Wednesday, February 4, 2009

I am working here!

I haven’t reported much on work issues, so I’ll record something to show I’m not a tourist here. Last Friday I gave a presentation to the AGM of NWADO (North West Association of Development Associations). I talked about the use of management standards (which they can find on the net if and when they have an internet connection). Then I went on to talk about the Investors in People framework as a tool for managing change and for self-assessment. It seemed to go down well – but maybe they were being polite.

On Monday I held a full day of training on the management of change, with thirteen representatives of the leading Civil Society Organisations. The content focussed on both change within organisations and in the wider society. The biggest such change on the horizon is decentralisation, although the government in Yaoundé seems to be dragging its feet. The feedback sheets were positive and will help me in delivering the same workshop again, but with some changes. I'm putting together a pack for trainers on the management of change to leave behind me.

Oh, yes, Cameroonian time. There is a local tendency here to be very, very, flexible about timing. The bus bringing me from Douala was scheduled to leave at 9,00 am but in fact left at 11.30 am. The training session on Monday was meant to start at 10.00 am but started half an hour late. Participants, like some bus travellers assume that things will start late.

A young woman was taking her pet monkey for a walk at the Baptist compound yesterday. The monkey seemed to be well cared for.

The frequent power cuts here can be annoying, to say the least. There was sudden darkness several times yesterday evening. Access to the internet is also patchy. Finally the quality of the telephone network is less than ideal, with calls being cut off sometimes, and the sound quality being less than ideal at all times. Local people put up with all of this with few complaints.

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