Give them enough rope and ... to hang themselves

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The Independent Online
TONY BLAIR is sending his team on a management training course. We eavesdrop on the final plenary session:

"Goooood morning! Are you feeling motivated? Then let's say Wow together. WOOOWW! Wasn't that energising? (Buzz, give Mr Cunningham a little nudge, willya?). OK, this last session is to tie a few things up and review some of the work we've been doing together. Then you guys can take off your WOW T-shirts, escape from here and have an election, or whatever it is you do.

There's no point in going over the Outward Bound bonding morning again. Everybody accepts your explanation about the rope, Robin, and Tony tells me that he has the power to co-opt a new Deputy Leader - so no big deal. Buzz and I have looked over the project work. Gordon, we think "metastasising the input-output dichotomy" was probably excellent, but we'd like to keep it another month and come back to you. Body language lessons went well too, despite Frank's belief that the great expert here was Le Petomane. Interpersonal skills were exceptional. Only one failed badly on verbal skills (hand Jack a tissue, Buzz). Which brings us to the Feedback exercise. Each of you were assessed by 10 anonymous subordinates - you call 'em backbenchers. Some interesting results here, especially for you, Tony. They think you look great. Straight 5s. For some reason you've upset the music lovers, who weren't happy with "takes advice from the right people" and "promotes wisely" - and have all written in something about Mendelssohn. So I'd change the music.

Buzz and I have loved every minute of it and we'd just like to say - to paraphrase your own Jeremy Steel - go back to your constiuencies and prepare for management. Thank you."