Week notes: 6 – 12 May 2024

It's not real, careless feedback, Eurovision on FFW.

Hi there, favourite unique visitor! Hope you’ve been enjoying this sunny spell.

A highlight of my week was a walk over Charing Cross bridge with a glistening Thames and skyline, listening to ItsNotREEAALLLLLLL on repeat. London in the sun is 😍.

Work, work, work

I’ve got Farrah from dxw helping me out for a few days to get things better organised on cross-BFI cybersec work. She’s fab! Helped me make progress on a second update paper for the Board and improved collective visibility of all the actual work the Board update needs to describe. 

I held an investigation meeting (the first of several) for a grievance case – stepping into evidence-gathering mode as dispassionately and compassionately as I can. I’ve done a number of these now (including a spicy one in Croydon) but it’s been a while and this is my first in the BFI. Grateful for quality support from our People Team. 

We had Digital Donut Time (our all-directorate show and tell) and it was so great, with several live demos. Feeling good about the culture we’ve created and the way folks show up to these. It was emotional too, being Margo’s last one. She’s been a big deal around here and will be sorely missed. Next week I’ll meet (and help choose between) candidates for filling her big shoes.  

Now that OKRs are in use by most of my depts, we had a first ever run-through of all the current quarter goals at our leadership meeting. I gave feedback that one batch of OKRs now feels unrealistic and needs rewriting, which got misunderstood as a public dressing-down for non-delivery. Oops. A learning for me to be more careful how/where/when I feed back and more alive to different levels of familiarity with the malleability of OKRs (versus trad top-down targets and deadlines).

It’s not all work, work, work

Good news for my wardrobe, bad news for my credit card: I bought a denim jacket I completely love from Rivet & Hide (a new discovery near BFI HQ) and a teal Paul Smith suit for this Buckingham Palace Garden Party I’m going to next week.

Dylan started his GCSEs!!! Joel started with a new maths tutor. Joy’s WordPress site has a random database problem and tsoHost are struggling to troubleshoot so I might end up building her a new one on my SiteGround hosting.

🔎 Found, interesting 🧐

This LinkedIn post on OKRs and the graphic below are useful. (And the reply from Jeff Gothelf about these KRs being activities not results).

A graphic explaining the Objectives and Key Results model.

NCTs look super interesting as an alternative model that lets people also list the intended activities (thanks Dave for sending me this link). More on NCTs here. I’ve mentioned them before but still not tried them. Tempted.

Capacity planning as a work in progress. Via Emily. There’s gold in here on how to fix excess work-in-progress.

What is designable in organisations? Via PD. Logging this to come back to when I’ve got more time/need.

A talk by Seb Chan, of ACMI which has a tool called The Lens for digitally collecting physical exibits. Seb mentions The Pen, a predecessor at the Smithsonian – which reminds me Russell sent me this link from Aaron Straup Cope about the same. They’re kinda cool but if I’m honest, I don’t really get the user need. (I’m not much of a museum or gallery goer though).

Seven tech priorities for the new government. Much jockeying for shadow cabinet attention.

The 2nd edition of Content Design is imminent. Foreword by me! 

Tom Dolan reckons product teams should talk more about the wrong turns their methods prevent. A good shout. 

An anti-RACI rant on LinkedIn: “it feels like real work because it’s hard, but it’s easier than *actually* getting started. A recipe for stagnation.”

The null process – hmm think we have a lot of these. 

Thoughtful post from Ben about the demise of the performance platform.

Listening, watching, playing, reading, cooking

  • 🎬 The Fall Guy. In a packed house at my local Everyman on bank holiday Monday but nobody was laughing. Still: some fun stunts and metatextual bits. 
  • 🍳 I made a flipping delicious tagine from this low cholesterol recipe book.
  • 📺 Eurovision! Recorded, watched on fast forward, the best way. Finland, Ireland and Estonia were fun. Worthy win for catchy Switzerland. Olly gave great codpiece, but underpowered voice.
  • 🎧 ItsNotREEAALLLLLLLL by Fred Again. Pleasingly discordant. 
  • 🎬 Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 1. Terrible on every level but I quite enjoyed it! Renesme!?! Gonna listen to the HDTGM ep
  • 🍳 These banana oat pancakes were a hit.
  • 📺 Spacey Unmasked. Revelatory, worth watching.
  • 🕹️ Cyberpunk 2077. 36 hours in, and I still get in every car on the wrong side.
  • 🎬 Joker. Showing the kids. I know, I know. Problematic but delectably nasty. 
  • 🎧 A Dream Goes on Forever by Vegyn & John Glacier.
  • 🎧 Dropped by Atoms for Peace (a 2013 Radiohead side project I’m late to!)
  • 🎧📓 Finished Jon Ronson’s The Last Days of August,
  • 🎧📓 Started Fern Brady’s Strong Female Character.


Thanks for stopping by. More of the same next week!

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