Communication, perspective & meeting with Oliver Hope

Home, UK                    Wednesday, 2 July 2014                    4.55pm BST

“The other point of view .. the other view, the other thinking, the other perspective .. how much do we respect or give attention to, is by itself not just a mystery but an education ..” ~ Amitabh Bachchan

This, to me, is where clarity of communication comes in. We can easily make up our minds based on what we perceive rather than fact.

I must say that Internet communications (of which I have been a part of since 1989) does not help much. It is much easier to say things via email, SMS, blog or other online based communication. It seems to me that as we progress through time, most of us prefer this type of communication rather than traditional face-to-face and voice communication, which can lead to misunderstandings.

A case in point is my recent concerns as mentioned in my last few blog posts. My intention was to raise awareness and questions and although I named names (such as Oliver Hope), there was nothing personal behind it… I even mentioned that if it was an oversight on his part then I had brought it to Nominet’s attention.

In any case, the thing I should have done was bring it up with Oliver directly to discuss it, even though I had never met him in the past or had any dealings with him.

Once I was elected to the Nominet Board, I decided I wanted to meet with all the directors individually, so that we could exchange viewpoints and work toward a better Nominet. After all, if I do not know their viewpoint and they do not know mine, then how can we work effectively together? This is not to say that viewpoints and opinions are set in stone or have to match – to me, a good Board will not always agree 100% on everything anyway.

Most importantly is the fact that we are going to be working together and if there were any misunderstandings then these needed to be quelled.

Meeting with the Directors individually is an ongoing process and one of the first ones I contacted was Oliver, and we met at the beginning of June. I am really glad we did.

We got on really well. We were both candid in our discussion, we agreed on some things, disagreed on others, and found there was a mutual respect for each other. We realised that he was advised differently to the advice I was given (by respective third parties) on what to declare and what not to declare re Statement of Interests – something which could easily have come to light if only I had tried to find his contact details and picked up the phone. Hindsight is a wonderful thing.

Since then, I have had joint inductions with him at Nominet, attended a Nominet Board Meeting, and attended other meetings which required Nominet Board members to be present.

I found Oliver to be very open minded, has good experience in the industry and has the “Good of the Internet” in mind, especially when looking at the work he has done within the ICANN community over the years. I believe he will be independent in his role as Non Executive Director on the Nominet Board.

I do hope that readers of my blog will not have got the wrong impression about him from my previous blogs – especially as I was trying to make a point which was not aimed at individuals. However if that did happen, then this is to set the record straight.

I look forward to continue working alongside Oliver Hope on the Nominet Board.