Seven: of Nine

This is my ninth blogpost in nine days for #NaBloPoMo. I have another nine already written and scheduled. An additional nine are vaguely planned and sketched out if only in my imagination. I might just do this.

Commuting was even worse Monday and Tuesday. So much so that I have now bitten the bullet and booked hotels for a few nights in Taunton as it was starting to effect my work as well as my general well being.

I spent a good part of this week meeting people from outside the direct team I was working with — people from programme management, customer facing product people, enterprise architecture, market research as well as some people who relatively recently left the organisation. It provided some incredibly interesting context and different perspectives. Many of my immediate ‘hot takes’ have been sufficiently validated that I am now starting to articulate a proposal — as you’d expect I also totally mis-read a few things due to lack of sufficient domain and organisational knowledge — nothing catastrophic though.

I have to be honest it was something of a surprise for the CEO — who endorsed my role — announcing his resignation this week! This doesn’t appear to have been expected and I am watching with interest to see what effect this has on the incredibly ambitious amount of transformation in progress.

Anyway I have now opened up my calendar for anybody across the team(s) who wants a chat to book a slot with me — I want to run my ideas by the widest group possible to take the temperature of the actual people who the would — if accepted— effect day to day.

When not in Taunton I’ve been continuing to work on our proposal for this other project we recently got shortlisted for. That went in yesterday and I genuinely think it is a strong pitch and represents an honest and pretty pure approach to the concept of doing an Alpha — we’ll see how that sits with the (potential) client.

Today I’m working up a deck and a script for the presentation next week — again I am trying something a little different with it. I’m keen not to do cookie cutter stuff now I am this side of the table — I have opinions on how to do certain things well so I am keen not to water them down to fit with the prevailing opinion.

I’ve also been trying to recruit the team — this is a slightly weird dynamic as until confirmed the opportunity is speculative but once it is you want to be able to land the best team possible as fast as possible. It is a local project so I have been leaning on my relationships with some exceptional local talent — a couple of whom don’t usually work in the domain. I found it a bit weird but I have a pretty brilliant group of people now if we are successful.

This morning I had my one-to-one (thanks to from the comfort of my living room) with James and Sacha — the dynamic duo who run our company. Not for the first time I realise how lucky I am to have stumbled into this role, in this business, at this time. There is so much going on, we are really doing well and I find myself in an amazing position to help shape the culture and direction of things from really early. I just need to find a bit of headspace to concentrate on things but I’ll be blogging before the end of this month about what I think a ‘lean DDaT’ consultancy might look like — something open, authentic and driven by delivery as strategy.

I listened to the Stormzy book this week — review coming up at some point about that. Suffice to say it is interesting.

Other than that I have either been blogging or staring blankly into space on various types of public transport when not in work. Next week will be better.

Elsewhere Amanda is totally killing it with her NaBloPoMo stuff — absolutely first class blogging. Go read it you aren’t already.

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