Thursday, 9 September 2010
Another Emma speech
IBM are holding a conference on "Cities for a Sustainable Future". The giant company has a special interest in cities; several councils have already handed over most of their functions to IBM. On Day One of the conference yesterday Emma Harrison, "Entrepreneur and Chairman of A4e", spoke on "Wellbeing". Her contribution is summarised on the Amplified site. What strikes one first is the sheer banality of her speech. Sustainabilty, she says, means nothing to the people out there [really?] and should be changed to, "It helps people find jobs". She goes on, "Every decision you make ask yourself: is it going to improve the lives of people? If it won't - then don't do it!" She then cites her recent success on "Who Knows Best?" and then offers advice which, in the summary, is confused, but which boils down to "Ask people to do it - don't do it to people". The rest of it is just variations on that message, which no doubt those at the conference found very helpful. I suppose that Mrs Harrison's credentials, i.e. profits, command the respect of other business leaders. But one wonders what they really make of her "advice".