Being able to communicate well is essential for me and I am always thinking about what I can do to improve my communication methods with staff. I have now tried You Tube on two occasions and the feedback has been reasonably good, except some staff still have computers without sound so I still need to do written communication too.
Staff who are trade union members have recently been balloted on whether they would accept changes to the council’s policy on essential car user allowances. To the credit of our staff they have voted to accept the changes, even though it would mean financial loss to some colleagues. This is a measure of staff’s appreciation of the tough financial decisions we, like other public sector organisations, are having to make. I’d like to take this opportunity to say thank you.
I have been asked by the Minister for Education and Skills to join a Recovery Board for Merthyr Tydfil. That council has just received a highly critical inspection report of its education services and as someone who has experienced the recovery process for Denbighshire, I was happy to accept the invitation and provide what help and support I can.
Also last month I’d hosted a regional seminar on the important topic of information sharing between agencies. This involved a large number of people, from different areas of public services coming together to discuss how we can improve the way we share information with each other, particularly in those areas that affect vulnerable people. The same happened in three other regions in Wales and later the hosts from each region met with the Minister for Local Government to learn from each other and take action. This was a really good example of how a small country can mobilise quickly on a clear challenge.
I have not only kept up my cycling to work but I am impressed (I don’t think anyone else is) by the progress I am making. I can now cycle to work in 30 minutes, compared to 45 minutes (first time). I have now set myself a new target: not to be overtaken by another cyclist!