Tuesday, 14 December 2010

Exclusive! Bethlehem shepherds demand Personal Protective Equipment!

As revealed earlier this week, previously ignored fragments of the Dead Sea Scrolls have been found to contain the diary entries of Malachi Barnabas, a 1st Century HR Officer working in the Bethlehem area of Israel.

World Exclusive! The Secret Diary of a First Century HR Officer.

Today, HR Case Studies publishes a further extract from his diaries.
Flipping typical, isn't it? HR gets a phone call to come and sort a problem out, and then by the time you arrive, suddenly there's not a problem anymore!

Yesterday morning I got a message from a local Trade Union representative telling me that some of his members were raising a collective grievance over lack of personal protective equipment. Seems there was a bunch of shepherds up in the fields above Bethlehem who were having a number of problems. It makes me laugh though: this bunch are so pretentious that they don't even call themselves shepherds any more - they reckon they are (wait for it) Nocturnal Pasture Operatives!

And there's me just expecting the normal request for blankets and animal skin jackets. If only! This delicate bunch were asking for some form of eye cover to protect themselves against some bright lights that have apparently been keeping them awake at night. Wouldn't be so bad if that was the end of it, but they were all asking for ear plugs as well. The feeble bunch have been losing beauty sleep because of loud singing in the area. Personally I suspect it will have been the end of conference knees up at the CIPD (Central Israel Pharisees Department (CIPD) get-together in Bethlehem, but they weren't so sure. I might need to have a word with the boss of the shepherds, because I'm not sure how seriously he's implemented the alcohol at work policy in his region.

But - and this is what really irritates me - I spend half the evening trecking up the hillside to meet this lot, practising my negotiation techniques on the way, and when I get there, far from a bunch of seething shepherds waiting for me, there's just one straggler.

According to him, one of his sheep had strayed off, and while he was chasing after it, the light and the noise that they'd been talking about got brighter and louder, but when he returned, all of his colleagues had cleared off.

At least they'd left him a note, though:

Sorry to leave without you. Party in stable round the back of The Emperor's Arms in Bethlehem. Hope to see you later.

I'd have nipped there myself if I hadn't been so busy. Got lots of problems with the migrant workforce in this area.
Check out HR Case Studies tomorrow for a further instalment.

1 comment:

  1. Why Malachi decided to embark on this career in HR I’ll never know! Glorified welfare officer if you ask me. Never know what to say when people ask me what he does. Mention HR and they’ve always got a tale to tell about someone they know who’s been hard done to by the HR department.

    The sooner this survey thing is over if you ask me. No doubt someone will leave the parchment on the back of a donkey and the whole place will be up in arms. Or is that just me being cynical?

    And what’s this about not being home in time for tea? Visiting shepherds, do you think I was born yesterday?

    Should have gone into teaching M – at least the holidays were better!

    Rachael Barnabas