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The rise of the incompetent jobsworth

Posted Oct 07 2008 7:20pm

I obviously do not claim to speak for anyone other than myself, but for me Labour's reign has seem an utterly ridiculous empowerment of the ignorant and a continual belittlement of genuine talent and achievement. A lot of this has been undertaken in the name of 'equality' in a rather politically correct manner. It seems that knocking down the motivated while empowering lazy jobsworths is Labour's idea of great management. I'd argue that this approach is both inefficient and stupid.

The attitude demonstrated by this PCSO is typical for that of Labour's empowered ignorant, they tend to possess a very in-your-face aggressive streak that those with genuine intelligence and knowledge would never dream of revealing. They are completely unaware of their rank lack of training and expertise, they think that their title or position entitles them to treat other humans without any respect of dignity. They demonstrate quite succinctly just how power has the potential to corrupt so absolutely.

This agenda of dumbing down is not cheap, a PCSO is paid a very handsome wage, especially considering the lack of qualifications, training and competition for places. The same is true in other sectors, for example the health and legal sectors have also seen the properly professionals undermined at the expense of fulfilling a corrupt government reform agenda. The driving force behind this is not the unfortunate individuals who have been inappropriately empowered on the front line, it has been the unaccountable ever proliferating network of managers that have presided over this tremendously poorly planned waste.

Despite numerous management failings and programs of dangerous wasteful reform, those who have run the show in government and in the Department of Health continue to force their dross upon us and there seems to be very little we can do to stop it, short of organising a full blown military coup. The catastrophic waste is so beautifully encapsulated by the wasted millions of the NHS University, bear in mind that this is only the tip of the iceberg.

In the NHS those who prevent the show from going under have been those who have been routinely castigated and bullied by the management regime. It is the consultants, the GPs and the nurses on the front line who have had to take all the blame for various problems that should really be dumped at the door of their managers. The managers want all the power but will take none of the responsibility. The government is afraid of those with expertise who the public trust, so no wonder they hate the front line staff who do their best to care for patients when their hands are tied.

Some NHS managers do do a good job, however I am struck by the routine nature of bullying and similar jobsworth type behaviour that is shown by these managers to many of their fellow NHS staff. Good management should involve listening, accepting constructive criticism and working together with people in a cooperative manner to make improvements. NHS management involves ordering people around despite not knowing anything about the implications of one's orders, not listening to any criticism, bullying those who constructively criticise and then carrying on regardless of one's crass incompetence.

The point I'm trying to make is that it's not the fault of the under trainedPCSO if he or she fails to do their job competently, it's the fault of the regime that has created a system that empowers the ignorant. Those who have changed the way the system works are completely unaccountable for their work. For example as regards HAIs (hospital acquired infections), the recent government decision to make certain potentially toxic antibiotics available over the counter flies in the face of the government's pretend attempts to combat C.Diff etal.

The medical profession has it's own malignant branch of this empowered jobsworth, and it seems that they frequently hide away from clinical duties, preferring to bully those on the front line by exploiting their many handy crony-based connections. I know I've significantly digressed from my original point, it's partly because I could rant on inanely for hours on this particular pet hate of mine.

I carry on because I love my clinical work, but it's incredibly frustrating to see progress stifled by such an incredibly backwards culture of top down bullying and incompetence from uneducated jobsworths. There's almost too much to criticise, so much so that the criticism is dissipated over a wider area, there are so many leaks in the NHS roof that it feels as if we're in the shower. The re branding of PCTs is the latest example of this foolish campaign of regression.

So if any of you jobsworths happen to be reading then I hope you realise just how much top talent you are forcing out of out public services such as the NHS. I recently encountered a very experienced and talented ex-nurse who had quit her job as a senior AE sister because she was so fed up with seeing the damage inflicted by the 4hr AE target. She loved her clinical work, however she was sick of seeing doctors bullied by jobsworth bed managers, she had had enough of fighting against this tide of empowered small minded incompetence. I just hope enough of us keep fighting, otherwise the outlook for out patients is not good.
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