The Business Continuity Institute (BCI) recently surveyed over 650 organisations worldwide and found that, whilst 75% had implemented major strategic change programmes, 84% of these projects had been implemented without considering business continuity. Rather worryingly, these major change programmes included mergers, acquisitions, reorganisations, outsourcing of key processes and the introduction of new products – many of which were undertaken without any kind of thinking being applied to the ongoing resilience of the business. Mark Woods, MD of Statius, commented “In business there are some risks you have to take but many of these risks are those can easily be accounted... Read More
If you can cast your mind back far enough, the list is as long as it is depressing – the list, that is, of organisations that have failed despite their efforts to maintain vigilance against the risks associated with running a business. The list includes the recent spectacular failures of the banks, AIG, Enron, Tyco, Polly Peck, and BCCI; there are many others besides. Various reports addressing the issues of internal control have been written by stock market grandees, probably most notably the Turnbull report which pulled the findings of a number of earlier reports together. The board is ultimately... Read More
One of our Associates, Stuart Swalwell, recently spent some time in Los Angeles with Bill Bellows, Associate Fellow at Pratt and Whitney Rocketdyne and Leader of Enterprise Thinking, and is now drafting a paper outlining the differences between the Statius product, Optimisation 3D™, and Six Sigma. In a sentence, Six Sigma is a set of tools and techniques that concentrate on meeting specifications whilst Optimisation 3D™ focuses on the continuous improvement of the organisation as a whole so that customers remain delighted by the products or services they receive. It is hoped the final paper will be published towards the... Read More
We all want our staff and workforce to go home safety to their loved ones at night and it does appear there is evidence that we are getting better at it. In a recent article for Safety Management, Mark Tyler, a partner in the legal practice Shook, Hardy and Bacon, wrote “we often hear the complaint that health and safety fines are too low, but little is heard about HSE prosecutions dropping by half over the last decade, to around 1,000 a year”. Obviously, there are many reasons for the number of prosecutions falling and Mark Tyler does go on... Read More
The Institute of Customer Service (ICS) has undertaken its first comprehensive research exercise examining the return on investment from customer service. When asked which activities were most likely to lead to the highest returns, eighty per cent of respondents said “gaining an understanding of the customer’s point of view”. Seventy-four per cent also said that gathering and acting on customer feedback would also prove effective. Statius’ managing director, Mark Woods, commented “This research fully endorses our change management approach as, in all instances, our first action is to establish an organisation’s “purpose”, that is, the benefits and capabilities that the... Read More
The first conviction under corporate manslaughter legislation introduced in 2007 has now been made. A geologist died when taking soil samples in a 12ft deep unsupported pit which caved in. Cotswold Geotechnical Holdings were fined £385,000 and Mr Justice Field, the judge, told the court that the fine reflected the seriousness of the offence and would act as a deterrent for other companies who do not adhere to health and safety legislation. At Statius we pride ourselves on professional and practical health and safety advice. If you are in any doubt about the safety and welfare of your people or... Read More
The recent Sony hack attack has shown how vulnerable our increasing love affair with the online world had made us. The explosion of information technology means that organisations are now exposed to completely new areas of risk that didn’t exist a generation ago. As a result, the subject of information security has percolated to the top of the management agenda for a number of reasons: The loss of some very high profile data Virus attacks Computer hackers We are all now very aware of the threats arising from mismanaging information security. Protecting information security is about how an organisation maintains:... Read More
The new ISO 26000 standard, Guidance on Social Responsibility, was published late last year and gives guidance on the underlying principles of the, often confusing, area of social responsibility. The aim of the standard is to help organisations integrate socially responsible practices into existing strategies, systems and processes. The framework includes seven key areas. • Human rights • Labour practices • The environment • Fair operating practices • Consumer issues • Community involvement and development • Organisational governance By using the framework to review the way in which an organisation behaves, the ISO 26000 Standard assesses to what extent an... Read More
The UK can meet its environmental target to cut greenhouse emissions by 60% over the next 20 years, the Committee on Climate Change reports. However, this will mean completely overhauling the energy sector, with an annual investment of £16bn in the 2020s, and replacing 11 million petrol cars with electric or hybrid equivalents. The committee chair, Lord Adair Turner, said “The case for action is as strong as ever: climate change science remains robust and suggests there are very significant risks if we do not cut emissions. And countries acting now will gain economic benefits in an increasingly carbon constrained... Read More
Across the World, over one million ISO 9001 certificates have now been awarded according to the latest figures from the International Standards Organisation. The survey, published in October 2010, reveals that there were 1,064,785 certificates, an increase of about 80,000 on the previous year, and that certificates are now held in 178 different countries. The survey also reveals sharp increases, almost 70%, in the food safety standard, ISO 22000, and a 40% increase in registrations to the information security standard IEC/ISO 27001. If you are interested in registering to any of these prestigious standards, or any others, please call Mark... Read More
Suppliers and sub contractors throughout the construction supply chain have, for a long time, had to complete a vast number of different PQQ forms from an ever increasing number of different bodies, for instance: • Achilles • CHAS • Construction Line • Exor • Safe contractor • SIPP • And many others It has long been suggested that this leads to considerable unnecessary and duplicated effort which costs time and money: • Buyers, and their assessment providers, have to read and evaluate the responses • Suppliers have to complete a number of similar, but subtly different, PQQs. This approach is... Read More
ISO 26000, the guidance standard for corporate social responsibility, has now been approved. The standard includes various definitions useful to CSR, and the issues that need to be addressed when implementing a CSR system. It also provides guidance on how to integrate CSR with other standards and how to deploy the thinking throughout an organisation. The final publication date was set as November 1st.
The Association of Interior Specialists has recently launched a very impressive document detailing an integrated management standard for the sector. The standard is specifically tailored to different sized firms and includes ideas and recommendations on effectively managing different activities within a business, for instance, business planning, financial control, employee development, health safety and welfare, the environment, quality, and project management. Statius has a history of working with companies in the interior fit-out sector: Chorus, Meronden, Orostream, Spectrum Projects and many others spring to mind. On reviewing the standard, Mark Woods, MD of Statius, commented “This is brilliant, I wish we’d... Read More
In view of the success of the business continuity standard BS 25999, the BSi is currently expanding the guidance documentation relating to the key subject areas in the standard. The new documents include guidance on developing human resource policies following an incident (PD 25111) and the development and implementation of business recovery practices (PD 25888).
Business Focus at Bromley College has won a number of contracts to build capacity within the south London region. As part of these contracts, there is a requirement to improve the way in which companies manage their impact on the environment and Statius has been chosen to deliver a suite of seminars. The seminars are free as they are funded by the European Development fund and managed by the Solutions for Business programme. There will be three sets of seminars, two being held at Bromley College and another to be held in Sutton at a venue yet to be determined.... Read More
Statius has, for some time, been in discussions with the BSIA (British Security Industry Association). Indeed, in the summer, Statius was invited to present at the BSIA’s Information Destruction Conference under the banner Marketing means Business. Since this time, Statius has applied to, and now joined, the BSIA as an associate member and will soon be writing a number of “How To” articles which will be joint branded and placed on the BSIA member website. These articles are designed to be short, one to two page, introductions to a range of subjects, for instance, how to manage people, how to... Read More
As of 20 October, Ian Harnett will be leaving the company. Of his leaving, Mark Woods, MD of Statius, said that Ian had made an extremely valuable contribution to the Company over the duration of his stay Statius and that he would be very sorely missed. We all wish Ian all the very best of luck in his new endeavours as a contracts manager with GEA Grenco, one of Statius’s clients.
Longcross is a young, thrusting and innovative construction group working predominantly with large retailers like Tesco, Sainsbury’s and Morrisons. The Group is made up of three separate companies, Construction, Engineering, and Security, and has a combined turnover of about £200m. Statius has been working with the construction company for some time. However, recently, there has been a lot of debate, led by Danny Brittin and Chris Miles, about creating an integrated management system for the whole Group to combine the requirements of various management systems: quality, health and safety, and environmental. Additionally, agreement has been reached with Longcross Construction who... Read More
Information security has rocketed up the management agenda and a number of private and public sector contracts have been withheld where companies cannot demonstrate information integrity. Recognising this as an area of increasing concern, Statius recently hosted a seminar on the subject in London in conjunction with Bureau Veritas and, very kindly, Remploy. The subjects discussed included the different types of risk involved with information, for instance, are the risks concerned with confidentiality, integrity or availability, and how this risk-based approach can be used as the foundation for a certifiable information security standard such as ISO 27001. The seminar was... Read More
According to new research by Premierline Direct, only 37% of the leaders surveyed said that the safety of their workforce was a concern compared with 86% of leaders who were worried about profit growth. These finding were echoed by another study undertaken by St John Ambulance who found that small firms were flouting health and safety laws – 79% of firms admitted to having periods where there were no first aiders in place. Additionally, 15% of SMEs have never carried out an assessment to determine risk within the workplace. Mark Woods of Statius commented “This is very worrying: there is... Read More
Mark Woods, the founder of Statius, took an MBA with the World’s first Professor of Quality, John Oakland, at Bradford School of Management in 1991. Mark’s dissertation was undertaken on models for total quality and business excellence. Literally weeks after Mark submitted his dissertation, the European foundation for Quality Management (EFQM) released the Business Excellence Model, totally upstaging Mark and his dissertation findings. So much for timing! The idea of a model for excellence was originally mooted by a number of European companies who wanted to create a framework to systematically assess an organisations current position and to, more importantly,... Read More
In these challenging economic times, many organisations are contracting with, or considering contracting with, other organisations in gaining public sector contracts. However, gaining a place on tender lists and succeeding through the many procurement requirement hoops now has a further high profile hurdle: INFORMATION SECURITY. The loss of some very high profile data (the child benefit debacle, laptops left on trains, disks and CD’s going astray and the recent news of T Mobile account details being sold on) has raised eyebrows and brought the subject to the top of the public sector agenda. Any contract award will obviously be based... Read More
Following on from a recent Buyer Beware newsletter, NQA, one of the accredited certification agencies, has recently undertaken a survey with some very revealing results. The research surveyed 250 directors of UK SMEs and was published under the banner of “Managing with Certainty”. The research compared companies with and without certification, finding that they were: Organisations with certification Organisations without certification Optimistic that their firm would emerge from the recession in a stronger position than that of its rivals 60% 36% Better able to manage in the short term 72% 31% More able to respond to a changing market place... Read More
Statius are co-presenting a FREE of charge half day seminar entitled “War on Waste”. The event will focus on two related themes which are increasingly business critical in these difficult times. Reducing Cost: Internal waste accounts for 5 – 40% of turnover in any organisation. Elimination of that waste by improving business processes puts £££s straight to the bottom line and keeps it there year after year. Environmental Waste: With Copenhagenonly weeks away, we are increasingly aware that we need to live more lightly upon the Earth. Now environmental credentials are becoming critical requirements for approval to join public and... Read More
The long-awaited draft of the first international standard for corporate social responsibility (CSR) has now been published and is now available for comment until February 2010. The standard can be accessed at www.bsigroup.com/drafts The 100 page draft ISO 26000 standard is not a certifiable standard; it aims instead to provide guidance on the underlying principles of CSR and how to integrate them into existing management systems.
As a number of our clients are aware, a new sustainability event standard, BS 8901, was launched with the Olympics in mind. The standard was subject to a trial period where it was tested by ten organisations between September 2008 and March 2009. As recently announced in Business Standards, the BSi magazine, Amanda Barnes, the chief executive of one of the pilot event companies, Faversham House, said “having a framework with which to measure progress was invaluable… the standard helped us ensure we applied everything in a systematic way… BS8901 has given us a blueprint and a template with which... Read More
Statius has been working with Field Textiles for five years. Field Textiles operates a disposal service for the Disposal Services Authority who work on behalf of the Ministry of Defence and other government departments such as the police and fire services. Field Textiles receives up to 15 articulated lorry loads of goods for disposal each week, which previously would have gone to landfil. The Company sorts and grades the goods received and is responsible for resale of the used product. Historically, the statistics for the contract were in the region of 65% to landfill and 30% being recycled. Through innovative... Read More
In these difficult economic times, public sector organisations and large blue chips are increasingly demanding quality, environmental and health and safety management systems to be certificated by one of the more rigorous UKAS accredited certification bodies. UKAS, the United Kingdom Accreditation Service is the only national accreditation agency recognised by government to assess organisations that provide evaluation services. However, whilst accredited certification is not a legal requirement it has a number of potential benefits. Independent research carried out by Databuild earlier this year (April 2009) suggests that 58% of the organisations surveyed stipulated accredited certification in their prequalification questionnaires, a... Read More
Business is inherently risky and many of us thrive on risks associated with starting, running and growing a business. New staff, new customers and new products are all inherently risky: these are the risks we seek. However, there are risks that we don’t seek, risks we need to plan for, and those we want to positively avoid. We need to ensure that businesses can plan its future and mitigate any risks to ensure its survival. These risks come in many different shapes and sizes and after a number of major, if not spectacular, bank and company failures, these risks are... Read More
Statius would like to extend a “well done” to Specialist Lift Services on achievement of ISO 14001 and BS OHSAS 18001. Matt Lear of Statius had nothing but praise for the hard work put in by the organisation in developing new work practices and communicating the environmental and safety message throughout the organisation. The auditor commented on how well the system had been embedded, and it was good to see that absolutely no issues were raised on site during the audit.
As part of a number of recent projects I’ve been involved in, issues have arisen with regard to running vehicle fleets in an environmentally sympathetic way. With the swap to LPG already having been tried, resulting in problems with reliability, one client was forced to U-turn within 24 months of purchasing an LPG fleet of vans and go back to traditional oil burners. Other clients, being unable to source suitable larger vehicles using hybrid technology, the issue of using chip fat was suggested. I’ve produced the following as a quick guide to the pros and cons of this form of... Read More
New, flexible Investors The Investors in People standard has changed: based on two years of feedback from the pilot project, a more flexible and tailored approach to the way the Standard is delivered has been developed. Essentially, the new approach provides more of a “pick and mix” approach which allows companies to align the Standard to their business goals. As well as maintaining the Standard, Investors in People have introduced additional Bronze, Silver and Gold recognition to acknowledge the achievement of those organisations that wish to work beyond the Standard. There is also an additional long-service award which has been... Read More
In order to drive forward the aim of the UK becoming the largest low carbon power in the world, the Government has published a draft low carbon industrial strategy. The strategy paper follows research by Innovas that the UK is, astonishingly, actually already the world’s sixth largest low carbon economy and employs 880,000 in low carbon jobs. The paper has been summarised in a pamphlet “Low Carbon Industrial Stragety: a Vision” which outlines both Government plans and highlights companies that are already taking advantage of a low carbon economy. Presciently, at the launch, Peter Mandelson, the Business Secretary, said “Low... Read More
Amid the recent snow and accompanying chaos, you may be forgiven for missing the fact that stringent new health and safety laws came into force in mid January. The Health and Safety Offences Act 2008 raises the maximum fines that can be imposed in the lower courts and gives high courts and magistrates the power to imprison employers for a greater number of offences. Natasha Freeman, president of the Institute of Occupational Health and Safety commented “This is the first piece of legislation that recognises that a health and safety manager may not be in control of an outcome; even... Read More
As a result of the ever-increasing health and safety pressure being placed on client companies, Statius has been working hard to assist busy company executives with additional support. We are very pleased to announce that we can now offer a range of IOSH (Institute of Occupational Health and Safety) approved courses. One day directing safely One day working safely Two day supervising safely Four day managing safely Should you require more information on how these courses might be able to help staff in your organisation, please contact Mark Woods on 07976 426 286.
The Rothamsted Institute www.rothamsted.ac.uk is the largest agricultural research centre in the United Kingdom and, almost certainly, the oldest agricultural research station in the world. Rothamsted has built an enviable international reputation as a centre of excellence for science in support of sustainable land management and its environmental impact. The scientific research undertaken ranges from genetics, biochemistry, cell biology and soil processes to investigations at the ecosystem and landscape scale. Statius, having previously worked with the Natural Environmental Research Council (NERC) www.nerc.ac.uk, was asked by the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRS) www.bbsrc.ac.uk to work with the Rothamsted Institute... Read More
Amanda Rosewarne has now completed her extensive research into three key questions prompted by Statius’s interest in the works of Dr W Edwards Deming, the late management thinker. The three key questions of interest were: What evidence is there of a link between organisational performance and the knowledge of leaders, at all levels in an organsation, of the work they supervise? What evidence is there of a link between tenure with an organisation and organisational performance? What evidence is there for a “best” psychological contract between organisations and their employees with respect to high organisational performance? As might be imagined,... Read More
Investors in People Statius was again assessed to the requirements of the Investors in People standard this month. Helen Morgan, the IIP assessor, attended the November Company meeting at which arrangements were made to discuss company strategy and the associated learning and development activities with a sample of Statius staff. The interview dates were set for the week beginning 15 December with the informal debrief today. The (hardly unexpected) excellent news is that the Company, and more particularly the staff that make up the Company, can be very proud of their achievements. Just two of the comments made by the... Read More
Ian Harnett has, over the last few months, been working with Jonathan Pegg, health and safety manager of Rio Tinto. Rio is a world leader in finding, mining and processing the Earth’s mineral resources and Ian has been reworking some of their health and safety systems in time for an external assessment. As a result of the work undertaken, Jonathan recently emailed the following: “I am very pleased to say the assistance from the “old lag” [an affectionate term for Ian] has been brilliant. Ian has helped us to remodel the look and feel of our records and given very... Read More
Statius has been liaising with the Concrete Repair Association (CRA) www.concreterepair.org.uk and their members for the past two years or so; Mark Woods having made a series of presentations about sustainability and the environment at a couple of AGMs. As part of these initiatives, Mark was asked to contribute to the CRA’s newsletter “Cracking Matters”. Mark’s second article, this time on environmental management systems, has now been published: http://concreterepair.org.uk/cracking_matters/CM22.pdf.
Statius’s Mark Woods presented a variation of the Plan Do Study Act model which outlined 22 sub-components to the model, the first of which is legal compliance. Mark’s presentation then went on to show, assuming that the decision has been made to work within the law, how management systems could assist companies keep organisations on the straight and narrow. It is hoped that the presentation for ACR will be the first of many.
A new edition of ISO 9001 is in the final throws of being introduced. This is the fourth edition of the standard which originally replaced the forerunning British Standard, BS5750, in 1987. The previous change in 2000 was a major and radical change. By comparison, the 2008 version represents a minor change and, as such, is being published as an amendment, rather than a revision, to the standard. The changes are, however, intended to improve further compatibility with sister standards such as the environmental and health and safety standards ISO 14001 and OHSAS 18001.
Mark Woods is very pleased to announce that Ian Harnett joined the Statius team on 4th August 2008. Ian, who complements our team of consultants chosen because of their breadth of experience and skills, is no exception having worked in pharmaceuticals, manufacturing, construction and demolition. In his last position, Ian was responsible for a project which ensured that Ling Demolition gained registration to ISO 9001, ISO 14001 and BS OHSAS 18001 at the first attempt with no non-conformances or observations.
Statius has a long and established relationship with Kingston University and the Business School in particular. Brain Wood, a Statius associate, undertook his MBA at Kingston and Statius itself has used the Enterprise Centre for Knowledge Transfer partnerships as well as recommending the scheme to a number of clients. The relationship has now moved into a new phase as Kingston has agreed to work as Statius’s research arm providing research to support the consultancy process. This agreement could not have been reached without the sterling effort of Charlene Edwards of Kingston, to whom we are grateful.
Statius welcomes Charlyn Holland who joined our team of consultants on 6th May 2008. Charlyn has more than ten years’ experience in the aerospace sector where she was responsible for quality engineering and assessing suppliers to ensure that they met the appropriate quality standards. Her forte is continual improvement using tools and techniques such as 8D. Mark Woods commented “Charlyn is an excellent addition to the team, strengthening Statius’s experience in a sector which we have traditionally had limited exposure to”.
Re-thinking management thinking
Since the invention of management over a century ago, management has become detached from both the day to day operation of the organisation and from delivering value to the customers who pay for the products and services provided. Conventional wisdom is that managers set targets and then create systems to monitor, measure and control the execution of these targets. These systems include budgets, performance management, incentives and appraisals which are used to exercise control and ensure that targets are met. Simple, obvious and wrong!
We need a change in management thinking.
The aim of this blog is to therefore challenge the way in which we currently think about management, hopefully slaying some of the myths that surround it.
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