Going the Extra Distance

Sevenoaks District Council is immensely proud of its reputation as a “seriously different council”. It manages over 70 different services, serving 49,000 households and around 115,000 people. Over the last ten years it has gained recognition for being one the best of its kind in the UK. It was the first organisation in the South East to achieve Investors in People Platinum accreditation, and is the first local authority to become financially self-sufficient.

The Council was determined to ensure we did everything in our power to protect the services we provide to our residents, acknowledging that we needed to take greater risks and give our staff the freedom to innovate and go where no council had gone before.”
Dr Pav Ramewal
Chief Executive
Sevenoaks District Council

The Achievements

Good leadership is vital for public sector organisations.From the early stages of its journey, Sevenoaks District Council has recognised that it is heavily reliant on goodwill and needs every individual to go the extra distance. Today, its key strengths in terms of the IIP roadmap reflect a very real commitment to fostering leadership skills at every level.

Leading & inspiring people

This is an area where Sevenoaks has proved exceptional – staff surveys show an incredible 98% of people feeling confident in the senior leadership team.

Living the values & behaviours

Fairness, integrity and quality are the Council’s three core values. The behaviours expected of staff towards colleagues and customers are spelt out using the acronym ‘Sevenoaks’.

Empowering & involving people

There is a clear commitment to building the capability of all staff. The Council has designed its own innovative development programme ‘Personal Best’, and it has developed an outstanding coaching culture.

For this level of efficiency, every employee has to be high performing. Happiness and fulfilment is a key measure in terms of staff satisfaction, linking directly to motivation and performance. The success of this very human aspect of the challenge is mirrored in the Council’s Platinum IIP accreditation, and it’s a story well worth sharing.

"We encourage a degree of risk-taking across the board and try to devolve our decision-making, so that decisions which will impact our customers are taken as close to those customers as possible, by frontline staff.”
Jim Carrington-West | Chief Officer for Corporate Services
Sevenoaks District Council