March 2016

ClimateQual Next Steps
Most of you will be aware of the work we undertook to examine our organizational climate. That work, which involved our use of the ClimateQUAL survey a year ago, was intended to help us better understand our organizational strengths and weaknesses and to structure our work (giving attention to the organizational climate) going forward. I am grateful for the outstanding work done by the ClimateQUAL Working Group in conducting the survey, and the ClimateQUAL Response Team in drafting recommendations for our work going forward. Those recommendations can be found on the Library’s website along with other ClimateQUAL documents.

The Library’s Executive Committee recently received the draft report from the ClimateQUAL Response Team and expressed its gratitude for the hard work and useful recommendations. Ultimately, efforts such as this should move from being ad hoc to more formally shaping the institution, and that time has come. As was pointed out before the Retreat, our planning as embodied in the Framework for Strategic Action formalizes our organizational commitment with the goal that we “Promote a vibrant and dynamic organizational culture and structure that is supportive of and benefits from diversity and inclusion” (3.c), and recognizing this need as a part of organizational planning is an important step.

I commented recently that the responsibility for a strong organizational climate rests with all of us, and I believe we are successful because our genuine collective ownership of this responsibility. It is my belief, as well, that as dean I have a special role and responsibility for our organizational climate. The ClimateQUAL Response Team report should be read by all of us and the recommendations should guide all of our work going forward. Nevertheless, I am making a commitment to assume responsibility for the recommendations in the dean’s office and to attend to that work going forward. I have asked Cindy Ingold to serve as my special advisor on these issues, meeting with me regularly and helping me shape an agenda and ongoing activities. Cindy will continue to serve as Gender Studies and Multicultural Services Librarian while undertaking this work. My special thanks to both Cindy and to Nancy O’Brien for their generosity. Expect to see regular activities and periodic notes with regard to recommendations in the ClimateQUAL Response Team report.

Both at the retreat and in the ClimateQUAL survey there was much candid and encouraging feedback on the efforts we have made. Thanks to all of you for sharing your thoughts. There were also several helpful suggestions for ways that we can improve. Someone noted that Paula met with each librarian once a year, and that this was missed. While I do meet with many of you as a matter of course (e.g., meeting with you as division coordinators or as untenured faculty), there are other librarians who are not on my calendar, and Kim will extend an invitation to you. Another person commented on the value of the AUL office hours and expressed an interest in my offering office hours as well. We’ll begin work scheduling periodic Office Hours with the Dean. The suggestion that we initiate a Library happy hour was a superb one, but will need to wait.

We will continue to strengthen our efforts with regard to all aspects of organizational climate, including diversity in hiring and in the workplace. Please look for a note on the hiring process from me in an upcoming LON. Thanks again to all of you for your commitment and your comments. I’m deeply grateful for your contributions to the University Library and look forward to working with everyone on the next steps.

John Wilkin
The Juanita J. and Robert E. Simpson Dean of Libraries and University Librarian