July 12, 2017 : Sally Dyson

Celebrating digital leaders

During #DLweek, SCVO digital connected with charity senior leaders to celebrate and inspire digital change. Catch up with the key elements of the day via Sally's special recipe for success.

Recipe ingredients

3 x Digital Leaders

1 x Inspiring Venue:
https://www.gorgiecityfarm.org.uk

1 x Presentation from Lifelink Glasgow

1 x Presentation from Art in Healthcare

1 x Refreshments

15 x Keen Beans

1 x Huggin’ of Post It Notes (or similar)

1 x Bag of Sharpies

Method
Prepare by making everyone feel welcome with great refreshments, an inspiring environment and friendly, insightful opening chat to make sure everyone is on the same page

Add Presentation 1 and Q&A from Lifelink Glasgow

Add a pinch of time to take in the enormity of the achievements in their digital journey (and what they still want to achieve) then grab a cuppa – mix/network

Fold in Presentation 2 and Q & A from Art in Healthcare

Add measure of time for reflection and comparison between the two different stories

Select key themes to discuss (in this case Strategy Implementation, Social Media, Networks and Tools and Apps) then crumble into small groups (with more refreshments)

Bake – get down to the hard work of analysing challenges, how we overcome them and what works in different situations

Serves
The perfect mix of celebration, inspiration and re-assurance that the group were part of a change movement; a range of new contacts and relationships; two hours of time well invested and an appetite for more!

Conclusion (or cook’s notes) …
Okay, it’s not quite as easy as suggested above. We are, after all, working with people, not culinary ingredients, so the change process leans more towards art than science. However, the following key themes did emerge:

Leadership is Critical
· Be bold, set the general direction and give clarity – this is about people first, not digital first

· Give space for curiosity, innovation and experimentation – bite off more than you can chew, and then just a little bit more

· Get support from others, ideally one or two Trustees from your own organisation (it’s ok not to know all the answers)

· Develop a network of like-minded people and support each other

Beneficiaries / Service Users / Customers
· Put them at the heart of all the changes you’re making

· Don’t make assumptions about where people are at and how they ‘might’ like to receive support. Ask them, involve them

Workforce
· Create a network of supported colleagues – they will bring peers along with them

· Training must sit alongside the change process, with a discussion and review process in place giving people ownership and leadership

· Time devoted to encourage creativity and the boldness that you bring

· Test and learn different approaches – there are lots of resources already out there, don’t reinvent the wheel

Environment
· Be open and talk about what you’re doing

· Create space and time for experimentation, and encourage and reward a learning environment – nothing is failure, it’s all learning

Tech, data and processes
· Use the free resources that are out there and focus on data driven changes (with the addition of expert analysis)

· Look for scalable, flexible solutions and be agile in a way that works for you

To explore these issues further and support Charity Chief Executives and Senior Leaders on their digital journeys the next Digital Leadership Programme will be opening in autumn. To make sure that you don’t miss out on this, or any other opportunities follow us on twitter @digiscot or sign up to our e:bulletin.

Important: Opinions expressed by bloggers are their own and don't represent those of the Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations.

by Sally Dyson