Theo’s view of Politics… that Business is Politics

With all the excitement, mayhem and debate over the last month we finally have a decision, of sorts!

So only recently I have written about my Granddad and his boxing exploits. My Dads Dad and how he was a boxer during the Second World War. Well believe it or not my Dad was a Politician and a good one at that. He entered into government during the Thatcher era and didn’t retire until the end of Gordon Browns reign as Prime Minister. During that period he championed the people of the Vale of Glamorgan and their values, hopes and desires.

Only recently I was contacted by an old classmate at School to remind me of the impact he had on that community.

“I have voted… ever since I was able to vote because of your dad”

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Growing up in what was a working class area of Barry Town in South Wales as a child, I came to recognise ant-apartheid, anti-austerity, pro-socialist demonstrations, barbeques, parties and social events as a normal part of growing up. As the years went on, having well known people such as Rhodri Morgan, Neil Kinnock, Tony Blair… visit us or attend the same events as us, became the norm. Years of activism came before personal political success. This was not the work of a career politician, but the hard work of a carpenter, the son of a Boxer, with a belief that by investing in key public services we can positively impact on the health, wellbeing and success of society as a whole.

So it’s from a very different world, from my Dad’s, that I was born into. One that had break dancing, the emergence of hip hop, rave’s and the freedom to step outside of the boundaries of what somebody should look, sound and act like. Serious freedom of expression with aluminous socks and tramlines in our hair, that later turned to plaits and dreadlocks. My picture says it all! However a society where there was a new type of poverty and deprivation, where the old traditions of industry combated with the new form of capitalism that was emerging.

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The internet with its strange noise of a strangled robot, transformed our lives and soon the ability to communicate with the world at a touch of a button would be a reality. Who could have imagined generation X, Y and…!

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As I hear whispers of people across the net, in the office and whilst a push my daughter on the swing in the park, saying “their all the same”, “what’s the point”, I cringe and physically twist as my history grabs a hold of me, shaking me like branches in the wind. I struggle not to say something and impress upon them that no matter how un-informed, lacking in understanding or miss-educated they are, the need to put your opinion on paper in the form of a cross, has never been more important.

It is the same reason we cannot sit in a business meeting or in our 121 with our manager and stay silent. Even if you think there is no chance of change and even if you think your manager won’t listen, it is only through communication, engagement and the ability to be vulnerable in front of others, that we can truly impact upon positive change. You have to get yourself a seat at the table to have a chance of being heard, but a voice must follow.

Business is Politics because in our current society the two are like the wheels of a car, if they are to come off or become unstable we will crash. We may have different drivers and engines that decide on the direction of the vehicle, but ultimately we need to keep moving. This requires a commitment from all involved to have a stake in society, in business and in ensuring the ongoing maintenance and repair of the vehicle; our society.

My intention is not to trivialise politics at this important juncture in our lifetime, with comparisons to business. But I truly believe that the two are intrinsically linked and that we cannot switch off to business or the political landscape, we need to embrace them and find a way to make it a part of our lives. I successfully work with people from a whole variety of backgrounds. Our ‘belief system’ are not always the same, yet we can come together to achieve great things.

Even political parties have difference of opinions, to stay or leave the EU. To send fighter planes to Lybia, Syria, Iraq… or not to send military intervention. The wheels keep in motion not through that, which we disagree with, but through the communication and engagement that surrounds, ideas, decisions and actions.

It is by talking with one another, challenging each other in the right way that society and business will ultimately succeed. Sometimes we don’t always agree with the decision or believe it is the best for the country or the business, but through constantly testing that decision and challenging it in the right way we will ultimately succeed.

Whether you’re in business or the business of politics, if you’re a teacher, an actor, an engineer or a chef, we all share the world we live in and the air we breathe. So during this time of political uncertainty we can all do one thing, and that is to continue to communicate with one another, to listen, to seek to understand and to challenge that which we believe can be improved.  From there we will build a society that is measured in its beliefs, well informed, inclusive and a place where we all feel we can honestly say we have a stake in society.

 

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Theo’s view of #Social

@TheoSmithUK

Having visited all four corners of the recruitment world, spending time in ‘Specialist Recruitment’, ‘Executive Search’, ‘In-House’ & ‘RPO’, I now bring creative ways of recruiting key talent to my clients. ‘Social Media’ amplification and engagement with a sprinkle of ‘Content Marketing’ is where it’s all happening and I love it!

I also enjoy writing professional blogs, speaking at the company, charity and industry events, whilst still working in a challenging role within TMP Worldwide; a resourcing business that helps organisations hire and retain the right people by leveraging their employer brands.

“We focus on brand led direct resourcing, which puts the employer brand at the heart of the resourcing process”

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