We won an award this week :)

James Reeves in his piece sets a challenge based on the three questions posed by Jonathan Slater, our Perm Sec.

“What was hard? What was fun? What made you proud?”


A wise person was once asked about how you can bring people together to deliver a successful outcome. Their response was you had to chose, you can either have alignment or you can have delivery.

Their point being that we all only have so much energy. Bringing people together and keeping them focused on a target, resolving conflict and priorities, leading that team. All of this takes energy which is finite and which has to come from the same pot needed for delivery…

It is a zero sum game, one of my favourite metaphors is leadership as water bucket. We arrive at work with a bucket of energy, every thing we do either drains the bucket or fills it. Alignment drains the bucket, delivery drains the bucket.

And we end up drained…

So what is the answer?


When we delivered Apprenticeships we decided from the start that the only way to tackle the question was to refuse to play the game.

We agreed to work on the basis that alignment and delivery were one and the same thing. We agreed that building the team and building the product were what we were here to deliver.

And that is what we did.

It was and is profoundly countercultural in a bureaucracy to define success in that way.

But it worked. And it works. It was hard but it was and is fun.


And that is what OneTeamGov is all about. Balancing alignment and delivery by making them the same thing.

I am proud to be contributing to that change.

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