This month, economist Will Hutton scrutinises John Kay's new book The Truth About Markets for MT. Hutton, CEO of the Work Foundation and author of The State We're In, finds he is easily persuaded by Kay's explanations of the issues that economists have grappled with ever since the fall of communism, such as why did market economies outperform socialist ones? Hutton, a former editor-in-chief of the Observer, published his latest book The World We're In last year.
Richard Reeves has been a newspaper journalist, government adviser, academic, think-tanker and consultant. Now he's a 'portfolio worker - a nicer way of saying you haven't yet decided what you want to be when you grow up'. As well as being a regular MT columnist, he advises companies on HR strategy. His latest obsession is the relationship between happiness and economic progress. 'Money isn't that important to our wellbeing. But don't tell my clients (or the MT section editor) I said that.'
Chris Blackhurst, the London Evening Standard's City editor, is a journalist with a broadly trodden beat as ex-deputy editor of the Independent, the Independent on Sunday and the Express. Here, he interviews Sir Richard Sykes, ex-GlaxoSmithKline boss who heads Imperial College, London. Expecting to find someone nostalgic for corporate superstardom, Chris came away feeling jealous. 'He's got this great job, surrounded by brilliant academics.' Another change, Chris?
Despite having six novels, eight business books, a BBC TV series and a 15-year career as a conference speaker and business coach under her belt, Judi James' main claim to fame is her appearance on Big Brother's Little Brother as a behaviour expert. 'All I get asked now is what Dermot O'Leary's like!' she exclaims. By turns frustrated and amused by daily workplace shenanigans, the author of The Office Jungle gives us her more optimistic take on politics at work.
MT regular Guy Browning's sceptical view of office politics stems from having had two of the worst bosses known to humanity. They were both bad in completely different ways and one was brought in to manage the other. It was enough to supply four years of the Office Politics column in the Guardian, and a determination never to have another boss. Guy is the author of numerous business books and finds he can write a new one every time he has another child.
German-born illustrator Olivier Kugler provides the reportage-style images that accompany our how-to feature on conferences this month. Since he graduated from the School of Visual Arts in New York last year, Kugler's work (all drawn on location) has appeared in such titles as the New York Times and Inc Magazine. Kugler's most memorable assignment was for Harpers, when he was asked to illustrate a piece on a man fixated by the subway system. 'He even forged his ID so he could drive the trains.'