In keeping with the British summer, it's raining as I write. I am sitting reflecting over the last four weeks of activity, thinking that for a quiet month of training how busy it has been. Bizarre comment I know but sometimes there is a need to do what I call the invisible stuff, the work that needs to be done but does not always contribute to the bottom line...
Our first £1m sale - yes, 1 million pound sale - and for a training and development company it is a huge piece of work. I now face the really nice problem of resourcing it and making sure that it astonishes all those who come into contact with it, a task I am really looking forward to getting my teeth into. Oh and by the way, guess who was instrumental in winning it?
A new sales manager (yes, a new member of staff in this current economic environment) who is already making a difference - I can now see how much work I had before when I look at how many people we have employed to cover my role, as it was then. The sales team are starting to look a little happier and my trainers are over the moon that they have so much more of my support, and it shows in the results we are achieving.
I always find it interesting at this time of year when all the funding contracts start to kick in (as well as the panic) so I look forward to seeing the contracts as they come in - nine months to deliver 12 months worth of forecasts - isn't there a better way to manage this?
Has anyone seen the Conservative's Green Paper on training? If you haven't, you should, it makes for some interesting reading. It talks about refocusing Train to Gain – or Assess to Gain, as I think it should be called – to pay employers directly for the provision of real apprenticeships, freeing training providers from pointless bureaucracy and other such bold statements – we will have to watch and wait to see how this develops.
On a final note (excuse the pun) 'Maestro' is an amazing TV programme and has me hooked, the best 'reality show' ever and the dedication of the contestants is wonderful to watch. I wonder what the conductor trainer makes of it (if you don't know what I mean, read my earlier diary entries to find out) but I will say, he/she is not on that panel!