30 March 2023

The only way isn’t up

Delta class

Image: Result CIC DELTA workshop for Civil Servants.
(Please note that Civil Servant Clare Hussey received independent coaching from us similar to that which formed part of our DELTA programme).

This week our guest writer is Clare Hussey who had coaching with us in 2021. 

My line manager recently shared an opportunity with me to go for a civil service role leading equality, diversity and inclusion (EDI) in a department. As someone who values the government's commitment to inclusion through the Public Sector Equality Duty, I was interested in the role. My line manager also championed me applying: the civil service is all about promotions and after a year in my current role, it seemed like a natural progression. However, when I started looking into the details, I realised that maybe it wasn’t that simple. 

Back in 2021, I did some Result CIC coaching, and as part of it I learned about spheres of influence. After having a chat with the vacancy holder about the EDI role and considering the impact that I would like to have, it became clear that the conditions weren’t right for me to actually do what I’d like to do. It might sound counterintuitive, but I realised that I might have more impact with EDI staying where I was doing a role in digital delivery, but also continuing EDI work as part of my voluntary time entitlement as a civil servant. As much as this involves moving slower and juggling my digital and EDI work, I now believe that it’s better to wait and keep building up evidence of success and wait for the right moment.

 There are exciting examples of this happening in government:

Personally, I’ve also had some slow but steady wins in my own work. In 2018, as a fairly new joiner to the civil service, I was diagnosed with dyslexia. As part of this, I discovered that there was a lack of support for people like me, and started presenting about my experiences soon after. From this, I found a network of people that are interested in implementing change, such as the CSDDN (Civil Service Dyslexia and Dyspraxia Network). I’ve also been able to use my experiences in digital - a profession that tackles ambiguity through bringing together a group of people with complementary specialist skills, and giving them the space to learn through doing - to help EDI through these networks. It’s been a slow process of networking and finding allies and funding, but we’ve started to create useful outcomes such as the Managers Toolkit for Dyslexia, Dyspraxia, Dysgraphia, and Dyscalculia

I live in the North East of England, and we have a common phrase: “shy bairns get nowt”, in other words, if you don’t ask, you don’t get. I do have a vision to help the civil service be the diverse place that it aims to be. To do so, we have to make big changes. It will take time, evidence… and being ready for when the conditions are right. 

If you’re interested in helping start the movement, I’d love to have a chat. Contact me via cjhussey@gmail.com

NDA 2015 Power 100 iLM

We are Result CIC, a community interest company. We work with people who feel marginalised or excluded to become more confident about their abilities and to fulfill their potential. We also work with Directors, Managers and CEOs who need support to bring about positive change in terms of diversity and inclusion in their organisations. We each have personal experience of the issues affecting the people we work to support, including disability, immigration, mental health and sexuality. We have also worked in senior positions in industry and government.

Our vision is a society where every individual can achieve their potential, feel fulfilled and make a valuable contribution. 

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