Wednesday, 26 February 2014

Grumpy Agent Having a Rant

A few days ago I blogged about a borough-wide newsletter we are putting together for Tom Tugendhat with different editions for each of the wards, in total there are over 30 versions. 

To manage the avalanche of words I set three deadlines: 

  • The wards/councillors who always respect deadlines were given two weeks to supply their copy. Every single one did so, on time and without chasing.
  • The traditional slow-pokes were given three weeks.  Most required two reminders (one from me and one from the Group Leader) but copy arrived from them all.
  • The third group (thankfully just four wards) were given four weeks. And guess what? Despite twice as long to produce words as the first group, and despite three written reminders, none of them provided their copy on time. In fact one councillor has gone into hiding and we will have to print his leaflets with a blank space. 
One member of this group was somewhat taken aback when he discovered he was in group three on the basis that I just knew he would be late. "What gives you the right to make such an assumption?" I was asked. Well, to be frank, it's a case of history repeating itself. This is exactly the same group who are invariably:
  • Late with their election copy, resulting in increased costs and delays for everyone else
  • Late with their nomination papers, resulting in last minute phone calls and unnecessary trips to the Returning Officer
  • Late coming in to sign their election expenses
  • Late paying their subscription - resulting in money wasted sending reminders
Interestingly - they are invariably the same councillors who phone or email complaining about "the looming UKIP threat" and asking what "we" will do about it whilst simultaneously dragging their feet when given an opportunity to do something useful by communicating with their voters.

I do wonder how they would feel if they turned up for the AGM to find I had 'forgotten' to book the room. Or arrived at a social event event to find I had 'overlooked' reserving a place for them. Or reached the day the Statement of Persons Nominated was published only to find I had 'misremembered' to submit their nomination papers. Or even found themselves disqualified because I had 'accidentally' deleted the email advising of the deadline for submission of election expenses. 

Rant over!

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