Thursday, 29 March 2012
Manchester and the Transition Institute's first spin-out camp
Today saw the first of the Transition Institute spin-out camps that I chair. Hosted by Hempsons in its very comfortable Manchester solicitors' offices, we had a great day. Delegates were from local authorities, the voluntary sector, the cooperative movement and thought leaders in the field of new service provision. The purpose of the camp was to speak with delegates to give them knowledge and inspiration and to hear about their challenges and aspirations. We also wanted to make connections between the players in this fledgling market and vitally get detailed feedback on our latest research piece Commissioning and procurement with social value.
We were welcomed by Andrew Burnell, CEO of City Health Care Partnership, who quite rightly conveyed his sense of achievement in that 84% of his staff identified with the aims of the new organisation only ten months after its inception and, since it began trading in 2010, customer satisfaction in the service had risen 7% taking them into the high 90s. Andrew wondered if 100% satisfaction was possible and felt it was certainly something to aim for. If the feedback forms were anything to go by, he did a great job in convincing people that spinning out can achieve new standards in patient care and staff satisfaction.
We heard from Justine Andrew, Business Development Director at KPMG, who had a really clever fish-like graph that showed successful tenders are secured in the work you do before the tender is procured, in relationship building and getting to understand the customer needs. She explained the importance of giving your plans and claims the "so what?" test, and showed us her nine-point plan to spinning out, which I liked because it was not until step 8 that she recommended adopting a governance structure.
We then had Dan Gregory from Common Capital who did an hilarious presentation reporting his work on the analysis of innovation. His best illustration of vacuous innovation was a film called Live from The CenTre, which I have loaded in the video section here on the blog. It is well worth a look if you want a laugh and makes Dan's point well, which is: by all means innovate but not for its own sake. I particularly liked the hand-digging funeral directors and the social media for inanimate objects advocate.
Then Ian Hempseed, a partner at Hempsons, gave delegates some great advice about the legalities of spinning out. He had loads of questions to answer and offered some great practical information.
Finally the delegates broke into groups and gave us some thought-provoking and challenging feedback on our research sharing their perspective which we will be including into the research and drafting up before the next spin-out camp on 24 May in Leeds – contact the Transition Institute for details. I liked the question about social value: was it an issue for commissioners or consumers? After all do patients ever ask for increased social value? It's a good point, we need to think about that.