A blog update from Mr Tom Burgess, former Senior Vice President of Emirates Group IT.
It is sad to witness the Emirates Group’s deterioration accelerating. The knee jerk and badly managed actions which I feared (but hoped would be avoided had Herr Mueller managed to get an early and firm grip on the organisation) are well underway, and probably unstoppable. I am sure that many of you would have seen a video of Herr Mueller’s interview whilst he was CEO at Aer Lingus and been impressed by his genuine understanding of the importance of people in any organisation. I certainly was. I felt that if anyone could turn Emirates around, then he could. But it was a big ask. He probably has the support of over 95% of Emirates’ staff – essential for someone wanting to make wholesale changes – but nobody would have underestimated the challenges presented within the remaining few per cent. When I struggled to get Patrick Naef to see (what I was convinced was) common sense, I often felt that I was ‘pissing into the wind’. Herr Mueller has probably been facing a hurricane over the past six months.
Patrick Naef’s communication (at the end of last month) to EG-IT staff is another example of corporate incompetence and duplicity. He trivialises events by suggesting that they are just part of a review “on the way we work” and avoids revealing the true size of yet another one of his crusades against loyal members of his department. He promises openness, yet proceeds in secrecy – some staff had already been forced out before the note was sent. His communication is so amateurish it would be seen as laughable, if the topic was not so serious. But I guess everyone would have allowed themselves a wry smile at Patrick Naef’s heart-warming promise to those leaving of his “support during the transition”. This is like being introduced, just as you are about to enter theatre for major surgery, to someone who will be on hand at all times to give you “every support” and then discovering that it is the Grim Reaper.
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Mr Tom Burgess, a former Senior Vice President of Emirates Group IT, is writing a blog about Emirates Airline of his own. Mr Tom has a unique perspective on what is going on inside EK management as he was once one of them until they’ve decided to fire all the good, honest and educated managers among themselves.
I am republishing Mr Tom’s posts for a while now. Here is his newest post about Patrick Naef, CIO and Divisional Senior Vice President of Emirates Group IT. This post should give you a perfect picture of one EK high position manager’s profile.
The first day of February 2016 marks the start of a second decade of Patrick Naef’s uncontrolled leadership of IT within the Emirates Group. I assume he will mark the occasion with a few cakes, or similar, to share amongst those who have the misfortune to be close to him. In return he will expect a stream of compliments about what he has done, and how he has done it. The concept of a sycophants’ tea party springs to mind, though I doubt if everyone will find it possible to stoop that low.
Meanwhile the real workers in EG-IT (i.e. those who manage to keep the show going despite the lack of any coherent direction) will have to endure yet another day minimising the effects of continued decay. Perhaps they could find some light relief by completing a little anniversary quiz I have put together? Though I hope the answers will not add too much to the gloom.
- How many months would Patrick Naef survive in a management position in a company that had to adhere to employment laws?
- How many times has Patrick Naef lied?
- How much of Emirates Group’s money has Patrick Naef wasted?
- In his first five years in office, how many air miles did Patrick Naef clock up whilst on duty travel?
- How many times has Patrick Naef reported faults on his IT devices?
- How many people from the UK have resigned from Patrick Naef’s EG-IT, or have been forced to resign, or been fired, or been removed from their role or been demoted? (An individual impacted in more than one category only counts as one.)
- How many times has Patrick Naef been given special treatment by the Emirates Group?
- How long will it take for Gary Chapman to understand the scale of wasted talent in EG-IT resulting from the management culture of bullying and cronyism?
- Has Patrick Naef ever put the needs of an individual in EG-IT above his own?
- How many times was Patrick Naef’s opinion challenged in 2010?
- How many times was Patrick Naef’s opinion challenged in 2011?
- If someone wanted to find out about Patrick Naef by searching the internet, when would they have found the more truthful picture – in 2010 or in 2011?
- How many managers in EG-IT regularly patronise Patrick Naef with praise and compliments, but consistently make disparaging comments about him to others?
- How many managers in EG-IT regularly express praise and admiration about Patrick Naef, both to him and to their colleagues, but subtly undermine him at every opportunity?
I suggest you archive your answers. You can then review them in 2026.
Link to this post: http://updatefromtom.blogspot.rs/2016/01/decayed.html
Link to Mr Tom’s previous post about Patrick Naef’s big IT project and its devastating results: http://updatefromtom.blogspot.rs/2015/12/upper-case-lower-case-or-head-case.html