Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Coping using maths

I was doing OK. All was well. Then I tipped. I think it was the 27th, or maybe 270th, person who asked me how I was going to cope during the forthcoming vacancy - my colleague here at Holy Trinity and Trendlewood is leaving in a couple of weeks - and I wondered if psychologically, mentally and emotionally everyone seems to expect the place to crash and burn. It gave me a bit of an adrenalin rush. Last time I had one of those a doctor told me to sort my life out. I did.

So this time I'll be fine. The parish might fall apart (unlikely, but parishes can do this at any time not just during vacancies) but I won't. Trust me. I won't.

This is because, and here's a cunning technique, instead of me working three times as hard (Ken did twice as much as me most days) I'm going to work 1% harder and so are all of us. Volunteers, staff, hangers-on and those not yet aware they are about to belong - all of us will have 1% more to do. For every hour you gave previously give an hour and (get this) 36 seconds.

Another way of thinking about it (allowing for the fact that 36 seconds isn't that useful alone). There are roughly 300 or so of us here. We can find 60 hours a week by all offering 12 minutes extra. Or an hour a month. Or six hours twice during the next year. I'll give my 12 minutes by shouting at people and asking them to do things. I'll do it nicely. OK?

We can manage this. Repeat after me. We can manage this. I can't but we can. None of us is as useful as all of us.


Mike Peatman said...


only you could be creative enough to devise a mathematical solution to a staffing deficiency.


Anonymous said...

A cunning plan - I wonder if it will work. DK

dmk said...

Excellent. I thought you weren't into maths?

St said...

Bit complex. I'm not into processes very much but I like numbers far too much for my own good.