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Monday, 13 October 2008

MEMO From RBS Director of Equalities

From: Sam Duggs, Director of Equalities, RBS
To: All staff

Good morning all and welcome to the State sector!

I have been appointed to the board as one of the government's new Executive Directors, to help bring a new direction to RBS as a forward facing institution providing fair and accessible financial services to citizens. To achieve this, we need to remind ourselves of our new core values, our social mission statement and our equalities and diversity agenda.

1. Lap dancing clubs are no longer a suitable venue for corporate entertainment. Departmental managers have been allocated block-passes to the new Museum of Menstruation which is currently running an exciting exhibition on the Glory of Hormones, and bank staff will be expected to undertake entertainment duties either at this or similar virtuous and educational venues.

2. The drinking of alcohol leads to personal degradation and is no part of the duties of the bank's staff. All alcohol consumption during working hours is henceforth banned.

3. Lunch on expenses may extend to a modest cold refreshment for each person; up to two sandwiches, a bag of crisps and a small bottle of mineral water per person will be considered the norm.

4. Work-life balance is critical for personal well being. Staff are discouraged from working in excess of thirty hours per week.

5. Female staff will no longer be required to sexualise themselves. High heels, hemlines above the patella, exposed cleavage and breast-enhancing brassieres are therefore no longer considered acceptable work dress. Jewellery should be plain and confined to a ring and a pair of earrings, and makeup is discouraged.

6. Departmental managers have been given details of a number of social awareness workshops that staff must attend over the next few months. We have arranged an exciting series of guest speakers including Sylvia Clit from the Haringay Collective who manages debt counselling services to the Herbert Morrison Estate.

7. Stress management sessions have been organised for lunchtime well-being. Aromatherapy, Crystal Healing, Reiki and Nepalese Chanting will be available. A free snack of beansprouts and a nettle 'smoothie' is included.

8. Management consultants with wide experience in the NHS will conduct an immediate remuneration review to ensure that any gender bias in the bank's rewards structures is eliminated. The previous bonus structure has been dismantled.

9. In the interests of gender equality, ties are henceforth banned from the office. Male staff are reminded that in place of expensive Jermyn Street shirts, the bank's own range of Freetrade polyester shirts made by an amputees' co-operative in Mogadishu will be available from the new Freetrade Kiosk in the main building atrium.

I am sure you will find the transition into the State sector far less painful than you imagined. For those at risk of transition stress, counselling sessions will be available until next March. I will write again shortly with details of the exciting Winterval of Diversity we have planned.

Yours empathetically,

Sam Duggs


patently said...

"social awareness workshops" - a typo, surely? Should it not be "socialism awareness workshops"

Bill Quango MP said...

To Sam Duggs

Hi, great yah! Just a few quick questions to be getting along with.
Now the guys and girls are asking me.. do they get 28 days holiday as well as the 28 days sick pay?
Is it necessary to go on an essential workshop NVQ/Diploma training course for two days every week?
Losing the bonuses is now made up for by final salary gold plated pensions?
Does everyone need to join Unite or just non-management ?
Is it really necessary to no longer answer telephones,respond to emails,reply to mail or engage in any way with our customers except to send out flyers that boast of our achievements in key targeted sectors.
Is it completely necessary to divest ourselves of all our armaments,tobacco, oil,gas,airlines and automobile clients?
And finally we are having trouble with Ms Harman's EQUAL PAY FOR UNEQUAL work as its very confusing and we are not sure who is equal to whom. A female data entry clerk is not earning the same as a male derivative trader yet both work 48+ hours.Should she now be paid the same? Or does the Part time cleaner on £5.55 now become the same wage for the full time receptionist.

Graham Flanger
Corporate liaison executive.

Nick von Mises said...

Sam Duggs,

I was wondering if perhaps my department's client-facing activities should now be allocated on a means-tested and needs-based system. To wit, should I now only trade multi-million pound FX spot and forwards with counterparties that cannot possibly meet settlement. Some of the funds managers next door are also wondering if they should now deliberately overpay for stocks and bonds in order to "help" troubled market participants


Head of FX Trading Desk

Nick von Mises said...


Quick note. Is there any guidance on what a "diversified portfolio" would now contain now we are shifting to the public sector notions of diversity.


Raedwald said...

Citizen Flanger -

1. Only the most junior staff will have 28 days holiday. Staff with 20 years' service or more will enjoy the usual 40 days. Certified sickness is paid at full pay for up to 12 months, and after this at the discretion of your departmental manager.

2. All members of staff will be entitled to their right to attend training or further education at the bank's expense, although time off for study in excess of one day per week for 39 weeks a year plus 10 days per year 'revision leave' must be agreed in advance with your departmental manager.

3. I'm afraid we can't offer this. We are still negotiating with the Treasury for a contributory final salary scheme, though; it is anticipated that employees will contribute 5% of salary and the bank will match this with 25% employer's contribution. This is worse than the civil service scheme, I'm afraid.

4. We would encourage all staff to join a Trade Union.

5. Managing customer demand by ignoring it is a highly cost-effective strategy. With your holiday allowance, sickness and study leave, you're only likely to be in the office for 16 weeks a year anyway. The bank's new PR Division will continue to assure customers of the fantastic service we're providing.

6. Whilst we make no judgements on which businesses are 'ethical' or not, new procedures will require corporate recipients of our services to submit satisfactory equalities and diversity strategies, GLBT equality plans, carbon reduction strategies, minimum pay policies, fair childcare arrangements and have formal worker representation on their boards. If they can find the right email address to send them to.

7. A female data entry clerk, particularly a not very competent one, may suffer the same levels of workplace stress as a male derivatives trader. Why should they not earn the same? All workers are victims, and should be rewarded in accordance with the burden of their victimhood.

Please join us for the Tai-Chi workshop before the markets open tomorrow - I feel you have issues that you need to share.



Raedwald said...

Comrade Nick -

Not all companies should be judged on their financial strength; we would like to move to a trading methodology that evaluated financial actors on the quality of their equalities and diversity strategies, GLBT equality plans, carbon reduction strategies, minimum pay policies and fair childcare arrangements rather than their ability to meet settlements.

You'll catch on.



William Gruff said...

You are all a bunch of saxist (That's not a typo; the word is invariably pronounced as typed.) shits, and I claim my five re-oderised (also not a typo)tampons.

Together we can wipe out oppressive phallic determinism and I think we should celebrate the opportunities afforded by Raedwald's recognition of Sam's guiding sense of mission. Perhaps we could all form a circle and join hands?

Now who would like to start the chant?

Bill Quango MP said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Bill Quango MP said...

Thank you for prompt response.
Having discussed the issues with some of your colleagues I firmly believe that we do actually speak the same language. Managementspeak.
I look forward to working with you for the next 35 years while the banks are in this temporary position.

And many thanks for the Inuit dream catcher and Yaqui tea set.

Graham Flanger
Corporate liaison executive.

Surreptitious Evil said...

Dear Sam,

As you are probably not aware, having just joined the Board, that the ethics policy for RBS corporate customer acquisition is based upon the "Jacqueline Test".

The Gold Group having been excellent customers for what, it has to be said, was an appallingly stodgy (if Episcopalian rather than the Presbyterian Bank on the Mound) organisation, what should we now do?

Yours explicitly,


Devil's Kitchen said...

Dear Sam,

Thank you for your memo.

You may do things that way in the Civil Service, but I absolutely refuse to wipe my arse with a big pile of bank-notes before setting fire to said heap of my clients' money each and every morning.

Please go suck on a shotgun.

Never yours,

Nick Flannagan
(Ex-) Corporate Executive

P.S. Fuck you.

Old Holborn said...

Ms Suggs.

I am writing from the Neasdon branch of RBS and as a dyslexic, would be grateful if you could clarify that my position as currency trader will in no way be endangered by the latest technology recently placed on my desk. A computer.

I feel threatened every time I look at it. My GP says it could be adding to my general anxiety levels and has increased my Prozac to compensate.

Why can't I go back to the old way of just shouting at the birds here to write stuff down for me?

PS. Why did we have to move the Sexual Harrassment forms from the bottom drawer of the filing cabinet to the top? No fun anymore.


Jeremy Cholmondley-Hunter-Gruntfuttock

Neasdon RBS - Forex Desk.