focus, strength of purpose and an innate desire to act!  All we need is a new professional, proven, high powered, respected and focused management team capable of leading that charge. The ‘jigsaw’ people capable of building a coherent picture from seemingly disparate pieces then handing the ‘plan’ to the ‘block’ people to action within explicit guidelines. [Reference jigsaw/block people to descriptions I coined some 30 years ago to describe the two critical areas of business needed for success.   Simple, intuitive and true.]

The first and hardest stage in this process is an acceptance by all that this is indeed necessary.  In this case not too hard given the obvious dysfunctions of this government.  It takes a good manager to recognise personal shortcomings and deal with them by seeking professional advice.  It takes an idiot to waddle through dysfunction with horrendous outcomes.  If Victoria was a company, Andrews and his senior team would possibly be in goal from breaching his own legislation on corporate culpability leading to death.

But, politicians seem immune from actual responsibility continually wafting around with shouty seemingly sincere voices working hard  to fix disaster whilst sinking further and further behind.  These people are NOT our Stockholm heroes but merely elected ‘block people’ attempting to do a ‘jigsaw’ persons job.  The second lurches from disaster to disaster whilst the first strategises, plans and sets in train specific objectives to achieve desired results.

This thinking is not hard and has been around for decades and decades.

In an ideal world Andrews would announce the formation of an arms length transparent advisory powerhouse professional management team ‘with teeth’ to set in train a program to reset Victoria away from the pariah mendicant state we have become.  This ‘powerhouse’ to be seen as the independent team advising the government on what to do before the government applies themselves to focused action.  Not behind closed doors but out there working with Victorians.  A definite separation of responsibility.  The bi-partisan powerhouse defines what needs to happen, why it needs to happen and when Vs the government’s responsibility to make it happen within commercial time frames. 

There are many issues requiring this powerhouse including bush fire plans, covid19 plans, strategic vision development, infrastructure planning, homelessness plans, image creation, et alia.  Quite a long list!  Imagine how the world could see Victoria as the state embracing the future through powerhouse professional management away from shouty ‘look at me’ inappropriate rhetoric.  Wow!

Politicking and narcissism need to be removed whilst the adults take over.   Indeed, Andrews could be seen as a professional manager instead of the politician who killed Victoria.