Jude’s weeknotes — 2 Dec 2022

Jude Webb
3 min readDec 4, 2022

This week I’ve told the team I’m going on secondment to be a Product Manager. Everyone has been lovely and excited for me. It’s been a tough decision to go because I know I’m doing good work in this team and feel so supported by them, but it’s time for me to experiment with putting what I’ve learned into practice with another team.

Statue of Mahatma Gandhi with his hands in prayer pose. Half a brick wall behind it and some hedges to either side. Plague reads: ‘May noble thoughts come to us from all directions” Mahatma Gandhi 1869–1948. Unveiled by Rt Hon The Lord Puttnam CBE. On the 15th October 2004.
“May noble thoughts come to us from all directions”, Mahatma Gandhi, Hull Museum Quarter

What did you experiment with?

I don’t feel like it’s been an experimenting week, more of an organising week. But that might be because I’m writing these notes on Sunday evening and I just can’t remember what I did.

What was hard?

I struggle to map out what service design work needs to be done. If the team moves to a contractor doing the service design rather than a member of staff they’ll need outcomes for the statement of work (SOW), but I find drafting those very difficult to imagine, I think it’s coz when I’m doing it I make it up as I go along.

What did you enjoy?

Supporting people I manage to find what they want to be doing and make space for that to happen.

I shared my storyboard from last week at show and tell and got great feedback, particularly from the leader who was the audience. They said it brought the service to life and would it be possible to share with a minister, and how did I do such great drawings. I obviously confessed the art was openpeeps.com

Conversations with others in the portfolio were useful. Things are coming together well to start to learn from each other and make the things we design better because they are joined up.

We’ve got into a good rhythm as a team for having gaps between the meetings to actually do some of the thinking.

What did you learn?

Planning for Q4, it was reassuring that most of what I put on the list that I think needs to be done matched with the PM’s thinking.

Who did you talk to outside of your organisation?

I’ve spoken to my new team a few times, and trying to work out how I’m going to get paid while working for a different department has been so much harder than it should have been.

They also asked about how I got the role. I started by saying it took me a while to decide to move over, and I needed allies before I was confident I could do the job well. It’s not how I would have answered the question if I’d prepped for it, but it was honest. I need to write up what I’m hoping to achieve and what I’m worried about, so that I can have good reflections from the time I spend learning at the new place.

I had a weekend away to Hull with friends from a previous workplace, it was so good to connect, hear different thoughts and perspectives. Also had time for a haircut and had a wonderful chat with George. I hope we manage to the La caux caves that he mentioned.

What would you have liked to do more of?

We’ve got good at getting problems prioritised (including listening to the operations team) and getting them into the digital team to work ok. But I’m not sure we’re making the time to think about the bigger problems. I’m not sure we’ve got the right team structure or enough people. So it’s a good time to have the questions about what we want to work on for Q4.

What are you looking forward to next week?

I’m going to be going into the office quite a bit so that I can see people and say some goodbyes before I head over to my new role (all being well).

I’m looking forward to working with the team to share how we think we should shape the narrative for assessment and getting their feedback into Q4. Also to hearing more about how our team can work across the portfolio.

What are you reading?

I finished All our yesterdays. I struggled with a lot of it, but enjoyed the last quarter, I got to know the characters a bit and wanted to see how they did.