Sunday 26 October 2014

If Only Pete Could Make Tea

Traders of an older age may remember that any reasonable size business had a tea lady (there could have been tea-men as well but industry was not so enlightened back then).

The Tea Lady would push a trolley around each work area at a set time each morning and afternoon and dispense cups of tea from an urn. The arrival of the Tea Lady was a great excuse to down pens or tools and head over to the urn for a cuppa and a chat. And of course this seemingly innocent get together was in fact an incredibly important part of the information technology of that age.

Not only did the tea lady get to hear, and join in, the discussions at that work area but she had been privy to the discussions at the previous work areas as well. Her knowledge of daily news became a key ingredient in informing employees of what was happening in their neighbourhood.

Businesses soon found that Tea Ladies could be dispensed with and replaced with tea and coffee machines that provided no information at all. Financially that was probably a smart move. Workers got back to work quicker and a wage was saved. At the risk of being called old fashioned I contend that industry lost a whole lot more than it gained.

But back to Guru Pete. Our Pete performs an essential task around QVM as one of our cleaning staff and, as productive as he is (I don’t want his bosses to think he ever deviates from his assigned tasks), Pete is able to provide his own brand of information technology. How often do you hear traders say “What is happening Pete?” Pete knows what is happening around the place as he works from one end of the market to the other and his contribution is certainly more than just the sum of his cleaning tasks. We could call him an extremely important cog in the machinery that keeps our market operating (and informed).

If he could just make a cup of tea I would be really happy.

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27/10/2014 13:59:44 Pete "I could imagine him In a little Apron, maybe we could get his trolley modified to carry a tea urn" Leah