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Skilled Workers, Skilled Citizens: July Update

Can you help design/host events leading up to and including a big SWSC ‘Ceilidh’ in Glasgow in February 2015?

SWSC has established a pattern of regular Reference Group meetings. During our first year, these have been hosted by individual pioneer sites.

This year, we can build on this with events that more actively seek to cross-fertilise learning.

The Fruits of Good Communication (by Jean Byrne)

I attended the Dialogue Community of Practice in Edinburgh on 26th March.  The theme for the day was The Dialogue Community of Practice Blossoms. 

In the morning, the metaphor of the dandelion’s seeds blowing in the wind captured the idea of growth and spreading the word.  I don’t know how you feel, but I know that my understanding and confidence in this approach is growing and I now feel better equipped to consciously incorporate it in my practice.

What impressed me in the quality of the conversations I was privileged to be part of was the depth of the connection between the members of the group.  How wonderful it is to feel connected in that way!  Conversation becomes real, respect is high and we are all valued in the way we wish to be valued.  The ability to challenge ourselves and others becomes easy.  The listening and learning deepen.

This is why Dialogue is so important.  Given the choice between conversations which get ‘stuck’ with people focusing on their own agenda and conversations which are generative and fruitful, with people working well together, most – if not all – of us would choose the latter.

The range of topics that are now the order of the day provide choice for those who are new to Dialogue and those who aren’t.  If you haven’t been to one of the events before, don’t be a stranger!  You can come along and join in the group that looks at what Dialogue is.  Or if you are a ‘frequent flyer’, come and deepen your awareness by looking at Dialogue in relation to teams and systems, health and social care integration, storytelling or emotion.

The next meeting is on Friday 9th May in Stirling.  Make it your springtime resolution to be part of this growing community!

Skilled Workers, Skilled Citizens: November 2013 update

This blog is one of a regular series highlighting key events and developments with the Skilled Workers, Skilled Citizens initiative. Please don’t hold back in offering suggestions, feedback or other comments…

Whilst the focus of October was reaching out to generate widening interest in our work, this month has both continued this work whilst also following up –turning initial curiosity of people who have been told – or independently heard – about the initiative into participation as pioneer sites. It’s been an exciting month of meeting a great number of assets practitioners and strategists who share a commitment to shaping Skilled Workers, Skilled Citizens going forward.

This post attempts to capture and share key points from many of these conversations – but first, a reflection on an event called ‘Writing our Story’ that was hosted by the Permanent Secretary in the Parliament on November 18th

Writing our Story event, November 18th

Community Assets Approaches to Workforce Development

Part of the work of the Skilled Workers, Skilled Citizens initiative is sparking interest at events in our questions about how organisations can take a community assets approach to workforce development. Here’s a story of a workshop we ran at Scottish Leaders Forum event a couple of weeks ago.  

Building momentum: Skilled Workers, Skilled Citizens at the Scottish Leaders Forum 3/4th October 2013

The Scottish Leaders Forum (SLF) is a forum of Chief Executive level leaders from across Scotland’s public services.  About 150 members meet regularly to collaborate on different topics. Skilled Workers, Skilled Citizens began during 2012 as a result of a commitment by members of the SLF to collaborate on community assets approaches to workforce development. One year on, SWSC was invited to run workshops to share where we’ve got to so far with this work – and encourage more public service organisations to join in.

Introducing the Skilled Workers, Skilled Citizens initiative… and an invitation to get involved

The Reference Group for this initiative have asked me to write this blog as a way to capture a story of our work together. The idea is that different voices can add/amend/comment. And we can embed some of the media we are co-producing as a way to share this widely.

For example, this video was taken in late August 2013 with members of East Ayrshire Council’s ‘Vibrant Communities’ team. It shows the kinds of conversations happening at our events (there have been three meetings to date – Edinburgh in February 2013, East Ayrshire in May, and Glasgow (with Threshold and Police Scotland sharing their stories) in June.