Goal 3 Strengthen library cohesion to better serve the campus
This goal recognizes the need to build systems, processes, and overall organizational capacity for engaging library employees around their expertise while supporting their excellence as individuals and in teams. This enables us to better serve our patrons and demonstrate high standards of professionalism, excellence, and teamwork within Binghamton University, across SUNY, and for academic libraries nationally.
Strategy 1: Create opportunities to improve individual employee well-being and professional growth.
Having employees who feel valued and cared for is a hallmark of healthy organizations and a means of cultivating highly effective teams. We will strive to ensure everyone within the Libraries feels that we have their well-being and professional growth in mind.
- Implement routine HR processes for updating job descriptions and professional development plans, and ensuring timely evaluations, recognition and advancing of personnel cases.
- Create a process, involving supervisors, to regularly assess workload, workflow and the evolving nature of work which engages employees and allows for self-reflection on individual and team strengths and skills.
- Expand recognition of employees' contributions in service to the Libraries, University and community.
- Offer employees opportunities to manage stress, reflect on their own work and encourage physical and mental health wellness.
- Offer employees professional development opportunities with annual development goals created individually and by department.
- Provide training for supervisors to support effective management and assist with their workload and skill development.
- Ensure all employees have a physical workspace that promotes productivity, growth and wellbeing.
- Provide IDEA-specific professional development.
- Support and empower underrepresented employees working within the dominant culture of the organization.
Strategy 2: Support teams and team building to enhance our collective impact on research and academic achievement.
Successful teams recognize they are healthier, stronger and can be more impactful as a collective. They work together toward common goals, embracing the richness that comes with different perspectives and orientations to the work. Successful teams foster leadership among all members at all levels. The Libraries have high functioning teams at the unit and committee level; however, targeted efforts are needed to cultivate a culture of shared work and a mindset of the Libraries as one team.
- Build skills in leadership and teamwork at all levels through professional development and training opportunities.
- Reflect on the Libraries’ committee governance to ensure clarity of roles, diversity, inclusivity, equitable representation and optimal size while identifying ongoing ways to support their effectiveness.
- Create more celebratory interactions that build team spirit and morale.
- Foster a shared understanding of and create an action plan to strengthen inclusion, diversity, equity and accessibility in our workplace.
Strategy 3: Approach internal communication as a priority to foster effective and equitable ways of working.
Many organizations struggle with information becoming siloed and employees feeling out of the loop on organizational decisions. Effective organizations view internal communications as a constant work in progress requiring everyone to see they have a role to play in improving it. The Libraries will develop ongoing mechanisms to advance more meaningful communication. This doesn’t necessarily mean communicating more but would engage everyone in an ongoing process of building a positive and constructive internal communication culture.
- Implement best practices and standards for internal communications, including regular mechanisms to keep people within the library informed, especially where work intersects.
- Develop standards for departmental, committee and library-wide meetings and reporting (including mechanisms for staff feedback and suggesting agenda items to discuss workflow and other issues).
- Develop systems for operational planning that allows everyone to provide input in annual priority setting and action tied to budgeting.