Reflections on my week in my world of social value, business need, data driven and digital impact
This week @AlexGreen and @KatyDungworth, the engine room for Golden Marzipan’s marketing and event management both gave us heads up that they would be moving onwards and upwards with their careers.
We of course wish them both well and we thank them profusely for everything they have done. We will miss them both dreadfully, Katy started helping out whilst she was on furlough and managed our Breakfast Briefings and used her graphic design skills to create a visual brand that we are very proud of. Obvious Dad is very proud too #redface
Alex sorted out our befuddled ideas of what was marketing and what was sales, and we now have an impressive infrastructure of website, case studies, testimonials, marketing platform and social media presence organised into a series of campaigns.
The social housing marketing environment is curious place. It features all the usual industry marketplaces with events, conferences, award ceremonies but dominated by familiar sector faces. COVID-19 has disrupted the supplier engagement environment and not just for vendors. Sector agencies such as NHF, CIH and HACT who rely on income from conferences and events have been challenged by free online events.
Golden Marzipan should make no apologies for our “breath of fresh air” Breakfast Briefings.
This week was dominated by award ceremonies!
It was the UK Housing Awards this week. Organised by Ocean Media (Inside Housing) and not to be confused with the Housing Heroes Award, Women in Housing Awards or Housing Digital Innovation Awards.
This one is “the biggest and best awards in the UK housing sector, showcasing the very best the sector has to offer. Free and easy to enter, they attract large numbers of entrants and generate huge exposure for sponsors, with shortlisted organisations getting the chance to pitch their work to leaders from the sector and beyond.”
I saw of few disparaging posts on social media about the cost and the timing. There is an uncomfortable tension in the social housing sector. On development, maintenance and technology, the commercial sector is central and essential to operational delivery. But sponsored events and pictures of celebrations in enclosed spaces brought out the sector fundamentalists.
Our Breakfast Briefing this week was about envisaging your ICT team of the future. Thanks to @StephenThorlby-Coy from Yorkshire Housing and @DavidWing from Wakefield and District Housing. This was one of most fascinating sessions and we covered a lot of ground including T-shaped skills, attracting talent and diversity. We also talked about job families and the modern job titles:
But the roles that attracted the most discussion were about data: data quality, data protection, data analytics. Everyone agreed that the need to invest, attract and retain people with data skills was one of the greatest challenges for social housing ICT leaders.
Well, this is awkward! We’ve been shortlisted for award ourselves.
We are delighted to announce that we’ve been shortlisted at the Housing Digital Innovation Awards for Most Innovative Consultancy. After launching just over 18 months ago, we are delighted to be finalists alongside some big names in the sector.
A big part of this has been the Golden Marzipan Breakfast Briefings, now in their fourth season. They have become a safe space for people to learn and share experiences that help them develop their own capacity for innovation.
And why we do this?
The week ended with notification that we have been selected by another housing association to support the development of their digital strategy. This was great news but an example of the curious nature of the marketplace… we first saw people from this organisation at our Breakfast Briefings in June 2020. Patience!
Dedicated to Alex and Katy. Thank you