My wonderful Mum taught me how to iron a shirt!

Electric iron
Thanks Mum

My wonderful Mum taught me how to iron a shirt. Yes, she bloody well did! Thanks Mum x

She’s no social media goddess, but she’s a bloody good mother, and I’ve learned a lot  from her. Hopefully, you will too!

Stick with me.

“Spencer, these are the ironing basics. We’ll take shirts  first. You will need to iron more of these than any other garment, if you’re going to work in an office. Ironing a shirt correctly is one of the most important things you will ever learn. You’ve got the tools; an iron, ironing board and of course, various shirts”

1. Turn up the collar and iron the underside, never the top.

2. Then iron the yoke (I think that’s what she said).

3. Next the back panel.

4. Turn it around and do both front panels.

5. After that, do the sleeves and cuffs.

There you see, it’s simple! Well, it’s not really is it. Why? Because that’s just the theory!

Theory is brilliant. It enables us to stretch our ideas; from which we create ideals. But then, there is still the job of making them work!

Following Mum’s instructions was fine. She had it off to a tee. I always did, and always do follow her method. I do that with as much care and attention now, as I did when I first learned it.

There are always variables though, dependent on what sort of shirt I’m wearing. Subtleties arise dependent on pleats and creases, style of fit, length, collar, sleeves, material.

The early days were quite rough, what with those double creases down those long sleeves, not quite getting the creases out of thick cotton…and linen, well, it was creased again before you even got the thing on your back!

And now, 20 years and maybe a couple more on, from my Mum teaching me these things, I’ve learned. I’ve learned that you can never be too thorough, too careful, too concerned about what the shirt you wear looks like. The devil is in the detail, always. You aleady have the tools at your disposal, to address issues the at hand. It is simply about using those tools to the best of your ability; with care, with feeling, with a knowledge that the end result is representative of you.

So, in ironing our shirt, or caring what it looks like when we step out into the wider world, takes effort and consideration; without fail, always! If you don’t look for the potential downfalls, improvements in getting to the nooks and crannies, adapting dependent on style, you will never really produce a product of substance. Cock up your ironing and you’ll be noticed far more easily.

Now, with not too much of a leap of faith, apply that to anything your organisation is doing by way of social media!

It’s great that more and more of us are doing it, and doing it increasingly well. Seems we’re all following Mothers recipe, which is good.

However, when applying the method, never be negletful of the attention to detail. Do not dismiss the subtleties of a differently stitched garment, where the pleats or creases fall off centre. You can’t gloss over these too well…they are always noticeable, far more noticable than if you haven’t made the effort to iron them out in the first place.

Implementing social media in local government is not just theory, ideas and ideals. Social media in local government is about hard work, application, effort, commitment, looking for nuances in every new piece and working through them. Without that approach, you’ll produce some social media products, but they won’t be held up to any great esteem.

Along with some brilliant colleagues, we are constantly ironing. Constantly!



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