Gordon Brown has become the next Prime Minister. He is realising a dream he has had for many years; he like any new leader he is keen to meet the expectations of others and his first 90 days in office will be watched eagerly by many. Here are some tips for Gordon
– Be clear about how you will be judged by others. This is particularly important now you are on the world’s political stage. Education and affordable housing are two of your key concerns, but you also say the NHS is his “immediate priority”. It is important not to promise too much. It is much better to under promise and over deliver.
– You have promised an end to spin. A brave step! Be bold Gordon, just because you are not familiar with everything in your new role, does not mean you cannot challenge the status quo. Spin has been very damaging for New Labour. Now is your chance to right the wrong.
– If you make a mistake, own up and take steps to rectify it quickly. You have admitted that Iraq is “a divisive issue for our party and our country” and pledged to “learn lessons that need to be learned”. Talk is cheap, let’s hope you means what you have pledged.
– A new role is very exciting, with fresh new faces and often a new office. However busy things get, it is vital to create thinking time. Step back and make sure you allocate time to think, whether it is listening to your I-pod, walking or working out in the gym.
– Go with your heart. Analysis of factual information is important however from time to time we all get hunches or insights into a specific situation or issue. To improve your intuition, the following are useful:
Get as much research and information about a subject
Allow some reflective time to mull over and consider the options
Often and quite suddenly an idea will pop into your head which may be the answer to the question(s) you have been mulling over
Use people you trust as a sounding board to check out your intuition
– It is easy to be critical of the person you have taken over from; however it is important not to play the victim. You will almost certainly have inherited some policy decisions that have been made that you can’t reverse. You can however have the courage of your convictions and make changes if needed.
– There will not be enough resources so it is important to identify where energy should be focused. Change is difficult when a new person takes over at the top and it is important this is recognised and all are clear on what the new priorities are.
– Finally Gordon, be aware of people who suck up to you. All sorts of people will crawl out of the woodwork and suddenly want to be your new best friend.