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Becoming a Vice Chair!

‘If not now when’ was the phrase that sprung to mind when I first considered putting my name forward as an APComm vice chair.

Do I have the time, the experience, the confidence, the knowledge? Of course, thinking about these things too much can lead to paralysis, so sometimes the best thing to do is just go for it and embrace the challenge.

Once I realised I had been fortunate enough to secure a place (thank you if you voted for me!)  the doubts and insecurities have started to slowly ebb away. Reassuringly, everyone has been so welcoming and friendly which naturally makes a big difference. By this, I mean both the two chairs Kate and Ruth and the re-elected members of the Exec, as well as the fellow ‘newbie’ vice chairs.

Our first monthly meeting was conducted on Teams. It featured a discussion on the business and training plan, ideas about succession planning for a new secretary...(how will we manage without Jacqui when she retires?), establishing a rota to produce the monthly bulletin - your ideas for submissions are always welcome by the way! - and putting names forward to lead on the various workstreams APComm want to deliver this year. We had a further meeting – face to face – in February in Birmingham  – as you I am sure all appreciate Teams is great but to be able to properly converse with fellow vice chairs is so much more rewarding and satisfying with richer, more spontaneous discussions had.

So now the hard work begins and from me three final takeaways - it is a small team that gets things done for the benefit of all of us. Just look at this infographic of last year’s amazing achievements.

It is a collective effort – what is achieved can’t be done alone. We will be coming to you for help and ideas to support the various workstreams we have planned, as well as the training sessions, virtual Academy and ‘in-person’ Academy.

Thirdly, to be part of such a set-up, is a real privilege that I won’t take lightly. Remember, I think you’d be hard pressed to find a similar professional network in policing that does so much for its staff.

Any regrets?…no…just that I wished I had put my name forward sooner.

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Jonathan  Ford

Jonathan Ford is Senior News Officer at Suffolk Constabulary