Tracey's Blog

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Growing the Market in Accessible Tourism

growmat cropped

The launch meeting took place in January in San Sebastián, Spain, for the Erasmus+ project “Growing the Market in Accessible Tourism” (GROWMAT). T2 Consulting will contribute skills in e-learning design, and also quality management, to work collaboratively with project partners in vocational education and stakeholder representation from Belgium, Finland, Greece, Slovenia, Spain, and the UK.

eu erasmus plus

 http://growmat.eu/

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Affordable and manageable ISO 9001 for small businesses

Time lapse star fieldISO 9001 tends to be thought of as the preserve of large companies with teams of quality management people and a matching pot of money to spend on it.  But that's not necessarily the case.  ISO 9001 can be both achievable and manageable for small businesses through group schemes.

I did a short talk about the benefits of this, along with Mandie Bell of Precisely ISO ...

 

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You have to plant seeds for things to grow

Green shoot 400

And, to develop the metaphor further, they don’t spring up overnight.

It is springtime and the sun is shining here in Camberley.  What better theme for my April blog than a springtime analogy? 

Spring is the time we associate with spring-cleaning, fresh starts and new growth. It is a great excuse to dust off your service improvement plans and enthuse your teams for change.  But does it always work like that?  It is tempting to shy away from change for two common beliefs:

 

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IT documentation is a waste of time

LibraryImage400 This is very often a true statement.  If it is anything less than 100% accurate, unambiguous and useful you would be better off spending your time on something else*.

Whether it is process, procedure or work instruction guidance for IT staff or “how to” guides for end users, if IT documentation literally cannot be taken as read it is not worth the paper it is written on.

That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t bother with IT documentation.

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Continual Improvement

Continual ImprovementLet me put a question to you.  If you buy something – a product or a service – which you subsequently decide wasn’t up to your expectations – do you go back to the manufacturer or supplier and give them unsolicited feedback on how to make it better for you?  I don’t, I vote with my feet.  I think it is the supplier’s responsibility to find out how well they are doing.  If they don’t why should I take the trouble to tell them?  It’s their loss after all.

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How do I get the best from people? You only had to ask ...

Getting The Best From PeopleGetting the best from people is an essential part of any job at any level – we all have to get along with our co-workers and work together towards a common aim.  Getting co-operation can seem difficult at times but how successful and enjoyable our job is can depend upon it.  As a manager it can be tempting to assume that your job is to tell people what to do and how to do it, but I don’t think that’s true.  A manager’s job is to be accountable and lead things in the right direction; to ignore the talent of staff and the contribution they can make is almost certainly to incur the wrath and alienation of said talented staff. 

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People management: technical v. non-technical manager

Technical Or Not TechnicalSo following on from my last instalment (it has been a while, I know, sorry), a related question is whether or not a manager needs to have technical knowledge to manage a technical team.  It will probably come as no surprise if I say “yes”, “no” and “it depends”!

Yes

A traditional route to becoming the manager of a technical team is progression from being a technician, perhaps via team leader.

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People management: “Walking the Talk” - Part 2

ExperienceHello, how is it going?  Have you stuck to your resolutions?  I’m trying to.  A box of After Eights and some candy canes to go and it is back to normal.   Meanwhile I am continuing to reflect on what it means to be a manager in my field of IT support.  A divisive question can be whether or not it is necessary to have direct experience of the job that your team members do in order to be an effective manager?   Should you have worked your way up or is it OK to come in from elsewhere?

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People management: "Walking the Talk" - Part 1

Team ExperienceAt the start of a new year it is always good to take stock, reflect on the highs and lows of the previous year and consider how we can improve for the coming year. Here at T2 Consulting I have been thinking about being a manager and how it is one of those jobs that can be seen as a natural progression from team member, but how little attention is given to what that means for the new manager and also their team.

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