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21st Century Group HemsMESH Humber MeshWORKS Humberside MESH Network
January-February: Delivered Gravesian-centred staff training sessions for the Garths.
February: Worked with Cathy Byrne on developing Spiral strategies to employ in her application to become headteacher of the new school being formed from the merger of the Danepark and Court Park primary schools in Hull.
Commentary: A ‘graduate’ from the previous Summer’s SD-NLP open workshop programme, the remarkable story of Cathy’s management of the merger is told as a case study in The Parks in the Services pages.
In some circles, there’s a lot of contention about the elitism so often associated with those who claim to think in 2nd Tier – especially TURQUOISE thinking. But I actually do think Cathy does think in TURQUOISE at times. Her fearlessness, her ability to see things clearly from multiple perspectives and to build towards the ‘Big Picture’ would fit with the little we know about this vMEME – and she’s often been way ahead of me in her ability to understand the complexity in a situation!
March-April: In association with David Burnby & Associates, delivered in-house version of An Introduction to Spiral Dynamics & Related Models of Neuro-Linguistic Programming for the Senior Management Team of Hull’s Preston Road New Deal for Communities project.
Commentary: I had inveigled former Common Purpose in Hull director David into coming on my second open workshop programme the previous year. By its conclusion, he was one of the most enthusiastic about the models.
Like myself 3 years earlier, understanding the models gave David a certain release. He had been considering going independent for some time. Now he couldn’t find any reasons left why not to! (And he has been highly successful since as an independent facilitator!)
The Preston Road project was one of the Deputy Prime Minister’s Office prestigious and very high-profile ‘New Deal for Communities’ regeneration schemes. (Both John Prescott and Tony Blair were present at its launch.) With £55M to spend over several years, their brief was the social and economic regeneration of one of Hull’s most deprived areas. However, limited 1st Tier thinking had placed the project headquarters at one end of the estate – and they wondered why they were relatively successful at communicating with people in the ‘tribal areas’ close to them but people in the tribal areas at the other end of the estate hardly ever came to their HQ! (Crossing another ‘tribe’s’ area was – often literally! – a dangerous thing to do.)
Through the Gravesian approach, many of the SMT began to see some of the reasons they were not being as successful as they knew they should be and to formulate some new and more effective strategies.
April-May: Ran Mentoring workshops for Year 8 groups at St Mary’s College.
Commentary: These were the brainchild of St Mary’s teacher Lewis Lynch.
Lewis had been a participant on my first SD-NLP open workshop programme and had assisted on the second. He was part of a team working on developing ‘buddies’ for students in the year below.
It was the first time I had pitched NLP-type concepts explicitly at a group of 13-year- olds – but they all claimed to have enjoyed it and ongoing feedback from Lewis was good.
Gallery: St Mary’s Yr 8 participants, May – click on photo to enlarge. (All photos: Andrea Stephens)
April-May: Working for David Burnby, facilitated the new Humberside Consortium for Learning in putting together their start-up Business Plan.
Commentary: The Consortium for Learning was the result of the merger of the 3 Humber training provider associations – North Lincolnshire, North-East Lincolnshire and Hull & the East Riding – to give them a stronger voice with the Learning & Skills Council Humberside.
Although there were some internal problems earlier on, working with the four directors – Lynn McGowan, Sue Bloomfield, Audrey AllenDawson and Allan Wakefield – was both a challenge and a pleasure. The quality of thinking around their board room table was impressive!
April-May: In association with David Burnby, staged third open programme of An Introduction to Spiral Dynamics & Related Models of Neuro-Linguistic Programming in Hull – this time spread over 2 days.
Gallery: Introduction participants, May – click on photo to enlarge.
July: The Humberside MESH Network celebrated its first anniversary with the biggest turn-out to date at its new home in Centre 88 in Hull.
August: At the behest of Jennifer Crossland, gave a follow-up presentation on the Gravesian approach and Organisation Lifecycle concepts to 2001’s event at the Grimsby Europarc Innovation Circle.
Gallery: Innovation Circle participants, August – click on photo to enlarge. (All photos: Helen M Knights)
August: Met with Hull City Council leader Simone Butterworth to discuss how the MeshWORKS approach could stimulate faster, more sustainable and more holistic social and economic regeneration in the Humber sub-region and in Hull in particular.
Commentary: Simone picked up a lot very quickly – though I think she ‘got’ Neurological Levels more than she got the Gravesian approach. She was interested enough to introduce me to some of her fellow Lib-Dem councillors (including future leader John Robinson) and to consider seriously my offer to be an unpaid advisor to her.
Although Simone did phone me several times over the following year to discuss issues that concerned her, nothing substantial came out of our conversations.
September-October: Delivered Creating a MeshWORK training programme to the Community Investment Team of North Lincolnshire Council. The programme meshed the Gravesian approach, organisation lifecycle concepts and several key NLP models to enable the team to take a MeshWORK approach to its development.
Commentary: Jenny Gavin-Allen had been recruited onto the April-May SD-NLP workshop programme by David Burnby and recognised the importance of the models both to her own team’s working and to their various community groups.
A case study of how the team used the learning to partially restructure their department can be viewed in the Services pages.
Gallery: Community Investment Team participants, July – click on photo to enlarge.
October: Was interviewed about Humber MeshWORKS by Jonathan Parker of Radio Humberside aboard the BBC Bus.
November: As a follow-on to the August meeting with Simone Butterworth, met with Mouchel, the consultants appointed by the Department of Education & Skills to assist Hull City Council’s Directorate of Education improve classroom performance, and introduced them to the Gravesian approach and Neurological Levels.
Commentary: As Mouchel were basically hassled into the meeting by the Education Directorate, responding to pressure from Simone, and allowed only 45 minutes for the meeting, nothing was accomplished other than to make their team aware.
November: Designed and delivered in-house ISO 9001 Auditor Training programme for QSI.
December: Carried out a major piece of counselling & therapy which enabled a woman trapped in a loveless marriage to increase her sense of self-worth until she could leave the relationship behind.