Today I’m meeting a potentially new client located on the northern beaches of Sydney. A small business in Australia (25 employees) but globally they employ over 2,000 employees with an annual turnover of nearly half a billion euros. I really want this one so spend even more time than usual researching their business and finding out as much as I can about their key stakeholders.
The meeting goes well – the MD, CFO and the payroll person all meet me together and pepper me with questions. I return the favour and complete a quick HR audit as we go along. This is a very handy tool to have and clients like it a lot. It’s very professional and helps shape the initial interview. To start with they’re looking for help on some specific HR projects with a view to a longer-term arrangement involving a regualr HR presence on-site.
I hope to get a favourable response in a few days’ time. Meanwhile, I need to get back into town for a lunch meeting with an old colleague of mine (he’s an accountant) who needs to discuss an HR problem he has with one of his clients. It turns out that my friend is being sexually harassed by a female manager who works for one of his best clients. Not surprisingly he doesn’t know what to do about it. Female on male sexual harassment is rare but when it happens it’s just as pernicious and even more difficult to deal with especially when it’s one of your client’s employees doing the harassing. I advise him that he needs to raise the issue with the MD of the Company as soon as he can. It’s clearly a very delicate situation which needs immediate attention although I suspect it won’t have a good outcome. These sorts of issues rarely do.
My afternoon is spent back in the office returning calls and preparing for the Ops Manager interviews with my blue-collar client out west. Suddenly, my day seems a bit quiet although it’s already 5pm. Thankfully, I have a networking do on tonight – not that I’m a great fan of these types of events but I’m in the mood for a bit of socialising. I remind myself that it is, in fact, a networking event and not a netdrinking or neteating occasion but it’s sometimes difficult to remember that!
I eventually get home around 10.30pm. Another reasonably early night. Big drive tomorrow out west…