The Aurora is huge, a giant skyscraper fallen on its side floating in the sea. It reminded me of one of the concepts developed at a Hotel of the Future event we held in Lausanne a few years ago. I must find out what the staff to guest ratio is but there are staff everywhere (and the majority are Indian)

Amusing opening keynote by Michael Portillo. *A game of two halves* refers to his life before and after his *most humiliating moment* of losing his seat in 1997.I like his basic theme that most people will catastrophically fail at some point yet life still continues and often life is richer as a result (*never trust anyone who has always been successful*!!) Great anecdotes about his Dad and his uncles fighting against each other in the Spanish civil war leading to his father becoming a refugee in England and his time spent with Margerat Thatcher – especially the moment he saw in her eyes that she realised she made a mistake on the day she resigned (he suggested that had she spoken to all the ministers personally the would have supported her – the fact that she didn’t was her *arogant* mistake

Left Southampton and awoke to sunrise coming in through window – N49.4299 W2.4994 – Saint Peter Port, Guernsey in the distance – an unexpected observation: even in the flat sees this huge ship still rocks.

Excellent keynote by Tim Collins (Rules of Engagement: A Life in Conflict) if sometimes a little frightening when you realise what he has done in his career to date (i found myself wanting to ask him what it was really like to go into an SAS mission in Sierra Leone… it looked so far removed from this Irish guy in a suit telling jokes on stage)

I liked his description of the 6 characteristics defined by Templar (responsible for British acitivity in Malaysia in the 1950’s) that he used when he returned to lead the Royal Irish Regiment after his time in the SAS.

1. prioritise – you have to understand what it is that you are expected to deliver – nice example of Templar camping outside Churchills office until he was told what to do…

2. organisation – what are the roles required to achieve the mission

3. people – excellent descritpion of how the German commander Von Hammerschmidt (sp?) placed his staff in terms of whether they were bright or stupid and lazy or industrious. The bright and lazy are ideal candidates for the leadership (have the ideas but are too lazy to implement it so they are good at delegating), the stupid and lazy are the ideal workers (they just want to be told what to do so that they can then eat and sleep) and the bright and industrious are good as staff sergeants (the middle management who are capable of translating the message between top and bottom and are hardworking enough to go and speak to everyone and make it happen). You have to be careful of the stupid and industrious since they can often cause havoc in any organisation…

4. spirit

5. instructions on daily basis – keep feeding back on progress towards priority

6. let them get on with it.

John Perry, SCALA – how to achieve an energy efficient supply chain

20-25% of delivery vehicles on the roads are run empty (even given the increase in back haul traffic)

KM travelled per pallet – exponential curve showing upto 13km for primary / secondary BUT upto 50km for tertiary (ie the local delivery) the implications here are that local delivery may not be as efficient in terms of number of miles driven (hence increased carbon footprint) according to current practice

We ran two workshops both went well – hoping to post data (along with all research to date) on an external site soon.

In relation to Collins talk, overheard and useful: outcome – the objective that we desire – strategy is the plan for what you will do (in your control) to achieve the outcome.

Amongst others, also met Jonathon Clark (marketing for friends reunited), Sally Uren (Forum for the Future), Chris Arnold (DMA), David Magliano (headed up Londons pitch for the 2012 Olympics), Rob Smith (Go mad thinking), Mark Allat (Conservative way forward), Justin Suter and Matt Hobbs (IBM global consulting) and Richard Wilding (Cranfield)