Two logics about the design and management of work in People Centred Systems:

Command and Control
(traditional logic)
  Beyond Command and Control
(the Vanguard Method)
‘Meet the KPIs, satisfy the regulator’. Purpose ‘Help me to live my life the way I want to.’/
‘Help us to live our lives the way we want to.’
Control. Paternalistic. Deficit-based. Ethos Learn and improve. Strengths-based. Understand and enable citizen and community strengths and assets.
Top-down, hierarchical view of service provision from internal point of view. Perspective Outside-in, from the citizen’s point of view.
Owned (controlled) by professionals. Control Owned (controlled) by citizens.
Service users. Passive, homogenous, rationally-acting ‘consumers’ of services. Identity Citizens have unique social identities.
Identify and respond to problems/crises. Centralised control. Functional specialisms. Multiple front doors. Deficit-based view creates labels, pulls funding and leads to commissioning of services. Purchaser (commissioner) / provider split leads to adversarial relationships, with focus on reduction of unit costs / maximising revenue. Method What matters / what does a good life look like to you?’ The ‘good life’ determines assets to be explored and strengths to be developed. Boundaries and timescales set by citizen. Collaborative approach to commissioning around shared purpose. Individuals are supported to help themselves to live their good lives within their communities.
Reactive. Presenting, episodic demand viewed in transactional snapshots as new, separate cases, with no understanding of ‘failure demand’. Demand perceived to be increasing, threatening to overwhelm system. View
of demand
Proactive. Preventative.  Demand is contextual and relational – requiring an understanding of a citizen’s dynamic ‘good life’, as this changes over time. Relationships allow for flexible support on a ‘pull’ basis as required.
Bureaucratic, professionalised. ‘Assess-refer-do’ loops. Gatekeeping. Standardised, specified services are ‘pushed’ from a menu of responses, which may give way to punitive sanctions and labelling of people. Information resides within agency silos.
Efficiency achieved via lower transaction costs (eg ‘digital by default’).
Provision of services to treat symptoms.
Response to demand Bespoke to situation. Citizen-led. Demonstrates requisite variety. Expertise and services ‘pulled’ in as necessary. Relationships allow for thermostatic responses to changes in a citizen’s circumstances. (Re)build strengths, support and networks, let solutions emerge.  Knowledge and expertise resides where required.
Economies flow from achieving what matters.
Strengthened systems to prevent symptoms.
Behave and comply. Role of citizens Create fulfilling identities / relationships.
Be safe, be efficient, be compliant. Extrinsically motivated, require incentivising. Role of workers Autonomy to do what is right to enable citizens and communities. Establish relationships. Listen and understand. Help people to help themselves.  Intrinsically motivated.
Act on the people. Manage achievement of activity measures and control costs against budget. Role of managers Act on the system to achieve purpose and what matters.
Separated from the work, via the hierarchy. Decision-making Integrated with the work, via the workers, citizens and communities.
Workers and their managers must be held to account for errors. Working to policies and procedures mitigates and protects workers and citizens against risk.  Regulation and retrospective inspection ensure compliance. Attitude to risk The best route to countering risk is to support responsible, adaptable workers to spend sufficient time alongside people, understanding their unique context and building relationships. Systems exist to enable workers to do a good job and to support citizens to make and implement informed choices.
Activity and budget management measures. Measure delivery against specifications. Obscures ability to see cases which present repeatedly. Measures Achievement of purpose: measure impact on citizen’s good life, the wider system and community. Measure to learn and improve.
Economies of scale: lowest unit cost. Optimising efficiency of parts believed to maximise efficiency overall. Costs Economies of flow: costs are in flow, end-to-end. Efficiency gained as result of increasing effectiveness of whole system.
Projects. Reactive. Planned. Silos remain. Approach to change Adaptive. Integral. Emergent. Boundaries dissolved.
Deterioration. Service dependency.  Lack of control. Inflated ‘failure demand’, waste and end-to-end costs. Outcomes Citizens have agency. Enabled to live their good lives. Stronger individuals and communities, lower costs and reduced demand.
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