It has been a week of deep thought for me thanks to my training last Friday with the CPD people here at Staffordshire University. I am taking a Post Grad Cert in Leadership and Management which has some real ties to the work I am doing with Enable. Especially thinking about strategic intent, understanding in very basic terms where the University wants to go, going down to where each department wants to go and how we are all going to get there. Along with this is aligning the strategies across departments, and how they will be implemented. There appears to be a patchy approach to strategic management, and this becomes reflected in the work being done by projects, or initiatives. Serious thought needs to go into how we manage new requests for initiatives, understanding not just how they fit in with the now, (and being very reactive), but how they need to be able to fit with the past and the future. We can’t have too narrow or too broad an approach. Typical examples include:
- Where staff have not got clear direction into why they are doing a particular initiative, and the requirements for it
- Where it has been driven by a hobbyist for a particular software to meet one or two needs of different individuals with differing needs
I am seeing examples of this when talking to people within the university, not only for Enable but in general day to day work. Is there a realistic way that these can be managed? I’m not sure. These types of projects seem to appear in two diametric conditions, either they are ground root initiatives or they are driven from the very top.