Published in European Trainer - October - December 2017, issue 59
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The important role played by stable staff has always been recognised by the horsemen and women employing them, though perhaps not always shown. It has certainly been overlooked beyond the stableyard, with the apparent view outside of the racing industry that stable work is unskilled and without long-term prospects. This misguided view has been detrimental, discouraging young people outside of the industry to explore job prospects and consider a role with thoroughbreds.
Recognising the individual skillset of the various roles within a working yard is important and while it may take time to get used to new job titles, where for centuries Lad or Lass sufficed, the titles are helping to identify particular roles and logical career progression. Above all, we are learning to openly value our team members and reward their skill and dedication, which means a tremendous amount in terms of job satisfaction and morale.
A wariness of comparing our workplace to any standard business is understandable, but it is important to recognise it as a business and every trainer wants to operate successfully. Peter Burnet, of the Peplow Group, has delivered learning and development programmes for individuals, teams and organisations since 1992. It's interesting to note that many of Peplow's programmes relate to the horseracing industry, “but can be adapted to any sector or organisation.” In this instance, our industry is setting the target for other industries to aspire to. Teamwork is naturally at its strongest in a working yard and can be seen as our industry's greatest, and to date overlooked, asset.
The team at Peplow explain that, “effective teamwork lies at the heart of every well managed organisation. The need to have a common purpose, clear objectives and a will to work cooperatively with colleagues is essential to maximise performance.”