Laurie Taylor – 8 June 2017

The official weekly newsletter of the University of Poppleton. Finem respice!

June 8, 2017
Armchairs in library
Source: iStock

Election result: shock victory for traditional values candidate!

As election day dawns, we are pleased to bring you the results of the mock election recently held among Poppleton academic staff. Might these provide a clue to the result of today’s general election?

Listed below are the principal candidates in our election together with their manifesto pledges:

Professor D. W. Tambling

Ban all graduates from the senior common room as they make the coffee queue even longer and grab the only comfortable chairs. 436 votes

Mr Ted Odgers

Strangle the last Vice-Chancellor with the entrails of the last Head of Human Resources. 222 votes

Dr Piercemüller

Bring back the 12-week summer vacation and money to go to conferences and fewer checks on expenses and free biros. 105 votes

Maureen, Departmental Secretary, Media and Cultural Studies

Will someone, anyone, please respond to my last email about the need to have all finals marking completed by yesterday? 45 votes

Dr R. S. I. Pulling

Reinstate mixed biscuits at Faculty Board. 34 votes

Professor Tambling is duly elected.

He described his victory as a sign that academics were fighting back against the systematic erosion of their traditional SCR rights.

(Professor Tambling vigorously denied the allegation from defeated candidates that there had been anything “racist” about his manifesto reference to some graduates as “being on the smelly side”.)

Man on ladder painting

You make me feel brand new!

“It proves that they’re on top of the branding issue at the University of Leicester.”

That was how Christine Hovis, our Deputy Head of Corporate Branding, responded to the recent staff message circulated by Leicester’s Chief Marketing Officer.

Ms Hovis said that the Leicester message deserved praise for its explicit recognition that a brand needed to respond to circumstances:

“Our brand platform has been impacted by changes.”

But that was not all. The letter also recognised the need to respond to such changes:

“Because of this we are refreshing and evolving our brand.”

But this did not mean “refreshing and evolving” for its own sake:

“Refreshing and evolving our brand (will) enable us to re-position our offer and build a more distinctive and memorable brand.”

And what would then happen if Leicester repositioned its offer and built a more distinctive and memorable brand?

“If we build…a brand design element that has stretch and flexibility to accommodate our various business areas and needs – then we can start to build a brand presence that is more reflective of a University on the rise.”

And neither, as the letter made clear, was this mere speculation:

“The External Relations Division conducted significant research to establish the elements we felt we needed to give our brand better presence.”

But neither was it enough to recognise that Leicester’s brand image has been affected by changes and therefore needed to evolve and be refreshed in such a way as to become a more distinctive and memorable brand that could become a brand presence more reflective of a university on the rise. Oh no! What was also critical was allowing others a sight of these brand developments:

“You are invited to a Brand Rollout Session where we will unveil the refreshed brand architecture…that will enable Leicester to build off our heritage but with a keen eye on the future.”

Ms Hovis told The Poppletonian that she could “barely imagine” the excitement among those academics who, stimulated by such an admirably concise brand briefing, would shortly be crowding into Leicester’s brand-new Brand Rollout Session.

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