November was mainly about putting myself back together again after I broke in October. This remains a work in progress to be honest but fingers crossed! I took two full weeks off and stayed off of work email and Slack for the entire time. This really helped and is probably the first time I’ve ever really managed that(!) since Slack was a thing. On the other hand it made catching up this last week really hard – a lot had happened and moved on in those 10 working days.

I did do a couple of things before my break though.

Ann and I spoke at ‘Agile in the City: Bristol‘ about the ways in which agile has become less of a culture and more of a cult and why we needed to change that. It was lovely to spend some time with Ann and the talk seemed to go OK – especially considering we hadn’t been able to focus on it as much as we’d have like to in the run up due to all manner of serious reasons on her side and my meltdown on mine.

I also gave a solo version of the talk at the Bristol ‘Product Tank’ meet-up at the OVO offices which was a lot of fun. I don’t get to attend these events very often which is a shame as it is a great community.

We’ve also just started a new piece of work with our friends in Taunton so I’m helping out with that one day a week which kind of guarantees me weekends in Bristol which is nice.

My decade retrospective post has been popular – it was a slightly weird experience looking back. In my heart I feel like the last 10 years have been a bit of a bust (they definitely have from a personal/social life point of view and not to mention my health) but actually professionally it has been pretty good. I’ve had a lot of bright spots.

I’m pretty determined to re-focus on product and agile leadership over the few years – probably still in the public service space but maybe – just maybe – looking further afield.

I would like to thank all the people who took the time to meet up with me when I was off work. I had catch-ups with Sam, Sarah D, Zak, Sarah P, Tony and Ed. All of these helped get my head straight and in particular chatting to Sarah P got my product synapses firing again.

My happy place is the cinema so I took the opportunity to go and see a bunch (well five) movies. Zombieland 2 (fun but lightweight), Joker (good but overrated), Terminator:Dark Fate (best of a bad bunch since T2), Le Man’66 (surprisingly moving and interesting) and 21 Bridges (not bad but nothing to write home about.) I’ve since also watched The Irishman which is great in places but so very slow. Joe Pesci is amazing in it though.

I also read a LOT of comics.

I am very much looking forward to Christmas.



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