Weeknotes S4 Eps 12

Emotional sponge

An emotional sponge(bob)

Overarching feeling of the week

Another week and another big brown question mark hangs over proceedings.

I can tell that it’s left a few of my team feeling discombobulated but I can also see that people are being cautiously hopeful that change and disruption might bring about something positive, thats good.

Again, I’ve done a lot of listening this week and people have rightly wanted to talk. I’ve had to be careful not to soak everything up too much because I can be a bit of an emotional sponge and can find these things very distracting.

Sometimes, when you do have a tendency to soak up other people’s feelings, it can be hard to see the wood for the trees.

Wood for the trees.

What I mean is, when there’s a lot of discussion and opinion it can be hard to rise above all the details and to see the bigger picture, or to concentrate on just the facts rather than conjecture. But I’ve been trying really hard to practice that this week.

It’s been tiring. Anyway, onwards.

I’ve been around the office more this week which has felt needed, and I finally sorted out all my holiday, which is a relief. I can’t quite get my head around it being August already, but still. Oh, and Wednesday was an awesome day.

Five things that happened (actually less than five things but it is Friday and I am tired…)

ONE. New starts. This week was Hattie’s last week and on Thursday we all went out for drinks to celebrate her moving off to a new start. I’ve only known Hattie since March but she’s been such a valuable member of our team so it feels like a real loss, I can’t wait to see what she does next.

Also she’s become a friend and I’m so lucky to be able to say that.

A sad baby

A new Digital Engagement Manager (DEM) joined our team and I will be managing her which is exciting. I can’t wait to get started. She is bright and enthusiastic and I hope I can help her to thrive.

TWO. One Team Gov Breakfast club. I’ve been thinking a lot about how we use weeknotes and how they can help us to reflect and grow, so, following a conversation at One Team Gov breakfast club in Westminster this week, I thought I’d record a little vlog about reframing, and how it has helped me.

If you’re interested in seeing reframing in action then you could do worse than to download and try Koko. Explanation below:

One other thing that came up at breakfast club was that people couldn’t believe that I find the time to write weeknotes, and I later discussed this with Dan over coffee. When you have a toddler and you can’t go out on a Friday night there is time. But more than that, weeknotes have now become so useful to me that I make time wherever possible.

Three. Intranets. Fellow weeknoter Lizzi was over at GDS to visit the empathy lab so I gave her a quick tour of GDS towers and we chatted for half an hour which was lovely but could have been much longer.

We talked about intranets generally and how they are almost always problematic, seen as just another channel to send corporate messages which employees don’t engage with. Her team are doing a lot to encourage teams to blog and to work “in the open” in the organisation, which was brilliant. I really enjoyed the chat and I hope she found it useful too. Lizzi’s weeknotes are found here.

Four. Seeds. Prompted by my mentor sending me some questions I’ve been (predominantly procrastinating about putting my thoughts down on paper, but) thinking about how I go about defining my strengths, and what I want to try and achieve. Also about what I’ve done in the intervening time since our last meeting.

I’m getting better at understanding this but this practice is still fraught with imposter-y-ness, I need to work out how to get better at this. I wrote something in here about what I’m good and terrible at but it feels really self-indulgent (especially as this weeknote already includes a video of my face) so I’m leaving it out for now.

Self-indulgent tripe.

In other news…

There are now 27 blogs in the #OneTeamGovGlobal blog of blogs which is amazing…

This article about how social media affects employees is really interesting and does make sense to me:

I went out for dinner with Morgan and Jenny on Wednesday night and one thing we all agreed on is how lucky it is that we’ve become friends. I’ve known Morgan only since January and she has become invaluable keeping me on track and helping us all to be more empathy-driven, I really admire this about her. I’ve known Jenny for longer, though One Team Gov has brought us closer together, and I love her boundless energy and enthusiasm.

I’m so grateful to have these brilliant women around me, and on that note:

The GDS Introvert Network have written some guidance on running inclusive meeting’s and it’s great. Here’s the direct link as the embed may not work: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1zeYrgXL0jvqY1F22pDkUiPcFVmdTVShgIzd8Mt6XPAA/preview#heading=h.q38g26g5ojy9


I went to a great session run by Janet Hughes at DfE on Monday about how to run a Discovery for any project (not just digital ones) it was really useful and the outcomes are already being published, looking forward to see how this plays out.

I’ve been watching Bob Mortimer and Paul Whitehouse’s programme about fishing and honestly, that sounds like rubbish, but I can’t express how charming it is and how much you need it in your life.

And finally, here’s my playlist:


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