A weeknote, starting Monday 17 April 2023

Paul Moran
3 min readApr 21, 2023
Photo by Saurav Thapa Shrestha on Unsplash

As part of our continued efforts to create a coherent view of our insight landscape, one of my peers and I created space to align the work of our teams and identify how we can combine efforts to have greater impact with service teams. It was time well spent as we identified clear actions which will help us bring clarity in some areas and definitely move us forwards in others.

I was pleased and interested to see the comments coming in from users of the MOT testing service to our blog post about an improvement we’ve made to help reduce data entry errors. Some point to further work we can do to improve this service which is used millions of times a year.

It’s been brilliant to spend some face to face time with my team in the office in Nottingham this week. Over a couple of days we’ve had some great discussions, reflected on how we’ve resolved issues we identified in our last in-person meeting, and did some enjoyable team building through the medium of escape rooms and pizza. One of the activities we’re about to do next as a team is creating a ‘manual of me’, and in coming to medium to write this weeknote I was served with this manual — so thanks

— I enjoyed seeing you speak at SDinGOV last year, nice to get to know you a bit better here :-)

It was good to catch up with the cross-government Heads of Design community again this week on our monthly call, although I could only join for half of it. We’ve identified some high level themes to collaborate on, and we’re intending on making more of what we do visible in the form of a joint monthnote.

I recently read Deep Work by Cal Newport and I’m now going back through it trying to really pull out some actionable insights that I can apply to how I work. Someone I admire greatly once told me how they took notes whilst reading and really reflected on what they’d learned. I could see how it was part of their mastery of their subject and I recognise it now as deep work activity. It also felt aspirational to me as I generally read a lot and try to absorb but I’m often impatient to move onto the next thing and learn more new things. So I’m taking a deeper look and writing out notes from the book to see how this approach embeds key messages and helps me focus on what action I can take to work more deeply in a world where I move frequently between different levels of zoom and different topics numerous times every day. Going to be interesting to see what habits I can build that will help.

A few more interesting things I’ve come across this week:


Exploring Service Design — Collections of books to inspire thinking and action in how services are designed and run