John Hitchin, Renaisi’s CEO writes week notes to capture and reflect on the realities of running a social enterprise.

It feels like this week has really encouraged a shift, with lots more things starting to open up. But I am also struck by how many people I speak to are in almost complete lockdown still, or feeling incredibly guilty for doing anything that hints at breaking the rules from a few weeks ago.

People’s experiences are diverging, and I fear we are losing the opportunity to retain a wider sense of ‘we’, that some were building through the crisis (see the work of the Frameworks Institute on this and other useful framing concepts)

Diary clearing

I’ve been telling myself that I need to clear my diary, but there’s always a reason why something else has to be done. This week I finally did it for a couple of days, and I can’t believe how much work I got through, and how much more structured my thinking was. I am going to keep trying to do it, but it often feels like a losing battle against the demands of working from home and the additional communication needs that brings.

When is localism not localism?

I found this blog by the I-SPHERE team at Heriot-Watt University both interesting and challenging. There’s much that I agree with, but also some conflation of localism with other issues that I feel weakens their argument.

I was reminded of a piece I wrote on different types of meanings of place. That was underlined by the response to a tweet from one of the authors – localism defenders were not happy with the work at all, I while I understood their arguments, I felt like they missed the point.

We often miss the point in the social sector when we’re talking about different things, but using the same words. Impact is another word that does that.

Reading, listening and watching

I hit my head on Thursday evening, and haven’t felt at all myself all weekend. As a result, I’ve not been doing much of anything that involves thought since then. I did watch the Elliott Smith documentary, ‘Heaven Adores You’. It was good on his songwriting, but you felt like there was a significant elephant in the room of his mental health problems and drug addiction. The film kept nodding at them, but never really looked at them, and so he always felt partially drawn.

John Hitchin Renaisi CEO