Warwick Network 07: Turning Strategy into Action

Follow-up to It’s Not What You Know… from Casey’s Blog

Where are we so far?

We have a date and a gameplan (approved by Senior Officers). We have
some support promised in terms of organising the day and I have just
been to SODA (Senior Officers and Departmental Administrators) to check that we are heading in the right direction with the new and improved Warwick Network.

See What did SODA think?

For those of you that need a recap:

In summer 2006 the Registrar held the first Warwick Network, a one-day conference giving ALC
staff the opportunity to hear from senior management, including the new
Vice-Chancellor and the Registrar, and to think through the issues
facing the University in the next academic year.

(Often people naturally concentrate on the precise remit of their
specific roles without thinking about the impact on bigger objectives
and how their role fits with someone else’s.)

Underpinning the whole day was the concept of reinvigorating and rehabilitating ‘The Warwick Way’.

The first Warwick Network received excellent feedback from delegates and a series of potential improvements were suggested:

  1. Involve all staff groups (particularly academic and ‘clerical’)
  2. Hold the next event outside of the school holidays
  3. Give people early input into workshop topics
  4. Give clear guidance to staff managers on staff attendance

The University has just completed Warwick’s Future – a major staff
and student engagement exercise, inviting all University members to
suggest goals and activities which could support Warwick in achieving
its core aim of becoming one of the world’s top 50 universities by 2015.

Every proposal was evaluated by a comprehensive dual-tiered process.
Some of the ideas have been incorporated within the draft University
Strategy but many smaller, but nonetheless valuable, ideas were
proposed and have been catalogued.

The discussion sessions at the Warwick Network provide a valuable
opportunity for smaller good ideas, which require cross-departmental
co-operation, to be thought through and developed.

Approximately one-third of the breakout sessions should be based on
Warwick’s Future Ideas, the other two-thirds should be (i) skills
development (ii) exchange of best practice.

At least one of the plenary sessions will be used to present,
explain and discuss the new University Strategy – this will be jointly
fronted by the Vice-Chancellor and the Registrar.

Another plenary session will be led by a well-known external speaker
on the topic of turning strategy into action e.g. Lenny Henry, Digby
Jones.

Warwick Network ‘07 should be a full-day event in mid-September with morning and afternoon plenary and breakout sessions.

This event will be one element in a comprehensive internal
communications plan designed to support the launch and implementation
of the new strategy.

It is envisaged that the strategy will be launched in July and that the Warwick Network will:

  1. Provide a launch event for anyone absent in July (through the plenaries)
  2. Give people the opportunity to start engaging in turning strategy into action.

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