The latest book from Tony Morden


Joined up thinking for fragmented times


The subject of this Book is the management of dilemmas. The Book defines and describes the process of Dilemma Management. And it illustrates this process with a variety of Case Examples from business, politics, healthcare, procurement, security, sport, and more generally from the taxpayer-funded public sector.

"Dilemma Management" is a harsh work for the harsh and changing times in the UK. The Book has been written to challenge the Reader; maybe even to disconcert him or her. The Author makes absolutely no apology for questioning outdated professional wisdoms or established paradigms, arguing that a large upward step change is urgently needed in professional mindset and competence in the country, for instance in a post-Coronavirus era.

"It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his salary depends on his not understanding it." (Upton Sinclair - US Author)

One of the author’s key objectives in writing this Book is to explain and to assert the logic for the implementation and use of a Dilemma Management capability in the critical context of an urgent UK requirement for a significant upward step-change in the professionalisation of leadership, entrepreneurial, managerial, political, public, healthcare, charitable, Third Sector and administrative process.

The author argues that the UK is now a post-Imperial / post-colonial trading nation that has (whether it likes it or not) no choice but to rely on itself to earn its keep. It can (i) no longer take for granted, nor (ii) rely on others (such as the various international sources of borrowed funds; wealthy taxpayers who can easily enough transfer their money and investments abroad, offshore, or to British-controlled tax havens; the European Union; the traditional sources of oil-based wealth; the so-called “special relationship” with the USA (?); or a rapidly globalising China) to assist it or to bail it out from the historical consequences (iii) of unsustainable policies, expenditures or commitments; and (iv) the complicating fact of having lived for so long beyond its means in the pursuit of what are now routinely described as individualistic, consumerist, materialistic, and (v) ultimately non-communitarian, non-neighbourhood, and environmentally unfriendly ends.

The need for this step change is likely to be made all the more critical in a post-Brexit UK scenario characterised (i) by the developing consequences of an obsolescent, and outdated “installed base” of (so-called “elite”?) social class and academic conditioning; (ii) by the inevitable reduction of material, social, cultural, and media expectations or complacency; (iii) by the future need for the making of harsh political, commercial, environmental and economic choices in an increasingly resource-constrained and internationally competitive environment; and in which (iv) there are guaranteed to be (politically significant) losers as well as winners within communities and neighbourhoods; all of this exacerbated (v) by a growing North – South and London-centric divide in the UK.

"There is no such thing as a systemic failure - only a failure of responsibility"

‘ “Dilemma Management” has proven to be horribly prescient since its publication, for instance in respect of ongoing dilemmas (and lack of compliance) associated with Coronavirus; issues of personal responsibility and social cohesion; the psychologically terrifying Internet and social media corruption of UK Minors; unsustainable expectation and boredom thresholds in the UK; the calamitous shortcomings of the UK media; the failures of Webbist paradigms in the Civil and Public Service; potentially disastrous failures in the fields of CPD, Professionalism and Performance Management; and dilemma issues associated with conflicting or irreconcilable (?) pressures (i) for education, health, social care, and the environment; and (ii) the fragmented behaviour of single-interest / pressure groups in general’ (source: recent correspondence).

"Coronavirus? What Coronavirus?"

" What is reasonable behaviour during a Pandemic? Should the rules be properly enforced so that everybody complies? And what are the Capability issues involved (Chapter 28)"