Milder weather, National Pet Day, catching the last light on wild evening walks and meeting current-future talent!

Wild weather, fishing on the beach and Flash the Whippet

What have I been doing?

A highlight of the week was meeting the Digital Data and Technology (DDaT) Fast Streamers. These are talented, resilient, inspiring, motivated individuals who rotate around Depts, anywhere in the UK, and across the many DDaT roles gaining lots of experience before moving into their first roles. They held a conference on New/Emerging Tech and invited me to speak. The agenda was jam packed with clever people and so instead of shiny toys and whizzy things (which I can also happily natter about), I talked about the User and how important it was to consider their needs, trends, and the application to DDaT. I found the prep really interesting and I just wish I could have met them in person. They asked a zillion really clever and insightful questions and know they will be acting as great DDaT ambassadors in all their roles.

It’s half term so a few of my direct reports have been off taking well earned rest. Secretly its a delight as I can dip a bit closer to the teams and catch ups with them, getting to know them even more, hopefully helping (!) and adding a different perspective. There is lots of crunchy stuff going on and my role is to help all those spinning plates align.

I was able to spend time with our Product teams of Government as a Platform and the Clinically Extremely Vulnerable People Service on their future FY roadmaps chatting through what they want, what they need, what blockers they envisage. Watch this space, it looks exciting! (And I know they will want to share them widely in the open.)

We published our Pause and Stop list across the directorate so it was open and clear. We will build on learnings from this and routinely reflect and adjust as a team to focus on things that matter.

I spent some time with MOD peers, private sector peers, mentees, then spent time on things with AI, things on enabling teams to more easily find new ways to attract talent, things on planing money, things on spending money, things on COVID data (data not dates), time listening to individuals and teams and a really fun all directorate huddle which I always get lost in the show & tells in and have to remember that I need to focus for my tiny bit at the end.

Then I drank cocktails. :)

What am I thinking?

Well my DBA assignment is submitted (whoop!) so we are only….. 2/3 closer to finish line ;) Really enjoying it and I just hope and wish I could add more value to the community, faster, from it.

I’m thinking about people, about the Digital Leaders conference I am helping to shape. It is looking rocking and very strong speakers. Sign up, its free! Sadly not enough speaking slots for all who we had lined up.. so more next time, sharing, networking and growing. Boom.

Thinking about my team, some find weekends hard, some find weekdays hard. We are all different and I’m grateful for the pockets of time when I, individuals, and teams feel good. The light is at the end of the tunnel, the light is coming into mornings and evenings and it feels like birds are singing just a little bit more.

I caught up with more friends and enjoying absorbing a bit of their lives and I listened to Lt Cdr Pete Reed OBE talking about resilience. Pete’s story is inspiring with many equivalents and through it all he looks ahead, and up.

Picture with characteristics of Resilient People

To finish, in another world, my nearly 98 year old gran, Betty (my user persona extra-ordinaire) is spending her Sunday playing monopoly in a games cafe in Wellington, New Zealand. This photo makes me very happy.

Grandma Betty smiling, its sunny, its COVID free. Life is good :)

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