Rumours today that the Royal Mail has lost its second CIO in a year are a lesson to all, that if you attack an organisation from all sides it will fail to attract and retain the top talent it needs to move forwards.
The Royal Mail has been under attack from the inside by inefficient layers of management, a former CIO tells me, and from outside it has continually been attacked by trade unions, political parties, rivals and the lower levels of the media that like to use it as the basis for whinging.
The world the Royal Mail lives in, as with all organisations, is changing rapidly, and to meet the challenges of this new world it needs talented people with a vision for what the organisation and its people could do next. More often than not, a good CIO is central to this much needed talent pool.
It is a mistake to believe the Royal Mail is no longer relevant, it is a central plank to the national infrastructure and to remove it, privatise or devalue it any more than has already been done will leave the national economy much the weaker. Ask anyone who has to use US Postal or the plethora of businesses who have back to back tested the various courier companies and discovered that the Royal Mail is more reliable and more efficient than anything else on offer.
Let's hope that 2011 sees the Royal Mail secure a strong CIO and the sort of backing it really needs.