Blair McPherson

  • Motivations for moving

    26 July 2022

    Author and former director Blair McPherson considers the reasons why a senior manager with long tenure may decide to move on.

  • Consultation, confrontation and concessions

    13 June 2022

    Blair McPherson takes an in-depth look at the challenges of budget cuts and consultation, reflecting on dealing with changes to services for people with a learning disability.

  • The success of a people first approach

    19 May 2022

    Exceptional people management is the most effective way to turn round a failing organisation or turn a coasting organisation into a world class one, says Blair Mcpherson.

  • What has bingo and soft toilet paper got to do with empowerment?

    06 May 2022

    'Empowerment’ could join a long list of words that once carried the prospect of change but are now simply dropped into reports because it’s expected, says Blair Mcpherson.

  • The seemingly insecure view from the top of the ladder

    04 April 2022

    Blair Mcpherson examines the precarious view from the top of the career ladder, and the factors that can lead to moments of insecurity.

  • Would you answer the Siren call? 

    16 March 2022

    The motivations for taking on the task of trying to turn round a failing organisation aren’t always based on careful research and clear understanding of the problems, says Blair Mcpherson.

  • Why would you put youth above experience? 

    17 February 2022

    Whether it comes to making senior appointments at elite football clubs or local government, picking youth over experience is risky, says Blair Mcpherson.

  • What happens when you have used all the tools in your tool box? 

    17 January 2022

    If you lose your chief executive in 2022 console yourself with the knowledge that truly great managers are not those who cling to office the longest. 

  • Why do bosses call so many meetings?

    16 December 2021

    Meetings can be time consuming, costly, stressfully, unproductive and unpopular, so is there still a point to them, asks Blair Mcpherson.

  • What have you done for me lately?

    08 November 2021

    It’s hardly surprising that councillors are keen to not want the opposition to take unjustified credit for what the local authority has done for the public, says Blair Mcpherson.

  • How teams react when their manager is doomed

    20 October 2021

    Blair Mcpherson ponders the case of a team's delicate balancing act between 'recognising the need to ingratiate yourself with the chief executive and not being too disloyal to a boss who has been good to you'.

  • Bringing on the bad news

    30 September 2021

    Councillors have stopped worrying about unpopular decisions and probably to the surprise of many this has not led to a revolt at the polls, says Blair Mcpherson.

  • An artificial business solution

    17 August 2021

    Blair Mcpherson says that if organisations are driven by cost and efficiency they will be led by AI, but if they are driven by values and ethics they will be led by humans.

  • Losing the confidence of members

    09 July 2021

    It’s crucial for managers to keep the confidence of members, says Blair McPherson. ‘But the trouble is they are increasingly reliant on the information they’re fed by their bosses.’

  • Time is not on the side of chief executives who need to prove themselves

    28 April 2021

    Blair Mcpherson looks at how long chief executives have to prove themselves before a lack of progress creates doubts about their ability to deliver.

  • Management melodrama dents organisational credibility

    05 March 2021

    Bosses who have difficulty making decisions and whose approach is best described as tactical cause ‘confusion, frustration and outright embarrassment’, says Blair Mcpherson

  • Why is central government not listening?

    16 February 2021

    The pandemic has given local authorities the opportunity to shine  and demonstrate to government that we can work effectively together, argues Blair Mcpherson.

  • Insiders only 

    05 February 2021

    Blair Mcpherson explains why he believes business sector high flyers decide local government is not for them.

  • Be a dictator but be a nice one 

    18 January 2021

    In difficult and uncertain times clarity and direction assume a greater importance and people management skills never go out of fashion, says Blair Mcpherson.

  • Officers work for members – or do they?

    02 December 2020

    Blair McPherson says his old boss was right to remind officers that they work for members  - ‘but I’m sure most members would agree it’s not that simple’.