The First Employee

This was the scary bit. C.C.Q. had two bosses. Hugh and Rob.

A Board of Directors. Hugh, Rob, James and me.

Background advice and support. Rob’s family.

Even professional advisers. A Solicitor (later changed) and an Accountant. He is a family connection too.

But no employees. (Unless you count the Junior Paper Shredder).

junior paper shredder                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        trash can

For a real business employees are important. That is the way the business grows and the economy grows.

 real employees

But it is scary. We were about to become responsible for a member of staff with all the rights and obligations inherent in employment. Whoever we chose would have to be paid whether we had work for them to do or not. We had no idea at that time quite how difficult it is to find the right shaped peg for the right shaped hole. But even without such anxieties, it was still scary.

Since then we have had to grapple with job agencies, advertisements, head-hunters and the rest of the vast industry lurking out there in the jungle. All claim to possess a magic wand which will produce the right person for us like a rabbit from a hat. Their spells are almost as diverse as their results, and equally unpredictable.

rabbit in hat

But back in those days of innocence I was still responsible for running the local branch of the Pony Club. Not an organisation which claimed any such magic powers. Chatting one day to a member who was shortly to graduate from Oxford, I told her about C.C.Q. She knew just the person for our job. She was quite right: she did. He joined the company as soon as he graduated. He excelled at his job, was willing and ready to learn and stayed for long enough to be sorely missed when he eventually set out for pastures new.

It was all too easy. Why on earth did other companies make such a fuss about the problems of finding high quality staff?

Abracadabra. The rabbit jumped out of the hat. No problem… or should I call it beginner’s luck?

Don’t miss next week’s blog. It will include my Christmas present to you.


6 thoughts on “The First Employee

    • I read your comment to the Junior Paper Shredder. She reminded me of a predecessor of hers who once came fishing with us. We were using bread as the bait and the dog was tempted. We were soon racing to the vet with the line coming out of her mouth. She was hooked too. The vet glanced at her:
      “I am afraid I shall have to cut off the head.” As I started to come round I heard him add “I meant the head of the hook.” Even that fortunately proved unnecessary.

  1. My dear Meriel.
    We are enjoying your blog. Yes, it is scary taking on new members of staff. We took on Ruth at Kianjibbi last February – a totally unknown quantity – with all the attendant responsibilities and obligations – but so far the outcome has been very satisfactory.
    With our love and best wishes for a Happy Christmas and a very successful year in 2014.
    Tony and Julia

  2. Such suspense–how will you find the next employee? Will the next blog enlighten us? Your blog style is a pleasure, and thanks for avoiding that curse of so many blogs–the indiscriminate use of the exclamation mark

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