Posted by gavazzi.1 in Dean's message
Created on April 29, 2011 at 4:23pm
And tagged with: Ohio State Mansfield
“Celebrate what you want to see more of.” (Thomas J. Peters)
A short time ago, a memo went out to our OSU Mansfield community announcing the First Annual OSU Mansfield Campus Day of Celebration, to held on June 10, 2011. There are three parts to this inaugural event for staff and faculty, including an informal lunch, an afternoon award and recognition ceremony, and an evening reception. My hope is that it will become a tradition on our campus, one that celebrates all of our accomplishments over the past academic year.
In discussing previous end of the year events, I had come to find out that there were some significant issues that seemed to produce certain barriers to full participation by staff and faculty alike. These issues included – but were not limited to – the location, timing, and cost of these events. Hence, I made some decisions in consultation with staff and faculty (largely through our Executive Committee) that would allow us to take these sorts of issues off the table. For starters, there are three events throughout the day, allowing individuals the maximum likelihood of being able to attend at least one event. As well, two of the three events are being held on campus, eliminating travel requirements. Further, these events will be free to staff and faculty members, removing the cost barrier.
At the same time, I also caught wind of some concerns that any amount of money spent on a celebratory event could be seen as jeopardizing someone’s employment on our campus. We are facing a very significant budget shortfall, and my office has pledged to cut jobs only as a last resort. However, the fact of the matter is that we still face some unknowns, so I wanted to make sure everyone understood that the financial support for these events would be coming from my discretionary fund. This fund has been maintained through private donations, and hence in no way threatens the depletion of general revenue dollars that are used to employ all of us.
It’s probably fairly easy to tell that I felt very strongly about not only maintaining but actually increasing our campus community’s ability to celebrate the accomplishments and milestones of our staff and faculty members. Why, you might ask? Among other things, in almost every book and article that has been written about highly functional organizations, you will find some mention of the need to commemorate the successes, skills, and talents of its members. And this is just as true in bad economic times as in good ones.
I see our own organization as quickly moving toward a situation in which all of the right things are in place to move from good to great. But how quickly will we make that transition? One significant piece of evidence regarding the degree of progress that we are making will revolve around the amount of campus member participation we see at such celebratory events. So, here’s to hoping that I see all of you at these events! And in the meantime, as always please take the time to enjoy the weekend with family and friends!