It is terrible to hear that Mr Gary Walker who worked as Chief Executive for United Lincolnshire Hospitals Trust in UK has got into trouble for allegedly using a bit of swearing in some of the meetings.
The truth is that swearing is incredibly common amongs professionals.
For many, many years people have done it without being hounded out of their jobs or dismissed.
In 1999 BMJ published a study where unknown to them, surgeons were observed for use of swear words during operating time.( BMJ Volume 319 18-25 December 1999).
The swear words were classified into three groups, with points assigned to each swear word:
Heaven and Hell Category:
"God", "Bloody Hell", "Bugger" all 1 point
"Shi*t", "P*ss" each 2 points
"FOUR" Letter words:
"F***", "C***" , "B***ard" each 3 points
If a string of swear words was used only the highest scoring word was given the points.
Results: 1 point was scored each 51.4 minutes.
On average 16.5 swear words were used by orthopoedic surgeons within 8 hour shift. General surgeons used 10.6, gynaecologists 10, urologists 3.1.
Ear, Nose and Throat surgeons managed five hours without swearing.
Thus, it can be concluded that swearing is common in professional setting. None of those who swore were subject of disciplinary proceedings.
Mr Garry Walker is special, as he saved the trust from 24.5 million debt. He warned about patient safety and considers himself to be the victim as the result of whistleblowing which led to disciplinary hearing.
We wish him good luck in his Employment Tribunal where he is seeking damages. We hope he would not be judged adversely for being normal.
We hope he will not have religiously biased tribunal.