I have rewritten this first sentence about 20 times because its hard to express how sad I am be leaving my current team at the same time as expressing my huge pride and delight at the fact I am leaving in order to join Adur and Worthing Councils as Director of communities.
I have admired the work and the approach of the team at Adur and Worthing for a long time. The digital work is fantastic (HT @pdbrewer), the Platforms for our places strategy offers a brilliant vision for change and their ways and working and approach to what they do resonates with my own aspirations around leadership.
It’s also near where I live and this is something that is increasingly important to me – I think communities thrive when people are able to live and work in them. While the commute never made sense I cannot imagine it making any more sense post Covid-19.
Its also an enormously varied role encompassing wellbeing, communities, environmental services and housing – there is a vast amount for me to learn but also a real chance to apply whole system thinking.
My sadness comes from leaving a team that is doing fantastic work and a charity which is so inspiring in its commitment and drive in its mission to beat cancer. I have learned so much over the last couple of years and am very proud of the work we have done while I have been there.
Anyone who reads my stuff knows I have a lot of interests but over the last couple of years I have thinking about focus and how to concentrate my interests more effectively. Its not a coincidence that this new role is far closer to the work and thinking which I outlined at the start of the year and I am look forward to working with new colleagues to look at some of the ideas of democratic innovation that system change affords. I have for a while been thinking hard about where I want to spend my time and energy and this move feels like a huge gift and opportunity to focus on the things which I am currently able only to work on in the margins. I am also very proud to be joining the local government family – a family which is doing such vital and wide-ranging work now more than ever.
Over the next couple of months I will thinking and learning about my new role and brief and starting to get my head around what it means – I will also be working hard with my current team to make sure I leave them in the best place possible.
I called this piece going to and not going from because I have been really happy at CRUK and I am sad to leave; but the role at Adur and Worthing was an irresistible chance to move into the frontline of some of the work and ideas which I am most passionate about – I can’t wait to get started.