Latest Blogs

Is sleep the answer to a healthier life? by Catriona Cookson

I noticed over the last few weeks as we left one year and entered another, there was a lot of coverage about sleep and how important it is, not just important but really important! I heard the Chief Executive of the Mental Health Foundation asked on television “What is the one thing we could all do in 2020 to improve our mental health?” His answer was simple – “Get more sleep”

Last week on my commute to work I listened to a fascinating Desert Island Discs episode – even if DIC is not your thing, this one s well worth a listen! The guest on the 8th December 2019 episode is Professor Russell Foster, professor of circadian neuroscience at the University of Oxford. For a man whose specialist knowledge is sleep and rest, he is fizzing with energy and a fascinating guest. He describes sleep as “the single most important health behaviour we have”.

So, while we are all full of good intentions at the start of the New Year, going to bed a little earlier may be one of the easier ones on your list to aim for. And if you haven’t had your flu jab yet and think we haven’t seen the worst of the winter …an interesting aside from the Prof was to have your flu jab in the morning as you produce more antibodies then so it will be more effective!

So take more exercise, eat well, moderate your drinking by all means but for a healthy 2020, find time for some more sleep!


The Art of Being A Good Leaver…….by Catriona Cookson

As all the news channels continue to be dominated by the Harry and Meghan scenario and everyone weighs in with their views it got me thinking about the whole topic of being a good leaver.

While their intentions may well be justified, and I do think the whole scenario is actually quite sad…. I can’t help thinking they have gone about it the wrong way. In too many years in recruitment , I’ve always encouraged people to leave on good terms from their current employer …to be a good leaver …because although you may not realise it now, your paths may cross again at some time in the future with your current colleagues and/or boss.

If it’s true that Harry and Meghan either didn’t tell the Queen or chose not to do as she asked …it really is the equivalent of boasting to your colleagues about your new job and organising your leaving drinks before you’ve told your boss ….never a good move! Even if you are at the stage where you really can’t stand the place any more, just bide your time. If for example you’re trying to negotiate your notice period, then do absolutely everything your boss asks re managing your news to your team / business.

Many of you may have started the New Year intent on moving on from your current role, and in the heady rush of excitement when you’re ready to go ……just remember “Always Be A Good Leaver”

Harry and Megan Waving

Should job adverts tell it how it really is? by Catriona Cookson

Whatever your views on Dominic Cummings, his recent advertisement for an assistant attracted a lot of attention. While clearly an unconventional advert and leaving to one side you can’t specify you are looking for candidates to be young and recently graduated (what do you meant you don’t want someone who lived through the last Gulf War and the Falklands crisis ?!?) …..dare I say it, I actually quite liked the advert.

It makes it very clear that work will dominate everything and tough luck if you you’ve got a class on Wednesdays or theatre tickets on Thursday …you won’t be going! And while the language is harsh “I’ll bin you within weeks if you don’t fit”… least you know where you stand!

And how will DC select this person …will he have to follow standard procedures or will he be allowed to adopt his own maverick approach? Will he use some kind of psychometric profiling or situational judgement questions used by the Civil Service or maybe some of the new interactive video games which some companies are now using?

Whatever your views, there’s no denying it’s a fascinating role…interesting to see who ultimately is selected …..and chooses to accept!


Culture Shock(ing) Rules – by Davey Peyton

As the UK heads towards another election it feels like everyone is just about ready for a bit of a change. That might be a new role, a new company or just a new way of getting things done.

In a recent article the Harvard Business Review looked at Ben Horowitz’s new book and his mention of ‘shocking rules’ that divert from the norm to create a sense of ritualistic identity.

From Amazon’s buying cheap doors to make their desks to the inclusivity of Genghis Khan there’s a wide range discussed here

How does your company stack up and what ‘shocking rules’ if any do you have? Do you love them or loath them and is there anything new you’d like to see?

It’s something we are hearing more about and why we enjoy really getting to know our clients as their culture is important to them and it’s more and more important to everyone we speak to.

So if you want help finding that shock drop us a message.

DCP Blog


Thinking of looking for a career move in the New Year …are you sure? by Catriona Cookson

Before your attention turns to the socialising and partying that December brings, it’s worth stopping for a moment to think ahead to the New Year. With a few days off over the Christmas break many people turn their thoughts to the year ahead and decide it’s time for a move.

But is it? This might seem odd coming from a recruiter as clearly it would seem to be in our interests to have lots of new people eager for a move in early January. However, in the same way a gym membership seems like a good idea on the 2nd of January and turns out to be a big waste of time (and money), I’d ask you to mull over the following with your mince pies …..

Why are you looking for a move?

What does “I’m looking for a new challenge really mean to you?”

What would you do if your current employer offered you a different role / promotion / more money?

All of the above are so important because if you’re not fully committed to moving, the chances are you’ll stay.! That old saying is very true – “If you’ll go for money, you’ll stay for money!” So, once you have satisfied yourself that it’s time to go, think about the logistics.

Are you on an out of town project? Can you be free for interviews, at least on a Friday?

It sounds a silly question but while a lot of interviewing can take place via Skype etc … still need to be available to meet people in person !

So, enjoy your Christmas break , have a think about your career and if it’s the right time to move then please do get in touch . If not , then please contact us at any time in the future and we’ll be happy to help.

CEC Blog

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