3.39 — weeknotes -the importance of staff equality groups

A real mix of stuff going on this week and a week of new things.

Monday started the week in Hounslow House with my management team. Was building on all the work that we have completed over the past couple of months with our face to face sessions — coming to the building with purpose, to a have time together and think about what is going on and what the future brings. We came away from the day having really bought the thinking together, we have a broad plan for 2022, we have thought about the barriers and have plans for moving lots of things along. Lots to do…. We also had a nice lunch in one of the new places to eat in the new High Street Quarter — great redevelopment taking shape in Hounslow.

Tuesday I started on the new Hounslow’s Senior Management programme, it’s a Level 7 Leadership Course, accredited by Institute of Leadership and Management. It is a new and unique programme for the council which is aiming to continue to transform the organisation, the culture and our people. It is headed up by Henry Stewart from Happy (great name for a company), who is listed in the Guru Radar of the ‘Thinkers 50’ list of the most influential business thinkers in the world. The programme draws on the principles of Henry’s international bestseller, ‘The Happy Manifesto’ and is based on what Happy regard as a fundamental truth: staff perform best when they feel good about themselves.

Was a great start to the course which lasts 2 years! So lots of fun ahead of me on this one. I had a headache at the end of it, so it much have been good!

Thursday was the November session of the Hounslow Leadership Group and was another amazing session. It was a session dedicated to the Hounslow Staff Equality Networks. We heard from colleagues setting the strategic approach to our Equality, Diversity and Inclusion framework, how it’s important for both colleagues across the Council and for our communities.

It was inspiring to heard from each of the staff network groups around their work, their challenges and their ambitions for the groups. At Hounslow we have five networks: Black, Asian, Minority Ethnic (BAME), Young People, Women, LGBTQ+ and Disability.

There were some common themes from all. Just how important it was to have a safe space to talk to colleagues, just how proud colleagues were at the work that they have done and how important it is to bring your whole self to work.

There have certainly been times during my career that I haven’t bought my whole self to work and hearing from others on Thursday just reinforces how important it is to do this. It makes you a better person and able to provide better more rounded services. There is also a role that we all have in being an ally for all of the groups — a really inspirational session and lots to talk about moving forwards.

It was also perfect timing , as part of the Digital Festival, colleagues ran a session on Women in Technology. Claire went through some of the history of women in history of technology and their roles, often underplayed (or even ignored) to their male counterparts. It was then awe inspiring hearing from colleagues on their stories and their careers and the importance of maintaining a positive approach.

Ended the week on a positive as well. For what feels like about 623 years we have been trying to connect up our Leisure Centres to the network and installing fibre and wifi to those sites. We have finally got the first site live this week! Finally! What a result. Huge well done to the team!

Half a day on Friday which is lovely but I am ending the week though feeling not hugely on top of all the things that I should have done this week. I know I have said this before but there is so much going on at the moment and the last week of the Digital Festival next week is jam packed!

Tune of the week:

Director of Digital & IT for the London Borough of Hounslow