Maggie Coombes reflects on the changes within Granada as a company

Yes, I think in the sort of mid to late 80s, things started to change, definitely. I mean, for some years before I left, and I left for personal reasons, because we had a child and I wanted to spend more time… but it had really started to change by then. It was quite obvious that things were… that they were letting staff go, and that in some cases, people were being actively encouraged to go. I mean, it suited me to go because, as I said, we had a small child, but there were very good packages on the table to go. But it was quite obvious that it was going to become a freelance industry, and it was a change. I suppose around the time of the contracts being up for renewal, and the whole Sky debacle… it was around that time, I think, that things started to change, and then obviously when Compass, or the Compass people, well, before Compass, but…

We look around us now and the whole world has changed, and I think what happened at Granada was symptomatic of what was happening everywhere – that instead of having management who were genuinely interested in what people did and how they did it, it was all about the bottom line – and it became more and more about profit. I mean, I’m not saying the Bernsteins didn’t want to make a profit, but they were also interested in what people were doing, what programmes were being made, and that definitely changed.

You just felt that people really didn’t care how you got things done, or didn’t want to listen to problems that you might have about the hours that you were asking people to work, or that indeed you yourself were working, because that was the only way to get things done – and that was a huge change, a sea change.

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