I’m writing this on the train back to Newcastle, having left a rather unseasonally sticky London behind me. I’m smiling to myself at one of those fantastically tautological announcements only train companies can make:
“I’m afraid we can’t serve hot drinks from the trolley tonight. This is due to a malfunction on the trolley.”
Glad they pointed that last bit out, cause it might have been, er, well… There was another classic on the tube yesterday.
“I’d like to apologise for the slight delay to your journey. The reason for this is we haven’t been given a signal to proceed.”
Again I felt much better informed for knowing that the driver hadn’t just forgotten how to drive the train…
…anyway, speaking of journeys, I’ve been doing quite a few sustainability and related workshops recently. The gist of the sessions is always the same:
“to do sustainability properly you have to integrate it into all your business processes”
It has been fascinating watching delegates struggle with the fact that they might actually have to do something. They oscillate back and forth between the extremes of “this is not my problem” and “I’m up for the challenge”. This is a personal journey they have to make and I (and you) can only gently help them on their way.
Some of their pronouncements sound like the train announcers above:
“Personally I’m not interested in sustainability. Because it’s not something I think about.”
Barracking them or patronising them would just send them back into their happy state of ignorance. You’ve just got to help them along the path – as always, questions are more useful than arguments. And as Confucious (or Lao-tzu) is said to have said – the journey of 1000 miles begins with a single step, so don’t rush’em.