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Mr. Burrows asks the questions…

Date: 17th March 2024

Mr. Burrows asks the questions…

It’s been one hell of a week in the Early Years delivery in the northeast.

The Dandy Dons Daycare Centre saw Mr. Warnock quit.

That’s not what everybody was told but that appears what might have happened, to the man in charge, Mr. Burrows, for he was there. Though to be fair to him, the conversation where Mr. Warnock announced he was leaving was one filled with strange promises, odd phrases and a bizarre feeling that he, Mr. Burrows, had been conned.

But now, the search is on for the next manager of the Dandy Dons Daycare Centre and a determined Mr. Burrows has had his third Oat Milk, Sugar Free Latte with Chocolate Tops and Extra Sprinkles out the machine and is ready to face the day ahead.

No matter what is on its way, he can see beyond the red seating of the inside of the Dandy Dons Daycare Centre and out into the new and very real world of recruitment.

Mr. Burrows is ready to ask some tough questions…

Picture the scene…

It is March 2024.

The Dandy Dons Daycare Centre looks as it always does – pristine and hidden from the worst of the ravages of the coastline from which, thirty odd miles away, oil is being produced in the North Sea.

Once prosperous, the area is struggling not to end up like a cross between Iceland and Blackpool as the worst of the winter leaves behind rusty rides from a funfair cheek by jowl with huddled masses sheltering from an arctic wind.

But the time is now for the interviewees to put their best feet forward, enter the haven of warmth that is the Dandy Dons Daycare Centre and show that they can become the stability that both the Dandy Dons Daycare Centre and Mr. Burrows needs.

They have gone through managers like paper towels over the recent past so today is suddenly dead important.

Just then his new staff member Mr. Peters arrives with a  sheaf of paper in his hand, negotiates the thigh-high spring-loaded entrance gate, bends his way round the ball pool, gets slithering around the slides and manages to mount the stairs two at a time in a frission of excitement not seen in the Dandy Dons Daycare Centre for some time.

Mr. Burrows can’t help himself from thinking, we shall soon knock that out of him…

It takes no time at all for the door to open and Mr. Peters to appear before him with flushed face and an empty cup looking to be filled with peppermint tea. He bounds to the kettle, opens the cupboard above it, seeks his tea pigs and plonks a tea bag into the cup before turning with a flourish to finally face Mr. Burrows.

“Ready for the day, boss?”

His unbridled enthusiasm is not matched by Mr. Burrows, who up until that time was quite looking forward to the day but now that Mr. Tea Pigs has arrived, he is reminded that Mr. Peters told him hunners of times, tea pigs have less caffeine and is much healthier for you than the muck you drink. Now that Mr. Tea Pigs has arrived Mr. Burrows is feeling that today may be more of a battle than he had first thought it would be. But Mr. Burrows known for his no nonsense attitude and his positivity, and merely smiles and nods.

Mr. Peters, having filled his cup with the requisite boiling water, having let it boil, stand for one minute and then pour allowing him to wait for 4 minutes according to his apple watch timer, before taking the tea bag out and dumping it in a bin, thus allowing him 15 minutes to optimise his drinking time and absorb the contents which shall within 30 minutes and counting and Mr. Peters always likes to count, have a burst of energy the likes of with which caffeine could never compete.

According to Mr. Peters.

And witnessed by everyone else who tends to leave before the 30 minutes waiting time has expired.

Because they cannae stand the bounding teenager that emerges from the gestation of a wee peppermint teabag in a wee Dandy Dons Daycare Centre cup that arrives like a toddler on a diet of blue smarties and Red Bull…

Mr. Burrows reminds himself that no amount of caffeine standard enthusiasm should take him off task.

He needs to be focused.

He needs to stay on point.

He needs to make the decisions today and not Mr. Peters.

He writes that down.

Mr. Burrows writes a lot of things down.

Because writing things down, he was once told, is a commitment for action.

Mr. Peters doesn’t write things down.

Ever.

As Mr. Burrows is about to start the day with a chat about the candidates and what is expected, there is a buzz at his desk. It is the front desk. He looks out the window and can see the ginger hair from here of candidate number one.

This is the guy he thinks can lead the Dandy Dons Daycare Centre out of the doldrums. But a slight form of panic begins to emerge. It means the guy he wants to become the next manager will be in the room when Mr. Peters explodes into his post peppermint routine. How is he going to resolve this? It might put the guy off. Who is he kidding, it will definitely put the guy off…

He makes up his mind and starts a plan of action…

“Mr. Peters,” he begins. “We are going into the boardroom for the first interview. We have instituted a no hot drinks policy in there…”

Mr. Peters, desperate to keep to his routine starts to object, “but I…”

Mr. Burrows cuts him off.

“Last night decision, in the minutes of the standing orders sub committee of the Board meeting at which you were desperately missed but we need to get moving as candidate number one has arrived…Can I help you with your notepad or anything? I am sure we can come back here for candidate number two. This is such a serious decision today, have I said how much I value your opinion on this? I think we are going to make a great team, don’t you? Now that’s right, just leave the cup there. I am  sure nobody is going to steal it. That’s right, so without your hot drink, let’s just wander along the corridor and get to the boardroom and I shall usher the first guy up the stairs, we shall pop them in the boardroom for our wee chat and all shall be fine, and dare I say it, dandy! Oh, I did!”

Unbeknownst to Mr. Peters, he has been manhandled along a corridor and is now sitting in a room with the cabinet full of silverware and the walls dripping with expectation, and without his first tea of the day. Today, he is thinking is going to be a tough one.

Mr. Burrows meanwhile is thinking the same, but he now has the preferred choice making his way to the top of the stairs and emerging from below stairs where he greets him warmly. Part one down, now for part two and convincing Mr. Peters that he is right in his choice.

The rest of the Dandy Dons Daycare Centre team are also thinking the same but the trepidation and fear on half the staff when they saw who came in first, is oblivious to all in the building above the ground floor. But then  again, when did their opinion ever matter…

 

Whilst the author asserts his right to this as an original piece of work there is no evidence that Tea Pigs peppermint tea ever releases that level of energy, Alan Burrows drinks latte or Bernhardt Peters never writes things down, unless you know differently, so, this is clearly a piece of fiction.

The fact is that Aberdeen are on the search for another new manager and between Chief Executive Alan Burrows and the new technical director, Bernhardt Peters, there have been rumours that interviews are being conducted. One of the potential interviewees is Neil Lennon.  In interviews, Burrows has commented ”“The club, working with our partners, have compiled a shortlist with a combination of individuals we have identified that meet the key criteria we have agreed, and individuals that have expressed serious interest in the role. We plan to conduct a number of interviews this week and, in certain cases, seek permission to do so where managers are under contract elsewhere. Our aim is to appoint a first team manager during the upcoming international break. In the meantime, Peter Leven will continue in interim charge, assisted by Scott Anderson and Craig Samson.”


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