Era of the sensitive civil servant dawns
Sunday 04 July 1999
The Ascot college is to train top officials how to develop their Emotional IQ. They will be told that a First in Classics from Oxford is no longer sufficient preparation and that they must learn to "relate" to politicians and become "learning midwives" to other staff.
The courses will show senior Whitehall staff to stop biting their stiff upper lips when ministers criticise their red boxes, and learn to cry instead.
"We are offering two new courses on Emotional IQ," said a spokesman for the college. "The Civil Service is introducing EQ development programmes. This is a new but very important concept."
Permanent secretaries will be told they should move from "bullish macho attitudes" that "stifle emotionality and creativity" and learn to become sensitive to the emotional needs of people around them, including traffic wardens and cleaning staff. They will be told that "Yeah, Minister" can sometimes be better than "Yes Minister" and "loose" body language is all- important.
The new programmes will help male officials to learn from women colleagues who are in touch with their intuitive side. They will be told to practice "empathising".
Permanent Secretaries, renowned for their reserve, will no longer have to "leave their soul in the car park" and can "learn things at work that will be useful in the whole of life".They will be told that standing straight, with their hands behind their back sends out "closed" body-language signals and is "too male".
The courses in EQ will begin this autumn and have been approved by ministers at the Cabinet Office. The new approach, part of the Government's strategy to modernise Whitehall, has been welcomed by MPs who believe that the bowler-hatted, pin-striped image of a civil servant is outdated.
Tim Boswell, Conservative MP for Daventry and a former Education and Agriculture Minister, said: "We all remember the fictional Sir Humphrey Appleby who hid the truth in a cascade of fluent and evasive language.
"Civil servants, and indeed politicians, need to become alert to the other ways in which they can become effective communicators, for example, through their body language, style and empathy with the audience."
Look beyond the usual shows for the best festive telly
The battle for control of Stieg Larsson's £30m legacy
Geoffrey Macnab does not like the comedian's big screen debut
Exclusive: Young people ‘want UK to stay in Europe’: Four in 10 adults aged 18 to 24 are ‘firmly in favour’ of membership, poll shows
Tom Daley ‘is gay because his father died’ says UK evangelist
Iain Duncan Smith leaves Commons food banks debate early
Kiss and yell: Italian protester charged with sexual assault after kissing riot police officer
PM denies two child limit for benefits is part of Tory welfare policy
Anachronistic and iniquitous, grammar schools are a blot on the British education system
- 1 Sun will 'flip upside down' within weeks, says Nasa
- 2 Christmas comes early: Justin Bieber is 'retiring from music'
- 3 Iain Duncan Smith leaves Commons food banks debate early
- 4 Cycle death inquest: Boyfriend hugs driver of 32 tonne tipper truck that killed his girlfriend
- 5 Burglar steals video tapes of child abuse, hands them into police
- < Previous
- Next >
£25000 - £35000 per annum + benefits+bonus+package: Harrington Starr: PHP Deve...
£40000 - £55000 per annum: Pro-Recruitment Group: This Big 4 giant is seeking ...
£35000 - £50000 per annum: Pro-Recruitment Group: Do you have personal tax exp...
£22000 - £37000 per annum: Capita Education Resourcing Permanent Team: This se...