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Barclays (Photo credit: bbodien)

Antony Jenkins, the new CEO of Barclays, has been in the of press a lot this week. Launching the new Bank strategy, Jenkins has an unenviable task. I felt a bit sorry for him as he took a grilling from Jeff Randall on Sky News.

“My overall message today is simple. Barclays is changing,” Jenkins promised. “There will be no going back to the old way of doing things. We get it. We are changing the way we do business, we are changing the type of business we do, and we are setting a new course for the future of Barclays.” (‘Guardian’ newspaper)

Jenkins announced new corporate values: respect, integrity, service, excellence and stewardship. Jenkins looked uncomfortable when challenged by Jeff Randall on Sky News – ‘they’re a bit David Brentish, were they dreamt up by a Junior Spin Doctor?’ asked Randall.

‘Changing culture is a long-term prospect’ Jenkins replied. The Guardian goes on to say that staff in the Investment Bank reportedly jeered when culture change was discussed.

I wonder what all this means to the staff in the contact centres? Managers and team leaders better be acting in line the values pretty quickly. Otherwise all Jenkins has done is produce a document that will bring contempt, discouragement, derision and, eventually, staff turnover.

In her book ‘More Time to Think, Nancy Kline writes that Organisations list values. But they don’t live them. And people hate that. They really, really hate it. They would rather not have organisational values than to see their leaders live their opposites.