Individually, we are one drop. Together, we are an ocean. Ryunosuke Satoro

Dewbien Plummer (she/her)
4 min readJul 11, 2021

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In the last 2/3 weeks since I last posted, a lot has happened. As well as moving house, (🥴 definitely not a side note but not why we are here today), I have been engaging in all sorts of networking activity including;

  • Attended my first in-person conference since the pandemic, the Local Government Strategy Forum 2021. There was a heavy focus on digital transformation and talks from local councils & suppliers sharing their experience.
  • A special mention to Yogita Popat, Head of Organisational Insight & Intelligence, doing some really interesting work building up insight across Barnet council, and upskilling staff en masse using the Apprenticeship Levy. Please also check out Mark Lumley over at Hounslow Council who shared more about the forum (& the great work they are doing in Hounslow), on his week notes here.
  • I spoke on a panel at the National Housing Federation (NHF) Leaseholder and Tenant Service Charges 2021 Virtual Event, along with Aasia Nisar, Head of Resident Engagement at Sovereign Housing Association & Annette Hall from the Health & Safety Executive. The topic was “Getting resident engagement and communication strategies right,” something very timely, as the Draft Building Safety Bill, the main legislation to come off the back of the Grenfell tragedy, was introduced into the House of Commons last week. It was good to hear directly from the Regulator.
Panel at the National Housing Federation (NHF) Leaseholder and Tenant Service Charges 2021 Virtual Event
  • The second virtual panel I attended was for our Housing & Homelessness Strategy 2021–2026, as part of the public consultation on our approach to homelessness and rough sleeping. We had presentations from Officers, the Cabinet Member for Housing Cllr. Anthony Okereke, and partners Beam & Thames Reach. You can learn more about the strategy here. Our 4th and final panel event on “Sustainable, vibrant and resilient neighbourhoods” will be held via Zoom on 13th July 2021, 6pm. Register here to attend.

Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much. Helen Keller

In addition to all of the above, as the digital team grows here at Greenwich, it seems as though every day a wonderful new face appears!

See list below to hear what we are getting up to;

  • Emma H. Senior Delivery Manager; We met for the first time and talked intranet discoveries, AWS & disaster recovery… What’s not to love! 🤗
  • Lingjing Yin. Head of Product. Every week note is a treasure trove, especially on the work we are doing in Housing, but at this point, I’m just there for the cat pics 😻😻 (not really but also kinda)…
  • Phillipa Newis. Head of Delivery, Good Vibes & Useful Tidbits on the internet. Also, training, governance, allyship and creating cultures. I come here for my reading lists, including when it’s time to take a break… You’re welcome.

If I have seen further, it is by standing on the shoulders of giants. Isaac Newton

I say all this to say, that working collaboratively is a game changer in terms of the pace of learning. 🤗

It is also a little overwhelming. 😳

So many possibilities, so much to do, so little time! 🤯

What I’m reading

Masters of Disaster : The Ten Commandments of Damage Control by Christopher Lehane, Mark Fabiani & Bill Guttentag.

I stumbled across this gem after reading an interesting article on how AirBnB spends millions making nightmares go away.

It opens;

IN THE INFORMATION AGE, THERE ARE TWO KINDS OF PEOPLE, TWO KINDS OF INSTITUTIONS, two kinds of organizations: those who have been hit with a crisis and those who haven’t been around very long.

Dun dun duuuuuuun (aka dramatic music)

And it got me thinking, that life in local government is increasingly one crisis after the other. Things like, data breaches, cyber attacks, global pandemics, employee scandal, something inappropriate on social media, or anything that could lead to a crisis, are more a matter of “when?” than “if?”

I also fancy myself as a bit of a real-life Olivia Pope,(a fictional Shona Rhimes character from the TV series Scandal, Olivia Pope is a fixer).

So I read it & it was good.

Imaginary me fixing things in a fabulous coat that I would need a scarf with, & also coffee, because tea doesn’t get the job done.

My takeaways

  • To err is human, so some sort of crisis is inevitable.
  • (therefore) Be prepared, (and if/when something does happen)
  • Your main job is to rebuild trust.

What I’m listening to

The silent football fans returning home… So close.

[Update… well that escalated quickly! 😩]

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Dewbien Plummer (she/her)

Digital Transformation. Social Housing. Black Girl Magic