Friday, 4 January 2008

Departmental Vision

Welcome back, and a Happy New Year to you all. I hope your break was a good one, and you’re ready to face 2008!

There are number of exciting developments happening this year, and I’ll be posting about some of them over the next few weeks. To start the New Year off, we will be launching a new departmental vision statement. As many of you know, we’ve had a couple of meetings recently to allow all of the department to comment on and contribute to it. The final one was this afternoon. The meetings were in “world cafĂ©” format – round tables with a mix of staff from different areas of the department.

The Vision Statement which was put forward by the Executive Team was:

“We will be an innovative and influential department, trusted by the University and recognised as leading in the sector, delivering excellent customer-focused services”

The 6 words or phrases highlighted were discussed on 6 tables, with people moving round so that everyone got the chance to discuss all or most of the words. I was interested in whether people thought the words were appropriate, what they meant to everyone, and whether there were alternative words which might be better. We also wanted to know how people thought we could achieve the vision, what did it mean to them and what changes or support might be needed to achieve it.

Paper tablecloths were used for writing on, and it was very pleasing to see lively discussions taking place on all tables.

All of the writing and conclusions are being typed up, and we’ll be using them over the next couple of weeks to refine the statement – which will be launched at the next departmental meeting – and provide feedback to everyone who attended, as well as those who didn’t.

First results seem to indicate that on the whole people are happy with the vision statement, although both groups disliked the word “trusted”. One group commented that by putting it in the vision, it implied we weren’t trusted at the moment. Another group suggested that “respected’ might be better.

Thanks to everyone who attended and took part, and I hope it was an enjoyable and useful event.

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