This week’s lettersThought-provoking line manager piece I thought the cover story on your 13 May issue (on your exclusive researchamong HR professionals on what they thought of the line managers within theirorganisation) was just terrific. Quentin Reade’s article was well researched and put together, and I enjoyedreading it. I strongly suspect that such research in the US would turn up very similarresults. A powerful and thought-provoking read – congratulations! Lance Jensen Richards Managing director, Suddenly Global LLC, USA Concessions really there for the parents I couldn’t agree more with your article, ‘Pregnant Pause is ManagerialCurse’ (13 May). The Government seems to be forgetting two things: first, parenthood is achoice, made by people for their own reasons – and normally without consultingtheir colleagues beforehand; second, the tax system, favouring parents soheavily, decreases the goodwill of childless people towards their parentingcolleagues. Surely the Equal Pay Act was, among other things, meant to stop people beingpaid according to their family circumstances, rather than the value of theirwork? It does grate, then, when a middle manager’s subordinate with threechildren takes home more pay than her. Nor am I convinced how necessary it is to allow time off work to parents forthe child’s first day at nursery, nativity play or sports day, etc. I don’trecall my (single parent) father taking time off work for these things and Iseem to have survived. I can only conclude that these concessions are more forthe enjoyment of the parent than the needs of the child. All things considered, it’s remarkable that relations between the childlessand parents are as good as they are. Name and address supplied Morals and ethics good for business I think the ‘Blowing your own credibility’ article by Stephen Overell (Offmessage, 10 June), reflects some valid issues surrounding the increasingly popularuse of ‘business ethics’. However, it comes down on the cynical side, pulling too much on utilitarianismand the view that individuals have the ‘WIIFM’ (What’s In It For Me) tuneplaying in their head at all times. Reality lies far more in the middle ground.We know that individuals behave far more charitably when they have anaudience. Research shows that men give more to street collections and the likewhen they are in female company, as opposed to on their own or with other men.But surely one of the objectives of any business is to become sustainable, andpart of this must include businesses reputation. If we see a way to increase our reputation as being seen to do the rightthing, then as people, we are going to do so. However, just because this isdone in public, whether through engaging with business ethics or corporatesocial responsibility, does not mean that business isn’t also doing ‘the rightthing’ out of sight and the limelight. Doing good business (or ethical business) means running a successful andprofitable one. All businesses and organisations have to reflect the needs andwants of consumers. Today, consumers want transparency, and for businesses toshow that they are run honestly and with integrity. This means businesses willhave to deliver their wares with honesty and integrity to reach the greatestnumbers. In my opinion, this cannot be a bad thing. Whether the main driver isthe bottom line or morals, becomes academic. To me, the objective of promoting business ethics is so that we can improvethe society we live in. George Gallant Good Business Network Majority are against congestion charging I read your article entitled ‘Employees call for congestion charging acrossUK’ (News, 13 May). However, the figures could have been presented in anotherway: “More than two-thirds of workers think congestion charging would notimprove their journey to work…” How would you fancy paying a tenner a day (it won’t be £5 for much longer)for entering a city? The charge is having little effect on traffic now thatpeople are getting used to it. Road users have paid many times over for a decent transport system. It’s notan issue of having to pay more and more to use less and less road. It is anissue of governmental spin, and how funds are actually spent. Jane Samuel Independent IT systems consultant Childless workers are not victimised I think Ruth Gilmour, HR manager of Kingstown Furniture, should consider thebigger picture with regard to accommodating colleagues with dependants, be theykids or sick or elderly relatives (Letters, 27 May). Yes, of course children are the responsibility of the parents and yes, itdoes put pressure on colleagues when an individual has to put their familyabove their work. However, we are all part of society’s system, and there willbe times when we have to ‘take’ more than we can ‘give’. But to condemn thosewho are at such a stage in their lives is short -sighted. If we apply this victim mentality of the childless ‘carrying’ the world’sparents to pensions, Ms Gilmour would presumably object to staff paying intopension schemes which are given to those of pensionable age. Would she suggestthat we stop the practice of one part of society helping another in this way? Balancing work and family life is difficult, but that is only one piece ofthe big puzzle. If Ms Gilmour has found a miracle solution for all domesticcrises that she’d like to share with the rest of us, then that would befantastic! I find this whole debate over whether it’s harder being a parent or not verytiring. Life is many things but, unless you are completely detached fromreality, it is never a bed of roses all of the way. Just stop moaning please. Nancy Wright Title and company name withheld LettersOn 24 Jun 2003 in Personnel Today Previous Article Next Article Comments are closed. Related posts:No related photos.