Crozier breaks cover

Royal Mail chief executive Adam Crozier made a rare appearance on Radio Four’s Today programme this morning to put his case for the appalling mess that the Royal Mail is digging itself deeper into every day.

Last Updated: 31 Aug 2010
The news that we may be in for weeks or even months more disruption to the postal service is not only a serious matter for businesses all over the country, it is also meat and drink to the Royal Mail’s increasingly aggressive rivals. A simple fact of modern commercial life - one which seems to have totally escaped the notice of the striking posties – is that every hour of disruption further weakens the Royal Mail’s already shaky prospects for long term recovery.

Putting aside Crozier’s role in creating the current crisis for a moment – as boss he must take his share of the opprobium – to listen to his plea that all he is asking of his workers is that they work all the hours they are paid to work before going onto overtime rates was to step through a Life on Mars-style timewarp back into the strike-torn 1970s. He was like a tongue-tied version of Michael Edwardes taking on the might of British Leyland’s equally bolshy workforce. And we all know what happened to them…

But it was Crozier’s stark revelation that the Royal Mail’s rivals are 40% more efficient and pay their staff 25% less that was the real take home message from the interview. Unless its entire workforce wakes up to the reality of what those numbers actually mean, and to the fact that Royal Mail is no longer a state monopoly but has to earn its living these days like the rest of us, then none of them – from the sorting office to the boardroom – deserves to keep their jobs.

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