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Ski Club of Great Britain Chief Exec resigns

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
ed123 wrote:
the SCGB (as with BASI it seems from other threads) have vanished right up their own back bottom.


You're not wrong there. Some stark parallels - overspending, diminishing business, top-heavy HQs, poor Board oversight, CEO gets blamed (possibly rightly), careless use of words like 'fraud' and 'corrupt' on social media, members left bewildered and minded to leave and many have. I think it's called a death spiral. These are tiny little businesses acting like a FTSE100s. SCGB has a turnover less than one average David Lloyd Club yet according to an ex-Director on another forum it has lost £2.5m over two years and the CEO's package was £200k. £2.5m represents over £100k a month LOSS. Pretty damn impressive, that's nearly the whole building proceeds up the swanny. Another thing I learned recently - Maybe having business meetings at The Ivy, yes the bloody Ivy apparently, rather than Costa or Nero like normal people, wasn't too good for the expenses coffers. The ex-Director says the latest accounts will show a worse performance than the previous disastrous accounts. In my experience you cannot just turn things around into profit so expect slightly better but still bad news a year later.

I'm fascinated to see the Campbell Davies report but that's just rubber-necking a car crash. The 'pulling no punches' aspect of it will entertain but it will also have a negative effect. Maybe it'll take things back to 1903 and start afresh with a modernisation of the same ideals - oh wait, that's called Snowheads isn't it? Laughing

The Club's mistake over the years has been trying to look big and important rather than simply look after members and do it's own thing. It's tiny - a national club that only gets 3% of the skiing population.
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Pruman wrote:
These are tiny little businesses acting like a FTSE100s. SCGB has a turnover less than one average David Lloyd Club yet according to an ex-Director on another forum it has lost £2.5m over two years and the CEO's package was £200k. £2.5m represents over £100k a month LOSS.

IMHO you are bang on in terms of the SCGB trying to act far bigger than it is... with all the overhead and sense of entitlement that entails.

I have no inside information beyond what other members have been, but things may not be quite as bad as portrayed in your cite of the ex-Director.
1. We have no idea what the loss for this latest fiscal year entails. It may include financial losses on whatever remains of its investment portfolio (other organisations would have experienced the same and it just happens that the Club's annual accounts are as at April 30th - near the trough in the markets). Some also would have been the result of COVID-19 - part of the Club is effectively a tour operator and my understanding is that they reimbursed people in full for trips that did not happen. I suspect they were forced to absorb significant costs.
2. A significant portion of the 2019 loss was attributed to a writedown of the carrying value of the investment in the Club's website. I think most would agree that a 20 year old could have been paid a few thousand quid and they would have come up with something better than what the Club had invested in... but that was a recognition of prior lunacy.
3. Per the post from the ex-Director, the CEO's total package was in the order of £200k. That did not mean his annual salary was that amount. We don't know the details, but I suspect that is the total compensation he received during his tenure as CEO (not sure but suspect it was a bit longer than a year) plus a large golden handshake to make him go away. While one would have hoped that under the circumstances the CEO would have agreed to do the right thing and leave quietly with his tail between his legs recognising the colossal mess during his watch, it appears he was not willing to go voluntarily and forcing the exit of a CEO is an expensive... but ultimately less expensive than keeping the wrong person at the helm.

Hopefully the new team can focus on what makes the club special and start living within its means - because it now won't have any choice.
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Levitt wrote:


Hopefully the new team can focus on what makes the club special and start living within its means - because it now won't have any choice.


But the thing that made it special to many members apparently is the thing it can no longer do - free guided social skiing (funded of course from subs).

I suspect it would be better just making itself a TO with pay to play add ons in resort etc and drop the membership fee entirely. That would make it focused on having to earn its money each year through relevantly serving the members rather than having a big pot coming in and finding ways to squander it.

Equally I suspect that any sort of business view would regard that as madness because they don't have confidence in the product being good enough to sell itself and getting off the teat of subs being a risk too far. Which is the attitude which may see ultimately it withering and dying.
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I'm going to add my two penneth to this - as my over-riding impression of dealing with SCGB is that the culture is seriously out of step with what the organisation is there to do. Over 15 years of membership where I have interacted with various employees, I have never felt valued as a member. The culture seems to encourage a lack of customer focused behaviour. I feel frustrated every time I come off the phone. I have not been on any Freshtracks holidays, and it may be a very different situation there, I don't know.

The days are gone where customers can be taken for granted, let alone members of a subscription based organisation. As I have said before, I feel really sad about this. I want to enjoy being a member. I want to feel like it's a club I identify with and want to interact with. I hope the leadership of the club will address culture along with the obvious operational and financial management issues which they will need to address in order to survive.
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Dave of the Marmottes wrote:
....Equally I suspect that any sort of business view would regard that as madness because they don't have confidence in the product being good enough to sell itself ...
I think that they should have made all "executive" remuneration dependent upon actual financial success long ago.

That would prevent the seemingly endless flow of "highly regarded" people with "extensive experience".
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Quote:
lynnecha wrote:
I'm going to add my two penneth to this - as my over-riding impression of dealing with SCGB is that the culture is seriously out of step with what the organisation is there to do. Over 15 years of membership where I have interacted with various employees, I have never felt valued as a member. The culture seems to encourage a lack of customer focused behaviour. I feel frustrated every time I come off the phone. I have not been on any Freshtracks holidays, and it may be a very different situation there, I don't know.

The days are gone where customers can be taken for granted, let alone members of a subscription based organisation. As I have said before, I feel really sad about this. I want to enjoy being a member. I want to feel like it's a club I identify with and want to interact with. I hope the leadership of the club will address culture along with the obvious operational and financial management issues which they will need to address in order to survive.


This rings true for me too, I'm sad to say. I have had many happy days skiing with reps and on Freshtracks holidays and met new friends, for all of which I am very grateful. I once wrote to Head Office expressing interest in serving on Council but received no reply. More recently the Freshtracks team were offering bespoke holidays but over several weeks of being chased failed to deliver what our group wanted. Some Council members also appear to be aloof from the members. I met one this year who was visiting the resort and was ready to be asked how well my Freshtracks holiday was going and what I thought about the crisis facing the SCGB. She just said hello and showed no interest whatsoever. Presumably she and her companion were in the resort with expenses paid. They exuded an air of self-importance, aloof from ordinary members like me. The holiday was excellent but I still feel aggrieved.
ski holidays
 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Perhaps I am advantaged by seeing the prime benefit of the SCGB as the in-resort reps/leaders who have consistently, at least in my experience, been great.
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
I don't have a dog in this fight, but it has been interesting to watch this. All this drama seems just about exactly 180 degrees from why I ski. Expecting humans to behave where money and a bureaucracy exist is, shall I say, hopeful. Seems an easy choice to cut 'em loose.
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@Dave of the Marmottes "But the thing that made it special to many members apparently is the thing it can no longer do - free guided social skiing (funded of course from subs)."

Exactly this. That was the only reason for which I, or any of the people I know, ever took out a membership.
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 Ski the Net with snowHeads
Ski the Net with snowHeads
@Jehu,
Quote:
Presumably she and her companion were in the resort with expenses paid



Well, they weren’t. They were on a trip they’d paid for themselves.
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snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
Thanks for that Gerry. Sorry for the wrong presumption.
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
eblunt wrote:
@Dave of the Marmottes "But the thing that made it special to many members apparently is the thing it can no longer do - free guided social skiing (funded of course from subs)."

Exactly this. That was the only reason for which I, or any of the people I know, ever took out a membership.

It seems that @Dave of the Marmottes has been predicting and advocating for the end pf repping/leading for decades. I believe that with a bit of creativity, it can and will continue to exist in a form that keeps it attractive to members.
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So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
I was a member for many years. I can't even remember now why I initially joined, but I went on to travel on several Freshtracks holidays over the years.

I've never partook in the leading outside of holidays, or really saw the need for it. For me, exploring a resort and reading a piste map is part of the fun. However, as long as it was cost neutral, I wasn't too fussed about it.

What has finally caused me to leave the Club is the response of both the Club and a subset of members to the reality that leading (at least in its old form) had to stop. It seemed to turn the Club into a single issue organisation, with little acceptance from some die-hard fans of leading in its old form that there was more to the Club than that, and that some members might actually like the sound of the new offering.
latest report
 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
Jehu wrote:
Thanks for that Gerry. Sorry for the wrong presumption.


Amazingly there was a staff and Council trip at the end of the 18/19 season though. I’m told it cost 15k. I challenge one of the outgoing Council members over this on Facebook in the run up to the AGM but they refused to even comment. What’s gone on over the last couple of years is unforgivable but people have been shamed and held to account.
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Levitt wrote:
eblunt wrote:
@Dave of the Marmottes "But the thing that made it special to many members apparently is the thing it can no longer do - free guided social skiing (funded of course from subs)."

Exactly this. That was the only reason for which I, or any of the people I know, ever took out a membership.

It seems that @Dave of the Marmottes has been predicting and advocating for the end pf repping/leading for decades. I believe that with a bit of creativity, it can and will continue to exist in a form that keeps it attractive to members.


But it HAS ended. ILG is not really much different from a bunch of pals hiring an instructor and splitting the cost. The other thing is that the majority of members prefer France - ok, some might be persuaded to try Switzerland or Italy but basically France is where they like to go and there is zero chance of leading happening there again, in the way that we remember it, in our lifetimes. By "creativity" you are possibly describing a cute circumnavigation of the law and that won't wash for long.

No, I think its over. The main USP has gone and there isn't currently anything substantive enough to make the subs worthwhile. I know quite a few who remain members because of inertia but now that DDs can be cancelled with a click, even inertia can't be relied on.
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Levitt wrote:
eblunt wrote:
@Dave of the Marmottes "But the thing that made it special to many members apparently is the thing it can no longer do - free guided social skiing (funded of course from subs)."

Exactly this. That was the only reason for which I, or any of the people I know, ever took out a membership.

It seems that @Dave of the Marmottes has been predicting and advocating for the end pf repping/leading for decades. I believe that with a bit of creativity, it can and will continue to exist in a form that keeps it attractive to members.


I haven't been advocating for it but yeah the predicting thing hasn't been that hard ever since TO "guides" were driven off the slopes maybe 20 years or so ago. I have absolutely nothing against the concept of amateur guiding but I do have a bit of a dislike of gravy trains and cliques.

I simply don't see how the club can restore the members' fantasy of "leader guiding" without a huge legal contingency fund. Peer to peer guiding sure but.....
snow conditions
 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Pruman wrote:
Levitt wrote:
eblunt wrote:
@Dave of the Marmottes "But the thing that made it special to many members apparently is the thing it can no longer do - free guided social skiing (funded of course from subs)."

Exactly this. That was the only reason for which I, or any of the people I know, ever took out a membership.

It seems that @Dave of the Marmottes has been predicting and advocating for the end pf repping/leading for decades. I believe that with a bit of creativity, it can and will continue to exist in a form that keeps it attractive to members.


But it HAS ended. ILG is not really much different from a bunch of pals hiring an instructor and splitting the cost. The other thing is that the majority of members prefer France - ok, some might be persuaded to try Switzerland or Italy but basically France is where they like to go and there is zero chance of leading happening there again, in the way that we remember it, in our lifetimes. By "creativity" you are possibly describing a cute circumnavigation of the law and that won't wash for long.

No, I think its over. The main USP has gone and there isn't currently anything substantive enough to make the subs worthwhile. I know quite a few who remain members because of inertia but now that DDs can be cancelled with a click, even inertia can't be relied on.

I agree that ILG is not the same. outside of France, repping is still very much a thing. While France has some fantastic resorts, I find them awfully crowded and am much happier in other countries.
ski holidays
 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Dave of the Marmottes wrote:
Levitt wrote:
eblunt wrote:
@Dave of the Marmottes "But the thing that made it special to many members apparently is the thing it can no longer do - free guided social skiing (funded of course from subs)."

Exactly this. That was the only reason for which I, or any of the people I know, ever took out a membership.

It seems that @Dave of the Marmottes has been predicting and advocating for the end pf repping/leading for decades. I believe that with a bit of creativity, it can and will continue to exist in a form that keeps it attractive to members.


I haven't been advocating for it but yeah the predicting thing hasn't been that hard ever since TO "guides" were driven off the slopes maybe 20 years or so ago. I have absolutely nothing against the concept of amateur guiding but I do have a bit of a dislike of gravy trains and cliques.
...


Jealousy is what you have. The whole repping thing is totally inclusive and non elitist. It is expenses paid in exactly the same way the local ski clubs are but I don’t see you slagging them off.
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I rejoined a few years back as the insurance offer looked good.

Not happy with my membership funding cheap guides for other peoples ski holidays. I wouldn't mind if I was able to benefit too, but SCGB were invisible in Les Arcs last year and Chamonix the year before: I lived in both for the season. Never saw a poster about a meet, never saw a post in local online ski forums, and never saw any group that vaguely looked like them.

It seems to be appallingly run, from the council of amateurs down, and seems to have no relevance to the modern family skier or the under 55's.

£450k on website development? What prat pissed that money away? I wonder if brown envelopes were involved? I can't see any other justification for that level of cost given what the club got for its money.

I was unsure last year whether to rejoin after a particularly rude person in "insurance" made.it very difficult to get additional.cover.

To then find them change the rules during my period of cover is not OK. I won't trust it again.

So the one benefit I and my family got from our membership has gone.

Will I rejoin? Ha ha, no.

SCGB needs someone at the reigns, an individual, not a "council" or "committee", with vision and flair, not someones mate, an ex treasurer, or some puffed up ex corporate director.

It needs to stop being London / home counties / Val d'Isere centric.

If you wanna attract families then have an offer FOR families. Trying to tell them a non-existent guiding service, or off piste holidays, and a crummy mag is a "family offer" is just ridiculous.

SSE affiliation, so the young tigers can race would be a start. Insurance add-on for racing and race training for the young tigers would be another. Family friendly meets on piste for lunch is another. A paid child minding service perhaps. SCGB demo days for kids skis or adult skis. Kit deals.

SCGB is just not relevant any more, a cosy clique from where I sit, so my DD is cancelled.

And before Gerry or other SCGB die hards wade in, read what I have written, that is an ex member opinion right there, someone from the provinces, givng you an insight into how SCGB is now perceived by those who are not long term members.

You could do a lot worse than listen.
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Gerry wrote:


Jealousy is what you have. The whole repping thing is totally inclusive and non elitist. It is expenses paid in exactly the same way the local ski clubs are but I don’t see you slagging them off.


Not at all. It may surprise you but some people are perfectly capable of finding others to ski with on their own or secure enough to enjoy a bit of solo skiing. You really think I couldn't have done a rep course if I wanted to etc?

Rather than attacking others with a perspective and defending the old skool club why not take the feedback from the numerous people who've told you why they are no longer members and doing something positive anout it. Otherwise the SCGB is Kodak......
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You'll need to Register first of course.
ChrisKernow wrote:
I rejoined a few years back as the insurance offer looked good.

Not happy with my membership funding cheap guides for other peoples ski holidays. I wouldn't mind if I was able to benefit too, but SCGB were invisible in Les Arcs last year and Chamonix the year before: I lived in both for the season. Never saw a poster about a meet, never saw a post in local online ski forums, and never saw any group that vaguely looked like them.


I don't disagree with some of what you said, but struggle with this comment around lack of rep visibility in Chamonix. The website was always clear that the rep met in Argentiere in the Office bar (or previously the Rusty) and I never had a problem meeting them when repping was active; in probably 50+ meetings with reps I never recall one not being there. Some of whom were more proactive than others, but the uptake for skiing was always very strong - in the last couple of years they even introduced a family-friendly bring-your-kids-along day just at the right point for my son, who really enjoyed his time as the group mascot. There were plenty of times where the group had to be thinned out/split into "peer-peer" and "Rep led" which, in Cham, tends to be quite easy as there were usually a few semi-locals or two happy to take on a group.

But as for the insurance... I rejoined this year for the full bells and whistles deal because it looked so comprehensive, only for the club to put a statement on its website almost day 1 of COVID basically hanging the entire insured membership out to dry. That's why I won't renew!

It strikes me that it's really become something of a membership discount organisation - it's a bit like REI or MEC in the US/Canada - pay to be a member, get some cheaper stuff, and get the opportunity to go on our holidays (REI, as well as being an outdoor retailer, has a big activities/holidays program). That business model works really well for those companies, but they recognise what they are, and have moved with the times. REI even had to make a fairly member-unfriendly change on its returns policies a few years back in order to stay commercially viable.
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Dave of the Marmottes wrote:
Otherwise the SCGB is Kodak......


I look forward to the revival amongst bearded hipsters in 20 years time Laughing
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
Pruman wrote:
France is where they like to go and there is zero chance of leading happening there again, in the way that we remember it, in our lifetimes.

Not sure about that. I think there is every chance the jurisprudence from the Simon Butler case could mean that a BASI L2 (perhaps with additional L3 European Mountain Safety module) or an L3 could work as a Leader in the same way. It's a long time since I've been a member but I think there are a fair few SCGB leaders who are also BASI L2.

I enjoyed being a tour operator ski guide and it's the kind of thing I would be willing to do in early retirement. I already have an apartment, "expenses" could be a season pass in exchange for a number of weeks guiding as a way of giving something back to the sport.

I left the SCGB because like many others, I didn't feel I was getting anything out of it. The abiding memory of the one and only Fresh Tracks holiday I went on was the cliqueyness of it all and how unwelcome I felt as a newbie. Particularly as Caroline Stuart-Taylor (the CEO at the time) point blank ignored the new people.

I will add however, that I had dinner with Gerry one night (he WAS welcoming to a Fresh Tracks newbie) and although he gets a hard time on here, he's a good bloke. If the rest of SCGB was like him they'd have no problems.
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So Caroline hasn't changed then!
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esaw1 wrote:
So Caroline hasn't changed then!

I was shocked. I work in a high value retail sales industry and we all know it's easier to keep an already loyal customer than it is to attract a new customer or turn someone from a one-off to a repeat customer.

Her attitude was what I would expect of a Corporate CEO but not a Club CEO. I fully expected her to say a quick hello to the people she already knew and then make an effort to introduce herself to the new people, ask them how they're getting on, need any help/info, ask for feedback etc. None of it. Literally went round a lunch table having a conversation with people she knew were long term members and not even making eye contact with the people sat next to them. I had to ask someone who she was. Complete opposite of what I would expect from the head of a recreational club. She could have had me as a member for life and future rep if she'd just said hello. Instead of which I left thinking, "Why would I put money into your pocket next time?" I didn't.
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 snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
snowdave wrote:
ChrisKernow wrote:
I rejoined a few years back as the insurance offer looked good.

Not happy with my membership funding cheap guides for other peoples ski holidays. I wouldn't mind if I was able to benefit too, but SCGB were invisible in Les Arcs last year and Chamonix the year before: I lived in both for the season. Never saw a poster about a meet, never saw a post in local online ski forums, and never saw any group that vaguely looked like them.


I don't disagree with some of what you said, but struggle with this comment around lack of rep visibility in Chamonix. The website was always clear that the rep met in Argentiere in the Office bar (or previously the Rusty) and I never had a problem meeting them when repping was active; in probably 50+ meetings with reps I never recall one not being there. Some of whom were more proactive than others, but the uptake for skiing was always very strong - in the last couple of years they even introduced a family-friendly bring-your-kids-along day just at the right point for my son, who really enjoyed his time as the group mascot. There were plenty of times where the group had to be thinned out/split into "peer-peer" and "Rep led" which, in Cham, tends to be quite easy as there were usually a few semi-locals or two happy to take on a group.

But as for the insurance... I rejoined this year for the full bells and whistles deal because it looked so comprehensive, only for the club to put a statement on its website almost day 1 of COVID basically hanging the entire insured membership out to dry. That's why I won't renew!

It strikes me that it's really become something of a membership discount organisation - it's a bit like REI or MEC in the US/Canada - pay to be a member, get some cheaper stuff, and get the opportunity to go on our holidays (REI, as well as being an outdoor retailer, has a big activities/holidays program). That business model works really well for those companies, but they recognise what they are, and have moved with the times. REI even had to make a fairly member-unfriendly change on its returns policies a few years back in order to stay commercially viable.


But MEC and REI are really more like Go Outdoors in that the member fees are pretty much notional. SCGB isn't a retailer itself - it's more like Quidco in that respect.
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
Discounts are now the only raison d'etre for scgb. A much lower sub, abolish reps, play freshtracks if you can afford the losses but remember tos are real professionals and have the real buying power. And a decent insurance offering more than anything else. Every year there is a thread on best insurance here the scgb should be the go to, be prepared to change broker regularly and possibly offer a wider extent of policy cover, there are some things i am willing to self insure or have a substantially higher excess. Why can MPI according to all comment do so much better? And also in looking at brokers look also at medical condition loading which is where the current scgb policy failed for me by a significant amount compared to the wider market.
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 So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
@countryman, I disagree. discounts have no interest for me as I can shop around elsewhere. For insurance the BMC provides a much better product (certainly for my needs) with a lower subscription cost. For me the only raison d'etre is Freshtracks Holidays, and if I've paid my subs to book one the opportunity to participate in Instructor led Guiding on a separate occasion during the year. I've enjoyed many OP Freshtracks holidays over the years. I've not renewed my subs for a while having chosen to use Snoworks in more recent seasons, but I'm happy to renew my subs if and when I decide to use Freshtracks again. There is no way to justify the high subs cost if I don't plan to ski with the club in a particular season

There do seem to be two groups of members, most of the Freshtracks and ILG clients I've met and enjoyed skiing with over the years have not regularly used the Leader service; I gather from others posting on this thread that many who pre court-case enjoyed the Leader Service have little or no interest in Freshtracks holidays. The holiday reps/leaders on my Freshtracks holidays have been split 2/3 supportive engaging and fun to be with as opposed to 1/3 cliquey and arrogant.

What may persuade me to rejoin SCGB? Well start acting like a proper club for a start. SCGB seems to have resisted peer to peer messaging on its very limited chat section of the website - compare this to Snoworks who encourage peer to peer messaging through its Facebook group. It would be ideal for me to do one Freshtracks holiday in a season with a couple of other trips where I would have a network of contacts of known ability and attitude to safety who I could arrange to ski with off piste on an ad-hoc basis. The previous Leader programme achieved this well, indeed when I used to use the programme in Argentiere I had some great days skiing with the leader, and also other great days skiing independently with people I had got to know on Leader days.
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
What I find interesting about the SCGB threads is that they are the only places that Freshtracks get mentioned as an option for people looking for advice on which organisation to ski with. So, @On the rocks, how does Freshtracks compare with Snoworks in terms of price/product? In other words, does the cost of the subs + the cost of the Freshtracks holiday give better value than Snoworks, Warren Smith, etc?

The comparison with Go Outdoors by @Dave of the Marmottes, is a good example. We used to use them all the time (in the CCC days) as the annual fee was negligible compared to the discounts on offer. Now with the emergence of SportPursuit and other online specialists, the thought of paying them a sub on the off chance we might choose to buy from them in such a competitive market seems ludicrous.
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
The value is similar. Snoworks offers a very high and consistent standard and philosophy of instruction at a limited range of good resorts. Freshtracks offers a greater variety of locations and philosophy of guiding or instruction, sometimes with the risk of not being as good. The choice can be dictated by availability on particular dates or resort preference rather than cost
snow conditions
 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
@On the rocks, Ta
ski holidays
 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
@Gerry, I'm not quite sure why disliking gravy trains equates to "jealousy". And 'losing' 2.5M in a pretty short period of time smacks of a gravy train to me.
ski holidays
 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
@Riccardo, the best comparison from my own experience is the cost of the SCGB La Grave week versus my self-organised trip there at about the same time and staying in the same accommodation. In summary, the SCGB week is a lot more than the cost of accommodation we pay plus the cost of a guide. Now clearly there are a few more expenses to take into account, presumably some element of added value from the Club, and I'm not naive enough to think that Freshtracks shouldn't make a profit. However, there isn't really anything in the Freshtracks offer that would tempt me away from self organising.

OTOH if I didn't have a regular group that I go to La Grave with every year, the SCGB week is pretty competitively priced. The obvious alternative is Skiers Lodge which is a similar price
ski holidays
 You need to Login to know who's really who.
You need to Login to know who's really who.
ChrisKernow wrote:
£450k on website development? What prat pissed that money away? I wonder if brown envelopes were involved? I can't see any other justification for that level of cost given what the club got for its money.
Sadly, as I mentioned before, it's frighteningly easy for an SME to spend this sort of money on Web development, for little or no return in terms of improved user experience, increased revenues and better customer loyalty. Think W1A Perfect Curve. The usual pitch is to point to some flagship clients who are profitable businesses with great websites for whom they've done work, when the business is a success because it's a good business, not a because it has a good website. And with a seasonal business, the proof of the investment may only come the year after the investment is made, by which time your web contractors may no longer even be engaged. There are all sorts of ways to handle these issues, but it takes quite a lot of experience to do so, and SMEs by definition tend not to have it.
snow report
 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
LaForet wrote:
ChrisKernow wrote:
£450k on website development? What prat pissed that money away? I wonder if brown envelopes were involved? I can't see any other justification for that level of cost given what the club got for its money.
Sadly, as I mentioned before, it's frighteningly easy for an SME to spend this sort of money on Web development, for little or no return in terms of improved user experience,


I guess it depends what they wanted to achieve for 450K. It is both a lot and not much money. For installing an off the shelf open source solution with custom templates it is a lot. For anything requirement extensive development and customisation or migrating existing data across, well you can burn through that money very quickly.

It comes down to what is being said above in appearing to be a big operation with only a small budget.
ski holidays
 You'll need to Register first of course.
You'll need to Register first of course.
eblunt wrote:
@Gerry, I'm not quite sure why disliking gravy trains equates to "jealousy". And 'losing' 2.5M in a pretty short period of time smacks of a gravy train to me.


He's too good at skiing to be a member according to his own account. Apparently he saw one Ski Club group that weren't up to his epic standard so decided we were all beneath him. Clearly he dislikes the deal the reps get as he sees it as too generous. No way would he even get on the course let alone pass it based to his attitude towards lesser skilled skiers than himself.

Now I mainly do the Freshtracks holidays that have guides or instructors and I manage to keep myself extremely busy making sure people are having a good time. If people get injured it's down to me to support them. Someone arrives with missing luggage? You have to help them with that and make sure they have kit and can ski the next day. In short, it's hard work but enjoyable.

The losses were due to appalling mismanagement over a relatively short period of time compared to the length of time the Club has been in existence.
snow conditions
 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
....


Last edited by Then you can post your own questions or snow reports... on Mon 8-06-20 22:20; edited 1 time in total
snow conditions
 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
Thanks for confirming why the SCGB won't and can't change
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 You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
Gerry wrote:
eblunt wrote:
@Gerry, I'm not quite sure why disliking gravy trains equates to "jealousy". And 'losing' 2.5M in a pretty short period of time smacks of a gravy train to me.


He's too good at skiing to be a member according to his own account. Apparently he saw one Ski Club group that weren't up to his epic standard so decided we were all beneath him. Clearly he dislikes the deal the reps get as he sees it as too generous. No way would he even get on the course let alone pass it based to his attitude towards lesser skilled skiers than himself.

Now I mainly do the Freshtracks holidays that have guides or instructors and I manage to keep myself extremely busy making sure people are having a good time. If people get injured it's down to me to support them. Someone arrives with missing luggage? You have to help them with that and make sure they have kit and can ski the next day. In short, it's hard work but enjoyable.

The losses were due to appalling mismanagement over a relatively short period of time compared to the length of time the Club has been in existence.


Gerry, are you one of those on the council?

I ask because of you are, then blaming hired employees is a great way to absolve yourself of responsibility.

I've seen it so many times in under performing companies, and non commercial clubs or charities with employees. The "Board" or "trustees" or "council" becomes a stilted body, usually in awe of one or two bluffers, or too afraid to go against the group-think.

The board want the role, and it's usually for an ego reason, so when the chips are down they don't want to do the work necessary.

Another feature is a top level lack of planning for succession, so the same old faces always sit around the table, breeding inertia and fear of change.

And another feature is a top level lack of risk planning, with it often "delegated" to the paid employees.

At the end of the day the Council is responsible for the mismanagement, it appointed the paid employees, said yes to their remuneration packages, and didn't have sufficient controls in place.

Sounds harsh I know, but unless there is significant change from the top down the club is doomed.

And that would be a shame because the concept of a national ski club would seem to have some small merit.
snow report
 Ski the Net with snowHeads
Ski the Net with snowHeads
ChrisKernow wrote:
Gerry wrote:
eblunt wrote:
@Gerry, I'm not quite sure why disliking gravy trains equates to "jealousy". And 'losing' 2.5M in a pretty short period of time smacks of a gravy train to me.


He's too good at skiing to be a member according to his own account. Apparently he saw one Ski Club group that weren't up to his epic standard so decided we were all beneath him. Clearly he dislikes the deal the reps get as he sees it as too generous. No way would he even get on the course let alone pass it based to his attitude towards lesser skilled skiers than himself.

Now I mainly do the Freshtracks holidays that have guides or instructors and I manage to keep myself extremely busy making sure people are having a good time. If people get injured it's down to me to support them. Someone arrives with missing luggage? You have to help them with that and make sure they have kit and can ski the next day. In short, it's hard work but enjoyable.

The losses were due to appalling mismanagement over a relatively short period of time compared to the length of time the Club has been in existence.


Gerry, are you one of those on the council?


Not when this unfolded, no. I joined council in November 19. Last time it was on council we had proper management accounts and stuck to our budgets. I promised the members that I’d kick some back bottoms for this and that’s what I’ve done.
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