Whatever sector and level you identify yourself with (public, social, voluntary, community, social enterprise, voluntary, NGO or business sectors), it is a given that leaders, managers, employees, service users and customers are facing the fastest pace of change in their lifetimes, with only two certainties ahead - still more uncertainty, and more change.
Being a charity trustee in the current political and economic environment does not always feel comfortable. There are many reasons for this. Large or small, local or national - charities are facing common problems of reduced income and, if they are charities concerned with social issues, often increased demand for their services
I do find it both incredible and alarming how often senior public sector managers, executives (and indeed managers and executives in the business and charity sectors too) and politicians fail to recognise the critical importance of their staff towards the fulfilment of their ambitions and delivering desired outcomes.
The floods have exposed the gossamer thin argument for austerity and the cold, cruel ideology that underlies it. The inescapable truth is that we all rely on properly funded and resourced public services - maybe not directly every minute of every day but, nonetheless, all the time, because the alternative means abandoning people when they most need our help.
The Head of Ofsted, Sir Michael Wilshaw, said on 22nd January that parents and families should take more responsibility for their own lives. It's a view I share. 4Children's own Family Commission told us that families, even very vulnerable families, want to be seen as part of the solution, not part of the problem.
Last week I was invited to give evidence to the House of Commons Public Administration Select Committee (PASC) for its enquiry on citizens and public services. This is an important enquiry and has the opportunity to address some fundamental questions about the nature of our public services, and the Government's 'reform' and public expenditure programmes.