As August draws to an unseasonally wet and windy end in Kent, I reflect on what’s felt like quite a transitional month in many senses. Since returning our family holiday in early August,

With English children about to return to school after more than five months away from the classroom, the annual cadence that’s familiar to parents with school-aged children is returning. One chapter in our Covid-19 affected year is ending, with another new phase about to begin.

Team Ineos heading the peloton at Lauzerte during Route D’Occitanie 2020

And that sense of change extends to work over the past month too.

Last week marked the retirement of Dominic Deeson from Deeson Publishing – having worked for more than 40 years in content and publications – and the closure of that part of the former Deeson family business.

We were lucky enough to be able to meet up with Dominic and the small publishing team for socially distanced get together to mark the occasion. It was the first time I’ve seen that team since late February and I really enjoyed being able to chat with them all face to face.

I’ve also spent the past month preparing to hand over the remaining aspects of my former role at the Deeson digital agency business, before moving to be Chief Operating Officer at The Panoply in September.

I’ve found the experience of gradually packing up and handing over every aspect of a former job really interesting. It’s helped me move on from a role that occupied my thoughts day and night for many years. I’ve noticed that being able to do this has also given me greater capacity to focus on what’s coming up – starting to think in more detail about priorities and contexts for what I’m doing next.

As I start the new role tomorrow I’m looking forward to working outside my comfort zone once again, continuing to learn new leadership skills in a different context and helping build a different kind of business driving change in the public sector.

Change and uncertainty is certainly going to be a strong theme – the likely second spike in Covid-19 cases and a potential hard Brexit in January 2021 mean that strong contextual awareness, rapid decision-making and organisational agility will be priorities for many this autumn.