No petting, no overtaking

My memory of going to the swimming baths is punctuated with a small number of things, the sting of chlorine in your nose, the sense of cold when you first enter the water, how sticky your clothes were when you put them on again, the taste of hot chocolate from a plastic cup to recover … Continue reading No petting, no overtaking

Gently reminiscing

There is a film crew and a load of extras outside of County Hall.  They are filming for the TV series George Gently which has been set in and around Durham over the last ten years.  There are some old vehicles, an ambulance, a Bedford van and a black Transit with Tyneside Office Stationers written … Continue reading Gently reminiscing

Unfolding plans 166 – War and Peace

I’m not sure if I remember this correctly as it is a long time since I’ve read War and Peace.  I’ve always loved the way that the Russian classics were written and whilst it is a long book, (my version was in three separate books) it is well worth a read.  I think I have … Continue reading Unfolding plans 166 – War and Peace

Unfolding plans 152 – taking stock

Friday is always a good day to take stock.  Today is day five of National Customer Service Week and so it’s a great opportunity to think about what has happened.  It was not just ICT Services that got involved. Social Care Direct, Transport, First Contact, Customer Services (of course), Neighbourhood Services, Highways, Regeneration and Economic … Continue reading Unfolding plans 152 – taking stock

Unfolding plans 151 – Employee engagement and culture

This week is flying by.  It’s day four of National customer Service Week already.  I’m still wearing my Institute of Customer Service badge (with pride) even though I’ve changed jackets since yesterday.  Today’s theme is employee engagement and culture which is perfect as we’re having our second day of our Lean Start-Up training.  The group … Continue reading Unfolding plans 151 – Employee engagement and culture

Unfolding plans 140 – be mindful of others

A couple of days ago I was telling you about Lee and his stories.  His tale of children and coasts tugged on a few strings.  It brought back memories of childhood, happiness, helplessness and an innocence lost.  It gets me every time I hear it (and I’ve heard it a few times now!). He has … Continue reading Unfolding plans 140 – be mindful of others

Unfolding plans 122 – Writing a cheque

Yesterday I cashed a cheque.  It was for a very small amount, less than seven pounds.  The day before I happened to write a cheque.  This time it was for a larger amount.  It had a seven in it.  I’m letting you know about this because they are such rare events these days.  I can … Continue reading Unfolding plans 122 – Writing a cheque

Unfolding plans 114- granularity

We used to play a game, my colleagues and I.  It was in a different place from where I am now and we were much younger then.  The nature of the game was to take a new piece of jargon and use it over and over again until it became part of the vernacular, until … Continue reading Unfolding plans 114- granularity

Unfolding plans 102 – Why do you want to talk like Ted?

I've come to enjoy presentations. You and I know that I do enough of them. Lately it seems to have been the main topic of my conversations, which is apt. I’ve been trying hard to improve my technique and practiced much harder than I used to.  I’m trying to hold conversations rather than stick to … Continue reading Unfolding plans 102 – Why do you want to talk like Ted?

Unfolding plans 101 – Take your opportunities when you can

It is a truth universally acknowledged, that the best place to buy a postcard is not the Post Office.  You may find that odd.  I know that I did.  Where else would you go for all things postal?  Well you would be wrong.  The vast majority of post offices don’t sell postcards unless you want … Continue reading Unfolding plans 101 – Take your opportunities when you can