The Times: Theresa May exit interview

Just one question: who appointed her? Shouldn’t they take the blame for poor selection techniques? After all, they had known her for many years in another senior role. Perhaps they should be reviewing their selection process …..

“Great, well thank you for coming in for your exit interview, Mrs May. I know you’ve got a few weeks left to work out your notice but I’m sure you’re winding down now and not planning to do anything major.

Oh, you are? You’ve been meeting the president of Russia? Lovely, well, nice to catch up with old friends before moving on . . . And giving speeches on diabetes and housing and tourism and disability in the last week alone? Gosh. Could you have done some of that in the last three years while you were actually still in post?

You do seem to have quite a lot still in your Google Calendar for the next three weeks, too. And accounts have noticed that you’re trying to spend, um, £27 billion, which is a nice idea but should probably be one for your replacement, don’t you think? I’m sure you can appreciate what it’s like to have a predecessor who leaves a great mess behind to sort out.

Thank you for bringing back all of your IT equipment, although I notice that your laptop is a bit broken. The escape button seems to have been pressed rather a lot.

Let’s start with some standard questions from HR. Why are you leaving your job? Oh come on now, don’t cry. It’s a bit late for tears, isn’t it? Let’s try to be a bit more positive. Um . . . who did you get on well with? Your husband, good. Anyone actually in the office? Right, I’m glad he was friendly but he is technically a cat, isn’t he?

I was just looking back at your original application and you said at the time: “I’m Theresa May and I think I’m the best person to be prime minister.” With hindsight, do you think “only” would have been more accurate than “best”?

What did you hope to do with the job? Well, Nick and Fiona aren’t here so you must have some idea? No? None at all. OK we’ll leave that bit blank.

What did you least like about the job? Oh hang on, just slow down. Right, yes, yes, yes, OK, how are we spelling Francois? Shall we just say “every Tory MP” rather than listing them individually?

Could you perhaps tell me about a complex task you completed successfully? Well there must have been something. No, I’m not sure reorganising your cookbooks counts.

Maybe a target you had? OK, bringing down the number of people in Britain, that’s a good one. Although looking at the records the only significant flow of people were those leaving the government. OK, what about the biggest project you worked on? You say you thought you’d solved it but it didn’t work, so what did you do then? You tried it again and it didn’t work? Right and what then? You tried the same thing again, and that didn’t work? Oh dear. And then you were going to try it again before deciding, totally independently, that you were going to resign instead.

Do you have any work to go to? After-dinner speaking? Right. Do you have a backup plan? What about Strictly? They always need someone to get knocked out early with Anton.

And finally, any advice for your replacement? It’s not as easy as you made it look . . . Careful who your chancellor is, they’ll be your next-door neighbour . . . and salt is good for red wine stains. Right, thanks. Great. Good luck.”

Source: The Times (pay wall)

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