Weeknotes 44: New year, new formats

Walking to #oneteamgov on Wed through St James Park

It’s a new year and so I think time to see if there’s learning and benefit to be had from trying out some different weeknote formats. I tried a few when I first started but recently I’ve pretty much stuck to ‘5 things’ format – I like it and it works for me. But, over the next few weeks I’m challenging myself to try all of the suggestions in Sam Villis’s excellent blog post. First up is this one:

  • Good things
  • Learned things
  • Difficulties
  • Achievements

Good things

Lots of good things happened. On Monday we had another building an excellent delivery team session – Nic’s set these up to help the new and growing* team to come together, and to help us focus on where we want to improve our practice. I used the session to review how we’re running our service assessments and get feedback from the delivery managers on the experience. Really interesting range of views – which I’m planning a separate HackIT blog post about, but what stood out for me was a) the honesty and reflection from the team b) getting the balance right in assessments between support and challenge.

Service assessments — liked learned lacked — cluster post its.

On Wednesday I went to the One Team Gov breakfast in Westminster – a great set of discussions (as always), and I’ve started to think about what we’ll need to run the Hackney one on 23rd Jan successfully! I was introduced to the car park theory for teams — it’s really made me think about team shape and space in a different way.

View at Medium.com

I went from breakfast back to Hackney in time for a session with henry lewis and Kirstine, looking at the programme of work around how we can support staff better at Hackney. Together we created a high level roadmap for each product/service – it’s an ambitious programme and was really interesting for me to help facilitate the discussion. We talked a lot about team – how to create a collective sense of purpose when you’ve got a distributed team.

Learned things

I was lucky enough to get useful feedback this week from a range of different people. A couple of bits made me feel sad, but at the same time incredibly grateful. There are some behaviours I wish I was better at and I’m consciously trying to improve on, so whilst it was frustrating to know that I’d got it wrong this time it was equally important that I saw that so I could learn from it.

I read quite a bit this week including this from Jenny Vass which is really good advice to anyone thinking about a new role **

View at Medium.com

I finished Michelle Obama’s autobiography Becoming, a Christmas gift from a friend. Really worth reading — and a fascinating journey.

Difficulties

My personal trello board is still too focussed on to do lists — and I think probably needs a major reorganisation, so that I can see what the next most important thing is to focus on. I’m not sure how to approach it — so I’m still at the thinking stage.

Achievements

I’ve managed to navigate a route to being able to advertise our roles on the Civil Service jobs site as loans, and the new roles went up on Wednesday. A couple of people have already been in touch as a result — this is ace.

I made space on Friday to think about priorities and goals for this quarter, and used Matthew Cain’s objectives and key results template to start mapping it out – I’ve got enough now to show the teams, so that we can have a discussion about what feels ambitiously manageable.

And I managed 2 swims this week – only 48 to go.

https://media.giphy.com/media/hllwtNe9cnAeA/giphy.gif


*we’re recruiting to new posts – http://hackit.org.uk/work-with-us/careers

** I’m not looking for a new role but did I mention we’re recruiting?

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