Boris Johnson’s key adviser Dominic Cummings has called for “weirdos and misfits” to apply for jobs at Downing Street as part of a major shake-up the civil service.
Cummings, credited as the mastermind behind the Tory election win and Brexit campaigns, on Thursday posted a free-wheeling 2,900-word blog outlining how he wants to hire an “unusual set of people with different skills and backgrounds”.
The former Vote Leave director wants officials including “weirdos and misfits with odd skills”, data scientists and policy experts to apply, and urges those who think they fit the bill to use a gmail account rather than an official government email.
Cummings said he hopes to be made “largely redundant” within a year by the recruitment drive.
Underling what he signals is a lack of appropriate talent in Whitehall, he warned he that he currently makes decisions “well outside” his “circle of competence” and there is “some profound problems at the core of how the British state makes decisions”.
Cummings suggests the 80-seat majority the government secured last month means there is “little need to worry about short-term unpopularity”, meaning there is space for his proposed radical change.
Under a subsection on hiring “super-talented weirdos”, he writes that the government needs “some true wild cards, artists, people who never went to university and fought their way out of an appalling hell hole”.
Cummings’ post came after Rachel Wolf, who helped draw up the blueprint of Tory election pledges, said civil servants could be made to take regular exams to prove they are up to their jobs.
Under “seismic” changes being planned by Number 10, she also said that civil servants are “woefully unprepared” for sweeping reforms that Johnson is keen to push through.
This article originally appeared on HuffPost.