Letter: Parents against Tom Peters

Click to follow
The Independent Online
ON PAGE 13 of Business there is an article on the difficulties employees in the law, banking and accountancy sectors face in balancing the demands of their working and home lives (''In search of the family firm'', 13 November).

On the back page Tom Peters makes 16 suggestions for improving the performance of companies. One involves starting at 6am, another twice a week at 7am and another 8am every third Thursday. Does he realise those working parents (like me) who take their children to school on their way to work cannot start early without making complicated alternative arrangements? The article typifies management attitudes which give rise to difficulties for working parents. Even if early morning meetings etc are voluntary, working parents who do not attend are going to lose brownie points for not doing so - and will probably feel guilty about their non-attendance.

He also proposes extra training commitments and ``voluntary growth assignments'', which are excellent prescriptions for imposing unacceptable levels of stress on parents who want to spend time with their children - and to finish work early enough to help them with homework.

I suggest Tom Peters takes some lessons from Linda Moir of British Airways on how to employ well-balanced individuals and rethinks his management suggestions accordingly.

Julia Kent