Message from UC ANR VP Barbara Allen-Diaz
I want you to know how much I appreciate the time that you took to participate in the Work Environment Assessment in 2012. ANR had a phenomenal 64% response rate! I hosted a virtual town hall with you in April of this year after the results were finally released. Today, I want to provide an update on the steps we are taking to follow up on the Work Environment Assessment. Workshops are being planned for the spring of 2015, and a Save the Date message will be coming soon with the date and location of the workshop in each regional grouping.
Goals of the workshop are to:
- share information on what we¹re learning from the assessment results with data by regional grouping as well as overall statewide totals;
- address instances of exclusionary behavior by engaging in a discussion of Principles of Community; and
- share information about the new ANR Staff Assembly.
ANR is committed to ensuring a safe, supportive, inclusive and welcoming work environment for everyone. While overall results from the ANR climate study show that most ANR employees are comfortable in their work environment, some reported discomfort. There is also variation between groups; for example, academics are more comfortable than either represented or non-represented staff. Some employees have experienced exclusionary behavior such as feeling ignored, left out, intimidated or bullied.
Over the past several months, the UC ANR Work Environment Assessment Committee (see roster below) has been working to identify areas of opportunity for improving the work environment for all ANR employees. The first step will be to engage ANR employees through a series of six workshops. All academics, staff and county-paid staff will be invited to participate to discuss data from the work environment assessment and additional insights from prior listening sessions. The assessment data will be provided by regional grouping, as well as a statewide overview.
Although the assessment data that we have does not include campus-based CE specialists (they received the campus version of the survey), they will be invited to participate in the workshops along with the rest of their ANR colleagues.
We are taking two immediate steps to address the issue of exclusionary behavior. First, the workshops will include a session devoted to developing ³Principles of Community² for ANR. Principles of Community provide a foundation for understanding our common values. They define expectations for behavior in the workplace that is professional, welcoming and inclusive. And they provide a framework for addressing issues that may arise in the workplace. After all of the workshops have been completed, the draft Principles will be shared and then finalized.
The second step is to provide a communication mechanism for non-academic staff to voice their issues, concerns and suggestions. ANR academics have the Academic Assembly Council, but there is no similar organization in ANR for staff. Currently all ten campuses, the Berkeley Lab and UCOP have a Staff Assembly organization. There is also a statewide body, called the Council of UC Staff Assemblies (CUCSA) that has representation from all of the Staff Assemblies. I am committed to forming an ANR Staff Assembly. Accordingly, one of the workshop sessions will focus on understanding what an ANR Staff Assembly would do, and why staff would want to be engaged in this organization.
I want to thank the Work Environment Assessment Committee for all of their work to analyze the data and prepare for these workshops. Our work environment is a top priority for me, and I hope you will plan to attend the workshop in your part of the state.