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UITP staff gathered (mostly still from home behind their laptops) for the virtual staff retreat over the second half of September. Throughout almost 20 different sessions in a two week period, the organisation looked to its future, exploring how to innovate, be a better partner to its members and continue to implement and expand the People First Strategy, which you will hear more about in the coming months.
The topics of the sessions ranged from improving the member experience and trends in public transport to internal communications and blended working. By bringing all colleagues from different departments and regions together to discuss these topics, the association gained a broad insight into what it does well, what needs to be improved and where future opportunities lie.
UITP’s datasets for example, are a valuable asset to the entire public transport and urban mobility sector. With one colleague remarking that “we are the only ones that provide a truly global overview.” But the accessibility of the data is an area with room for improvement. Meanwhile, expanding the number of languages used is a key topic for UITP to be a better partner to its more than 1,800 members in over 100 countries.
The COVID-19 pandemic affected UITP just like it did any other organisation. And looking ahead, combining working from home and in the office, also known as hybrid working, will be the reality very soon.
In sessions focussing on this new way of working, the benefits of this hybrid working were abundantly clear. For most, it means a better work life balance, more flexibility and more efficient working. However, UITP is still an organisation centred around people. “We are social beings and have to maintain our social relationships, informal contacts and informal meetings.”
As these two weeks of introspection come to a close, UITP will look at the actions to take. Where do we follow up? What has already been changed for the better? And how can we grow even stronger? But most importantly, UITP will continue its work to bring together all public transport and urban mobility stakeholders from across the world.