A couple of months ago, the Principles of Community Committee unveiled a draft of the Principles of Community document at the May 20 town hall meeting.
The committee thought that a survey would be helpful in soliciting your feedback so that we may capture your thoughts, comments and suggestions into the final version.
Please read the draft document at http://ucanr.edu/About_ANR/Principles_of_Community.
We'll give you a few weeks to share your thoughts then the POC Committee will compile your comments and suggestions before we reconvene to revise our document.
Please submit your ideas through the ANR portal at http://ucanr.edu/About_ANR/Principles_of_Community/Comments_and_questions_are_welcome_648/ by Aug. 31, 2016. We welcome all your comments and suggestions.
Thank you in advance,
The UC ANR Principles of Community Committee
- Author: Jeannette Warnert
“I'm especially pleased to be able to bring this announcement to you,” Humiston said. “Principles of Community and staff assembly are milestones in the history of the Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources.”
Late last year, Humiston appointed a committee to draft the Principles of Community and she appointed a committee to develop the process for forming the statewide ANR Staff Assembly.
“I want to offer my sincere thanks to the members of these committees for their commitment and their work,” Humiston said.
Both committees completed draft documents, which are now on the web for review and input. Staff Assembly bylaws are on the Staff Assembly website. The Principles of Community are on UC ANR's main website. Forms for submitting questions and comments are available for both documents.
Matt Baur, chair of the Staff Assembly committee and associate director of the Western Region IPM Center, introduced the new Staff Assembly framework at the town hall meeting. He said all staff in ANR are part of the Staff Assembly, including all appointment types and county employees.
“Everyone needs to participate in the assembly for it to function properly,” Baur said. “We want to offer opinions and recommendations to leadership on policies, processes and programs, and to channel information from leadership back to the staff. It's a two-way information flow.”
Part of the assembly's mission will be offering learning opportunities, career training and professional development to ANR staff to further career advancement. Humiston said the Staff Assembly joins Academic Assembly as equally important pieces of shared governance for UC ANR.
Two members of the Staff Assembly committee will represent ANR at the statewide meeting in June of the Council of UC Staff Assemblies. In the fall, winter and spring, ANR Staff Assembly plans to hold regional meetings around the state to engage staff in the organization.
The Principles of Community were outlined at the Town Hall by committee chair Terri White, executive assistant for Communication Services and Information Technology. She said the committee started its work with 31 pages of comments from the environmental assessment workshops. They looked for commonalities to identify workshop participants' suggestions for creating a welcoming and inclusive workplace.
“With our group, we determined that fairness, trust, respect, physical and emotional safety and security were important. That was what we felt our target was,” White said. “We vetted our early draft with 12 academics and staff and introduced it to leadership in March. Now we're looking to all of you for input.”
The principles outlined in the document are:
- Ensure open communication
- Work together to achieve common goals and mutual understandings
- Value the contribution and worth of all members
- Appreciate and celebrate differences and diversity
- Foster a sense of belonging and emotional safety
- Practice mutual respect
- Demonstrate ethics and integrity
- Invest in all members
- Recognize that all members are important
In closing the town hall session, Humiston noted that the larger vision of the Division is outlined in the Strategic Vision 2025 and that the existing Strategic Initiatives will continue for at least another five years.
“As we're working together, that's our vision of where we are and where we are going as we implement the Principals of Community and utilize the Staff Assembly to get us there,” Humiston said.
View the 27-minute video of the town hall below.
Respect, trust, accountability, shared vision, integrity and partnerships are needed to sustain a welcoming and inclusive ANR workplace environment.
UC ANR's Principles of Community Committee met for the first time on Sept. 29 in Davis to develop an outline for the Principles of Community. This document will serve as a guide for ANR employees to resolve and address conflict. In creating the Principles of Community, the committee strives to promote positive communications in the staff and academic personnel units, represent all organizational units, and provide examples of best practices.
Elizabeth Villalobos of Fresno County was elected chair and Tina Jordan of Davis was elected co-chair by the committee, which also includes Mary Blackburn, Emily LaRue, Chris Martinez, Laura Snell, Katherine Soule, Erin Spaniel, Jeff Tibayan and Terri White.
In 2012, ANR embarked on a journey to find out about the status of the working and learning environment across the entire UC system. As soon as the findings came in, ANR put into place an action plan.
This plan included regional workshops across the state to present results to all employees and to offer opportunities for employees to discuss the findings. One of the findings selected for discussion was the prevalence of “exclusionary behavior” experienced by employees. To help address this issue and to create a more welcoming and inclusive work environment, ANR leadership announced that a set of Principles of Community would be developed and used as a tool for education and training. To solicit input from the employees for the principles, 24 breakout sessions were held this year. At the end of each session, volunteers were recruited to form a statewide committee that would use the input from the employees to develop the Principles of Community for ANR.
After reviewing the charge, the Principles of Community Committee broke into groups to identify common themes derived from the 24 work environment breakout sessions held earlier this year.
The committee found that many ANR staff members viewed communication, perspectives, commonalities, age and generational differences to be both challenges and benefits for a diverse workforce. Respect, trust, accountability, shared vision, integrity, and partnerships were common values necessary to make a community and are characteristics needed to sustain a welcoming and inclusive ANR workplace environment. The committee also learned how ANR employees voiced their opinions on specific rights and responsibilities within the community such as communication, respect, a safe place, training, tools and work ethic, to name a few.
With the help from Emily LaRue, the committee's scribe, our team is on track to make history. We anticipate delivering a first draft of the principles and implementation plan by the end of the 2015 calendar year with a final draft due to ANR leadership in February 2016.
The committee plans to meet by conference call every two weeks. Feel free to contact any committee member with suggestions to share with the group because we want to capture the voices of ANR employees as we work to foster a more welcoming and inclusive work environment. Before we begin developing an implementation strategy, there will also be an opportunity for UC ANR members to provide comment and feedback.
The Principles of Community Committee wants you to know that we have heard what you have said and plan to develop a set of principles to help minimize the exclusionary behaviors staff has experienced in the past and move all to a positive working environment.
Author: Erin Spaniel (Thompson)
On behalf of the Work Environment Assessment Committee, we want to thank all who volunteered to be part of statewide committees to create an ANR Staff Assembly and to develop UC ANR Principles of Community. Response throughout the six regional workshops was tremendous and we appreciate your enthusiasm.
From the list of nearly 50 volunteers, committee rosters were developed that balance people from different areas of the state and different job responsibilities in order to provide a diverse representation of UC ANR. For those not selected, we sincerely appreciate your willingness to serve and to be part of these committees.
Here are the committee members:
UC ANR Staff Assembly
UC ANR Principles of Community
The Staff Assembly will be a mechanism through which non-academic staff will be able to voice their issues, concerns and suggestions. The committee will meet throughout the fall and then provide a report to UC ANR Senior Leadership in February 2016.
The Principles of Community Committee will also work throughout the fall, taking the input from all of the Work Environment Assessment Workshops. The committee will work together to develop a draft set of Principles of Community for UC ANR by February 2016.
Both committees will reach out for feedback and will provide updates on a regular basis.
Thank you again to our volunteers who stepped up to create the first UC ANR Staff Assembly and to develop our own UC ANR Principles of Community.
Jan Corlett, chief of staff to the vice president
Linda Marie Manton, executive director for ANR Staff Personnel