Team Leader, Planning Enforcement, MBA Apprentice

Photo of Richard Stott, Planning Enforcement Team Leader, MBA Apprentice
Rich manages the enforcement of Planning regulations and associated charges, for a wide range of Planning applications and development proposals. He's currently doing a higher apprenticeship to gain a Masters Degree in Business Administration.
Since starting at B&NES in 2006, Rich says, "The training and development opportunities have been fantastic, and I have acquired a vast array of skills and qualifications that have helped me develop a wonderful career with great prospects... I've progressed from an admin assistant in the Planning department to Technical Officer, Professional Officer, Senior officer, Principal Officer and now to a Team Manager." On the job, he has taken an impressive array of courses: an MA in Town and Country Planning, become a Chartered Town Planner, completed a Level 5 Management Diploma, and is currently undertaking an MBA in Senior Leadership, paid for by the councils Apprentice Levy. Compared with previous employers, Rich feels that "the respect for staff is the most noticeable difference at B&NES. Senior management are accessible, and staff at all levels are made to feel welcome and supported."
Rich says that flexible working arrangements have made all of this study possible, as well as making it far easier to accommodate the demands of having a young family, the ebb and flow of his workload, and the nature of his role."The ability to work at home is fantastic as it allows the space to concentrate and think," he comments. "It also means that I can technically work anywhere. If I have a meeting in another part of the district I can work from locations more conveniently situated so as to minimise travel time." In turn, he appreciates being able to offer the same leeway to the colleagues that he manages: "Flexibility is linked to trust and I have noticed (as a manager) that my staff perform better, knowing that the council is flexible around their out of work commitments ..."
Rich is really proud of his team and the work that they do. "The team spirit has remained high and I have made some fantastic friends here. I know I have the support of subordinates, peers and superiors alike, which is fantastic. We are good at recruiting highly talented staff, and the insights they can bring is invaluable to our organisation."
In terms of his department's professional mission, he loves "seeing the right thing being done! I relish my team's ability to confront situations and problems head-on, and find solutions that are in the best interests of the wider public. We are here to serve our community... the greatest joy of the job is seeing a positive outcome and enjoying the environment we have helped shape. The positive feedback we get from the public is testament to the team's hard work."