Home London News Can these five ideas solve Tube strikes?

Can these five ideas solve Tube strikes?

2nd Sep 15 11:05 am

Here’s what LondonLovesBusiness readers have to say

Next week’s Tube strikes have been called off but the unions are still nowhere close to reaching an agreement with London Underground to stop further Tube strikes.

So how do we solve Tube strikes then? We asked you for your ideas on how to solve it (and, in doing so, discovered there’s a fine line between genius and insanity).

1. Pay drivers by the hour

Jamie Campbell, brand provocator at Elmwood, said: “Pay drivers for the hours they work and not on salary. If they don’t want to work the weekend they don’t have to, if they want more money they can pick up more hours. A little bit of work needed around the logistics. But I think it can work.”


2. Robots

Campbell makes another suggestion: “Or, replace the drivers with webcams and a robotic arm and create a game for gamers that lets them drive a Tube. Obviously it would require creating an online drivers test and stuff but one to consider for the future!”


3. Reduce demand for the Tube

David Godber, group CEO, Elmwood, said: “Solving the Tube strike doesn’t necessarily live in the supply-side solution of dealing with the Tube drivers’ dispute. Perhaps instead it lives in the demand-side of creating enough alternative capacity in the buses, bicycles, taxis and (in particular and incrementally) in lift sharing schemes.”


4. Just ignore strikes

Alisa Murphy, CEO and founder, Life Size Media, said: “How about solving the Tube strike by making sure that it simply doesn’t affect your business. Since we introduced agile working my team can choose to work wherever suits them best. So while other businesses wait for their employees to struggle through hours of traffic we’re busy making magic happen from our sofas, cafés gardens or wherever.”


5. Management should deal fairly with staff

Finn Brennan, ASLEF district organiser covering London Underground, tweeted us: “Management dealing fairly with staff and resolving issues is the only way to resolve Tube strikes.”


Then there are other responses we got that might not solve Tube strikes but are still well worth a read:

Blinfold experienced Tube drivers? Introduce a boar?

Brian Millar, head of strategy at Sense Worldwide had some particular gems. He said: “Tube driving is easy. A machine could do it – and indeed, they do.

“So Tube drivers aren’t recognised for doing something difficult, like pilots, and once they have mastered starting and stopping, there’s little more to the job other than 30 years of turning a lever one way then the other.

“Considered like this, the answer is obvious. Let’s make Tube driving more difficult. Drivers with more than a year’s experience will be blindfolded. With more than five years’ experience, buffers will be removed from the trains so they will have to judge the last station precisely or go off the rails.

“For more than 10 years, they could be blindfolded and have an animal such as a cougar or wild boar introduced into the cab with them. Twenty-year vets will have a cougar, a hornet’s nest and a bottle of gelignite in each pocket.

“25 year vets will have their cab redesigned by whoever designed the Sainsbury’s self-checkout tills.

“This will result in mastery, an increased respect from the public and a swagger in the steps of Tube drivers who will go home knowing they have truly earned their day’s pay.”


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