Professional development day and AGM

Find out more about the region's Professional Update event and the Annual General Meeting

Professional update day

About 40 delegates gathered at the Rivergreen Centre in Durham City in the afternoon of Thursday 16 March for CIPFA in the North East's professional update event - 'Grow Your Professional Development'.

Martin Cresswell, Chief Executive of iMPOWER, kicked off with a first session on demand management - how much demand for public services is avoidable? The public's behaviour can either increase or reduce the effectiveness of public spending. But organisations can influence public behaviour by tools such as Nudge factors. All budget lines are in scope for savings – but must first be viewed through a 'demand opportunity' lens.

Gavin Barker of Mazars discussed commercialisation as alternative models of service delivery. The drive for commercialisation in local government was a response to austerity. He noted that the public sector already has many of the commercial skills required to deliver change and efficiency.

After a coffee break, Ian Railton and his team from Verandern lead a session on the emotions of change. Change leadership is needed in public sector. We need true transformation not incrementalism. But change is hard. They took the assembled delegates through a practical change management exercise, transforming us into a gospel choir in half an hour, despite many delegates' reservations at the start about the idea of singing in public at all.

The day concluded with CIPFA in the North East's Annual General Meeting, presided over by Regional President Clive Johnson.

Copies of the presenters' slides from the day are available..