2020 06 26 — Weeknotes

2.25 — Pride month, even the fish are getting involved…

A warm one this week for sure and signifying the start of summer. For me this is one of the weekends that I should have been away in the campervan but the event was cancelled so have to make do with the delights of sunny Crawley instead… which is lovely of course. (although wet and windy now!)…

We have had a number of conversations this week about the new Council values and how we, in Digital & IT are living those values, or not, and therefore what we need to do differently to change. A couple of weeks ago we asked all Managers in Digital & IT to think about the values and build on the work that we have been doing on our own ways of working, since the staff conference we had in October last year. This week we went over the results of that piece of work and started to develop a bit of a plan to move forwards. It’s really important to me, that the leadership team are part of the thinking to transform our behaviours and ways of working. Lots of things in the pipeline here that I’ll talk about over the next few weeks.

We had another of our Digital Design Authoritys on Wednesday where we are steering the practical implementation of the digital strategy. We had our Assistant Director of Planning and Development talk about the requirements and the need for a new system. To say that there is a need for a new system is an understatement, to say that this has been going on for far too long, also an understatement… Years! We had a great conversation, lots of constructive challenge and ideas and an agreed way forward, which is great. We also did a retrospective on the meetings, as this was the fourth one, I wanted to try and ensure that we had everyone’s thoughts on how they had been going and what we needed to do to improve them moving forwards. A range of really good ideas to progress things…

Not sure whether I have talked about it in the weeknotes, I think I may have done, but this week was the first where we had all three new meetings. I have been a bit obsessed over the past few months around the names of our management teams and I know that names shouldn’t matter but I wanted to signal a fundamental change in the ways we were working so wanted the names of the groups to be an indication of this. The traditional SLT (Senior Leadership Team) and DLT (Departmental Leadership Team) names were really not exciting! Possibly (definitely!) from watching too much of the space station and the Space X launches recently I found myself drawn to the Space X website. A lot of the information on the site was talking about the various missions, not unlike what we are trying to do, well, OK, a bit different but we have a number of emerging missions in digital. So we now have Mission Management, Mission Leadership and Mission Futures — looking at the operational, strategic and future elements of what we are doing!

As part of the Council’s drive to keep the organisation active and healthy during the pandemic, the Public Health team has set a staff challenge called 19 Challenge. Basically a 19 themed opportunity to get teams ‘together’ for staying active and healthy challenges, all for charity. We chose our charity for our colleague who passed away a couple of months ago. Our three challenges were:

  • Do any exercise for 19 minutes every day for a week — walk, run, cycle, tennis — something random and new? (Wearing fancy dress???)
  • Do 19 minutes meditation every day for a week
  • Finish every meal with a piece of fruit for 19 meals.

I have to say I have been hugely impressed with the way that the team have thrown themselves into this. Loads of pictures, loads of the team getting involved, lots of activities and fruit — and even one or two fancy dress outfits!

Tune of the week: Heather Small — Proud https://youtu.be/OygsHbM1UCw

Director of Digital & IT for the London Borough of Hounslow