Hello PPMA members and friends,
It’s been a year since I took up the reins as PPMA President and resident blogger and the year is now coming to a close. For me the year has reinforced all the great things that go on in the public sector. One of the best things about representing PPMA as your President has been the opportunity to speak up for the innovation and added value that goes on across our organisations and to challenge and confront the more negative views expressed that so frustrate us all.
But we should not be complacent. There are times when we need to listen to questions about what we are doing and be open to challenge and other points of view. My theme for the year has been “from insight to action”. Put simply that has been about understanding all that is going on around us, re-thinking and taking informed action. It has been about being self critical, self appraising and developing new mindsets.
It has been a challenging year for us all, and we know there is another challenging year ahead. The public sector is a changing environment, and everything we do is much more under the microscope. And that is right, because the things that are done in public services impact on people’s lives every day. In all that we do, the test should be about what difference it will make to the public and communities our organisations are there to serve.
Our organisations have big responsibilities to fulfil and there is a big role for HR to play in supporting the transformation that is now well underway. Part of that role is to encourage our organisations to themselves be more self appraising and to offer challenge when they are not.
In doing that, it is important that we each pay attention to our own personal resilience. We need to recognise the ambiguity associated with much of the change as well as the range of emotions within ourselves as individuals and across our teams. It’s important to acknowledge the personal impact and spectrum of emotions and to use our support networks, friends and personal relationships to support our resilience.
This is my final blog as PPMA President. On Thursday this week at the PPMA AGM I will be handing on the baton to Martin Rayson. It has been a great honour and a huge privilege to have had the opportunity to serve as your President-thank you!
I have said a number of times this year that HR in the public sector these days is not for the faint hearted and I feel the need to say it one more time! These are testing times for HR, for our members and for PPMA as an Association. The scale and pace of change seems at times relentless. We see colleagues losing their jobs and fearing for their careers, we see deteriorating relationships with trade unions, and we see the impact on morale and engagement of the ongoing public sector bashing. That said, we also see many great examples across the country of HR colleagues rising to the challenge of these issues. One of my favourite things about being PPMA President has been the opportunity to talk to so many different people and to see time and again what great talent and energy there is out there! I am pleased to report that I haven’t met a faint hearted person yet!