We'll be having an Investors in People assessment in August for part of the department, so spent some time yesterday morning talking to the assessors about work we've been doing on a vision and our objectives for the year, as well as our management development plans.
Then it was my own SRDS interview with my line manager - a chance to sit down and reflect on progress throughout the year, and look forward to the next one. It's also the chance to look at what support I might need and training and development needs. The main thing I need is time - time to network more and to get on with all of the things I do outside of the University including UCISA work, which if you're not careful, tend to get pushed to the end of the priority list. I'm a big of a fan of Steven Covey and his Seven Habits of Highly Effective People. One of the habits is "Sharpen the Saw". He describes this by using the analogy of a woodcutter who is cutting wood. Gradually as the saw blunts he becomes less and less productive. The solution is to stop cutting for a while and sharpen the saw, but he doesn't because he's too busy cutting wood. Some people misunderstand this habit, and think it refers to getting away, maybe having a rest, but that's just putting the saw down - it will still be blunt. It has to be an activity - I do it by meeting someone from outside the department and talking through a few issues with them, or trying to think of a good speaker for a UCISA conference, or reading a good book, or writing this blog!