18 December 2009

Seasonal greetings!

I would like to take this opportunity to offer all readers of this blog my sincere festive greetings and good wishes for 2010. May this forthcoming year and indeed the next decade of this century be healthy, happy and prosperous for you and all those whom you care about.

I do not send out printed cards in order to keep a few more trees in the ground, turning CO2 into oxygen. As part of this I have made a small donation to Adoptaword which is a charity which helps children who struggle to find the words they need to communicate. I ‘adopted’ the word abundant as I aim to help people & organisations tap into their abundant sources of ideas for improvement.

With warm regards & seasonal cheer


16 December 2009

Bus stop displays help with community safety

Bus stops in parts of Essex will be displaying personal safety messages over the festive season

The initiative has been organised by Sergeant Matt Mallett who has worked in partnership Essex Traffic Control at Essex County Council. This is the second time the scheme has run; the pilot ran during the month of April 2009. Sgt Mallett said: “We are constantly looking for innovative and creative ways of getting crime reduction and community safety messages across to people, particularly during the evening and night-time.

Info and full story from http://www.policeoracle.com/news/Essex-Police-Utilise-Digital-Bus-Stop-Signs_20973.html Thank you to them and Essex Police for this bright idea!

Customer Journey Mapping Workshop: the results!

A Customer Journey Mapping workshop was held Stoke-on-Trent City Council on Wednesday 4 November 2009. 12 candidates from various organisations attended the workshop, with delegates from Newcastle Borough Council, East Riding of Yorkshire Council, Derby City Council and Staffordshire Connects among the attendees.

The workshop, delivered by members of Stoke-on-Trent City Council’s Best Practice and Service Review Team, began with a welcome followed by an introduction into Customer Journey Mapping. This included an overview of what it is, how it can help bring ‘customers experiences to life’, what benefits can be realised by using Customer Journey Mapping, and Stoke’s own journey.

Following the introduction, delegates were introduced to Stoke’s Customer Journey Mapping toolkit and taken through a number of scenarios in groups to demonstrate use of the toolkit for data capture. During these exercises, discussion and interaction between delegates for different organisations was encouraged, reinforcing the learning and generating a sharing of ideas and views.

Once the data capture was completed, the group moved on to discuss how this data can be used to identify and deliver service improvements. A brief overview was provided, followed by breakout groups where delegates were encouraged to identify possible improvement initiatives using the data generated within the first part of the workshop.

Discussions continued over a networking lunch and the group left with the understanding of how this approach, as part of a business improvement toolkit, can help provide an important insight of how an organisation deals with its customers, as well as how this can help shape both policy and service delivery.

Comments received from delegates included, “It is a fresh look at Customer Journey Mapping from an authority perspective”, “The course did ‘exactly what it said on the tin’”, “I enjoyed the workshop with all delegates contributing”, “Straight and to the point” and “Practical and based on real scenarios”.

In all, the workshop was a great success, with delegates happy that personal expectations had been met and leaving with the confidence and understanding to implement and use the model. Since the workshop, there has been continued communication between delegates, sharing successes, discussing approaches and signposting colleagues to the toolkit. 

(Thanks to Will Haywood for this information.)

UPDATE 1: It is my understanding that this team has now been disbanded

15 December 2009

Community led sustainability in North Devon

Just spotted this story from North Devon in the village where I went to school and my Father was the headteacher:

A community led development in Bickington has been kickstarted today (Tuesday 15 December) with a major £850k funding boost from Devon County Council. The first phase of this innovative scheme, at Little Bickington Farm in High Bickington, will provide 18 new homes, two workshops for local businesses, a plant room for a woodchip heating plant and other community facilities. Planning consent has also been secured for a new community building and sports facilities, a new primary school, a Multi Use Games Area, a Health Centre and allotments.

Critically in the context of this blog:

David Brown, Chairman of High Bickington Community Property Trust, added “This is a great step forward that will be warmly welcomed by all those members of our community who have recognised and supported the need both for affordable housing for local people and also the other essential community services that will be delivered by the project.

The power of involvement and participation once again....

More information here