Oxfam’s boss goes undercover for a TV eye-opener

Mark Goldring

Mark Goldring

First published in News

OXFAM’S chief executive Mark Goldring will appear on tonight’s Channel 4 programme Undercover Boss, posing as a new volunteer.

He spent a week in April being followed by camera crews, while wearing a long-haired wig and glasses, travelling across the UK and the Philippines to spy on the Cowley-based charity’s staff.

He said: “I worked with people in the shops and on the streets – a lorry driver who collects all of the clothes from donation banks, and then workers in the Philippines who are helping people recover from Typhoon Haiyan that hit in November. I saw an amazing range of staff who were so passionate and work so hard to get every pound possible for Oxfam.”

But it wasn’t all fun. Mr Goldring said: “It was very challenging out in the Philippines, especially when we were treating sewage from schools which had damaged plumbing.”

He said that Oxfam is set to benefit from the programme, adding: “When I was out on the street trying to get people to sign up to our donation service, they don’t like to give lots of personal details, so I’m looking at creating a system where they can just text without us having to get too much other information.”

Undercover Boss screens tonight at 9pm on Channel 4.

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Comments (3)

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9:44am Tue 22 Jul 14

Andrew:Oxford says...

The "undercover boss" genre of programming can be quite fun to watch, in particular the odd occasion when the boss is outed, but one thing makes me very uncomfortable...

The "character" that the boss becomes is almost always "rough and dim". Is this really how media organisations and directorate of these charities & companies see their potential employees and supporters?
The "undercover boss" genre of programming can be quite fun to watch, in particular the odd occasion when the boss is outed, but one thing makes me very uncomfortable... The "character" that the boss becomes is almost always "rough and dim". Is this really how media organisations and directorate of these charities & companies see their potential employees and supporters? Andrew:Oxford
  • Score: 5

11:30am Tue 22 Jul 14

Marco00 says...

Stopped giving to Oxfam years ago, when I saw the VERY PLUSH state of their (then) HQ in Summertown. I would rather give to local, more accountable, local charities. Sorry to say it, but charity begins at home
Stopped giving to Oxfam years ago, when I saw the VERY PLUSH state of their (then) HQ in Summertown. I would rather give to local, more accountable, local charities. Sorry to say it, but charity begins at home Marco00
  • Score: 3

1:47pm Tue 22 Jul 14

ashleyc says...

Andrew:Oxford wrote:
The "undercover boss" genre of programming can be quite fun to watch, in particular the odd occasion when the boss is outed, but one thing makes me very uncomfortable... The "character" that the boss becomes is almost always "rough and dim". Is this really how media organisations and directorate of these charities & companies see their potential employees and supporters?
I don't know, I think you may be overthinking it. It's probably just them doing a bad job at pretending not to be themselves (and not being used to people looking up to them) rather than anything malicious. If a new starter employee is acting like Mr Chumley-Warner people would probably get suspicious.
[quote][p][bold]Andrew:Oxford[/bold] wrote: The "undercover boss" genre of programming can be quite fun to watch, in particular the odd occasion when the boss is outed, but one thing makes me very uncomfortable... The "character" that the boss becomes is almost always "rough and dim". Is this really how media organisations and directorate of these charities & companies see their potential employees and supporters?[/p][/quote]I don't know, I think you may be overthinking it. It's probably just them doing a bad job at pretending not to be themselves (and not being used to people looking up to them) rather than anything malicious. If a new starter employee is acting like Mr Chumley-Warner people would probably get suspicious. ashleyc
  • Score: 0

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