Will Carruthers: I’ve learnt that… uncertainty is a feature of public services
Since I joined MV, as a company we’ve constantly been waiting for certainty. But, rather unhelpfully, the last two and a half years have been among the most uncertain in British political history.
First, there was Brexit. “Let’s just wait until Brexit is done,” we thought. “We’ll have more certainty then.” Months and months of parliamentary wrangling followed, and we still don’t really know what Brexit means for us.
Then came the election, and the prospect of the ‘taps being turned on’ for public services, or, at the very least, five years of relatively consistent government policy to allow for longer term business planning.
What no one predicted was COVID.
This constant flux and uncertainty made me reflect on my own work over the past 2.5 years. Through working on the programme to establish a new Children’s Trust, I’ve been constantly told ”you would never do it this way”, when referring to the double whammy of setting up a Children’s Trust, and the process of Local Government Reorganisation aimed at establishing two new Unitary authorities for the area. Add in the dissolution of the council’s shared service provider and a period of considerable economic uncertainty for the region, and you have a perfect storm of hugely complex change programmes happening at almost exactly the same time.
Public services, and those who work within them, need to be adaptable, resilient and have strong foundations and strategies to weather the inevitable uncertainty – that is what it takes to work in public services in 2021.
To learn more about our work supporting children’s trust contact Will firstname.lastname@example.org.
To view more of the reflections from the Mutual Ventures’ team click here.
Download a report containing the full MV team’s personal reflections on what they have learnt over the last decade.