A year of work in progress – day 175

Day 175 – 15 October 2014

Today was always going to be a long one. Several months ago we agreed to a Dynamo awards dinner and today it has arrived. It seemed so far away at the time. It is called Dynamites 14 and is to be held at the Newcastle Civic Centre in the banqueting suite. By the time this goes out I will be on my way to the event to join my colleagues from the North East ICT Managers. We took a table to be part of the event but also in case we win something. It’s a black tie so I’ve had to dig out my monkey suit as we need to make an impression for the press. I got it from ASDA’s (I’m a class act) for an event when I was at North Tyneside and haven’t worn it since then (I must get out more).

We didn’t win a prize that night and so I hope it is not a portent. I’ll reveal all tomorrow.

This morning started with a meeting of the Senior Project Leads and the Project Leads in the chamber at County Hall. The odd thing about the council chambers is that they are not good for meetings. It was a follow up to the work we did from the Institute of Customer Services’ ServCheck results. I also wanted to talk about the restructure and I ended up talking for an hour about Customer Services Week, Northumberland and Accommodation as well as the issues carried over from the last session. The primary question that we need to address is ‘At work, do I have the opportunity to do what I do best every day?’ to which the answer last month was a resounding no.

We broke up into two groups and agreed the three things we are going to start to address: How do we know what people are good at? How do we share that information? What does good mean or look like? We’ll come back to these at the next meeting.

After this it was back up to Morpeth for a Senior Leadership Team meeting at the other County Hall. This time it wasn’t in the chamber. The first part of the meeting was given over to a session on mentoring. This is something that the SPLs have asked for and we agreed an approach. Dawn is going to give the SLT some training early in November before we give it a try.

Finally we met to get an update on the joint work between the two authorities. The board is meeting in Friday and we’ve got some good stuff to tell.

Learning points for today: A drone can cause a riot; you should take your coins out of your pocket when presenting; Dunbar’s number is the number of people you can have a meaningful and reciprocal relationship (it is about 150) and; you should read emails before responding.

Today’s enjoyment rating 8/10 – a roller coaster day with some stressed out bits.

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