Week notes 15–19th May

Holly Davis
4 min readMay 21, 2023

This week has felt quite frantic, there’s lots going on and plenty more lined up for next week. It’s self-review time, there’s a half-day management training course lined up for tomorrow, a full day in London for a new project kick-off, and a new member of the delivery team joining. As well as my first coaching session with Alison 😅

Despite feeling like I’ve been chasing my tail, I’m enjoying the pace and variety

  1. This week was Mental Health Awareness Week and Torchbox had organised social enterprise the Zen Bus to visit the office to offer some optional meditation, breathwork, and sound healing sessions https://twitter.com/ProjectDavis/status/1658540549039685632. I really enjoyed starting the week by slowing down
  2. This week, a colleague and I delivered a short introduction to Agile for the sales and marketing team. We tailored the normal introduction to agile for new starters and tried to integrate some of the learning objectives the team shared at the start of the meeting. I wish we’d sought some of that information in advance — focusing less on the theory and more on the application, we showed some examples of roadmaps, backlogs, and user story maps but I felt like we could have done more by telling a better story if we had more time. Some good learnings though and I think a general review of the overall training might be in order
Some fun memes from the icebreaker

3. With Torchbox being employee-owned, we have a regular co-owner forum meeting. There are currently four trustees as well as a board made up of the two co-founders and CEO. After some conversations with other employee-owned organisations, they’ve decided to establish a Co-owner advisory board to increase representation and the voice of the employee. The initial trial is six months. Although I’m not sure I’d want to be a trustee in the future, the thought of being able to input and have a voice in the direction of the company interests me so I’ve put my name down. I don’t feel enough people know me to vote for me but there’s no harm and it sounds like there will be plenty more opportunities to get involved in the future if now’s not the right time.

4. I had several interesting conversations about the delivery framework, it’s been great to see so many people engaging in this and lots of great thinking happening. My main challenge now is to try and bring that all together so people can collaborate on it across disciplines. I was particularly interested to see some work a UX designer I had worked closely with on my first Torchbox project. He presented a flowmapp he’d been working on to visualise the UX/design process. He commented about how working with me had been different in that he was used to “management determining what he did” but maybe that’s not the best thing and that he should take more ownership. Another person I manage, commented in a 1:1 “I love how you don’t fill the silence, it helps me get to the solution on my own” — it’s good to hear that my working style is organically starting to have an impact.

5. With a new starter joining next week, I’ve been reviewing the induction training. It made me reflect on how much I’ve done in the last 5 months and will my probation period is just three weeks away, I now feel like I know enough to be able to onboard another new starter — only a month or two ago I’d have felt daunted with that responsibility but now I’m excited. I spent time refreshing the induction template, removing things I felt to be less important and as well as adding in things I’ve picked up that weren’t so obvious, all of which I hope will make the onboarding process easier for future new starters.

After a lovely weekend which included a very enjoyable Torchbox paid trip to Gifford Circus in Blenheim Palace, I’m feeling ready for another busy and positive week.