The second four-day week this month as I took Friday off. It felt like a productive four days, and I don’t have too many loose ends to come back to when I return.
This was a week in which I:
- Had my mid-year review with my line manager. A really useful discussion which helped me to understand and articulate where I am work-wise right now.
- Got a piece of work completed that had been in progress for much longer than I had hoped, providing a learning syllabus for our IT staff.
- Agreed a strategy for our compliance recorded lines solution, and met with the Group technology owner to clarify our requirements.
- Met one of our telephony providers to discuss their proposal for Teams Direct Routing as a Service. The less technology that we need to own and run ourselves, the better.
- Agreed the communication strategy for rolling out Azure Information Protection to our organisation, and reviewed the email introducing staff to the topic. Hopefully it will be focused on what they will experience in terms of ‘speed bumps’ more than the theory behind the ‘why’.
- Reviewed a draft training course on Information Risk that is due to be sent to all of our staff.
- Had a number of meetings for our big group programme, including a couple focused around the financial business case for the work. The part of the company that I work for has a very different approach to costs than the rest of the Group, so we agreed to follow up with the business case template owners to go into this in detail. Separately we agreed to proceed with a proof-of-concept for one of the system modules.
- Met with the technical members of the IT management team to assess our requirements for an architectural capability and what form it should take.
- Aligned with a colleague on a data and analytics project that we are running and shared all fo the information I had on the business case for the work.
- Joined and left a webinar in the space of five minutes as it didn’t seem a good use of time. I’m quite comfortable with dropping off if the platform is mostly one-way and there is little chance of the presenter seeing me go and thinking that I’m being rude.
- Had to rush to pick up my son after he called to say he had come off his bike, hitting a tree and smashing his hand. We’re so lucky to have a wonderful friend a few doors away from our house who works as a paediatric matron at a local hospital, and my son took himself off to see her for a quick triage. We ended up going to hospital to have his hand assessed; fortunately nothing is broken, but three of his fingers are very bruised.
- Took delivery of a new tumble dryer, after our last one seemed to continuously default to a ‘third degree burns’ setting. It lasted over a decade and it’s amazing to see how the technology has changed; our new one is a ‘heat pump’ design which reuses the heat inside of the machine instead of pushing it out into the room.
- Had my wife’s parents to stay with us for a couple of nights for the first time in two years or so. It was lovely to have them there, and felt like another step in getting back to normal. (My fingers are crossed and my breath is held, but UK infection rate seems to be ticking up again.)
- Spent most of Friday driving to Clitheroe, a four-hour drive which turned into a seven-hour mission including a stop for lunch. We’re here for a short break, handing our own house over to my brother-in-law for their own break from their usual surroundings.
- Had a day in Clitheroe itself, exploring the town and the (extremely tiny) castle.
- Headed up to Malham for one of the most beautiful countryside walks I have ever been on. I know that the UK has a lot to offer, but I forget how stunning it is until I see it again.
Next week: More exploring in Lancashire and Yorkshire, and some friends come to join us on holiday.