All posts by Karen Mather

"A constructive culture and leadership through Organisational Development: Enabling people to make a difference - to UC’s future." The goal of Organisational Development (OD) is to facilitate organisational transformation by enabling and growing a culture that drives an organisation’s strategic goals. OD initiatives and projects support senior leadership to develop an agile and responsive workforce and organisation. OD is often defined as a systematic approach to align strategy, people and processes. UC's People Strategy can be found here: http://www.canterbury.ac.nz/about/hr/people-strategy/

First Tertiary Technicians Symposium: Registrations now open

The symposium I posted about late last year is now open for registrations. You can find all the details and how to register on the ATEM website.

What: The Aotearoa ATEM committee is organising a Tertiary Technicians Symposium.

The aim of the day is to improve the visibility and recognition of our technical workforce, provide them with an opportunity to network with their peers and help them explore professional development opportunities.

Where: Victoria University of Wellington
When: 10 – 11 February 2020

If anyone does attend, I would be interested to hear your feedback.  Karen Mather, OD Manager

First Tertiary Technicians Symposium: save the date and register interest (ATEM)

Kia ora Technical Staff

I have received information of an opportunity in the New Year. UC is a member of ATEM* so if there is a discount for members, ensure this is applied when registering.

“The Aotearoa ATEM committee is organising a Tertiary Technicians Symposium on the 10th February 2020 at Victoria University of Wellington. The aim of the day is to improve the visibility and recognition of our technical workforce, provide them with an opportunity to network with their peers and help them explore professional development opportunities. This is intended to be an interactive day with workshops to untangle the new Worksafe regulations and some psychological first aid training to help technicians who are encountering students with emotional and mental health issues. We hope to bring in a keynote from Weta Digital for some inspiration followed by a panel of tertiary technicians sharing their career pathways and professional development choices. If that is not enough to get you all excited we are also organising some site visits to other tertiary providers on the morning of Tuesday 11th February for those who are interested in exploring the technical facilities of their fellow institutions.

Date: Monday 10 & Tues 11 February 2020, Venue: VUW, Pipitea Campus.  See more details in our Draft Agenda and please register your interest via email and we will notify you of the opening of the registrations as soon as they open.”

*Association for Tertiary Education Management

Grants for initiatives to boost gender equity and equality

Further to my recent post on ACU membership benefits, this is a heads up that ACU offers an annual grant to member universities to support initiatives that will boost gender equity and equality.

They say…. “The grants can be used for a diverse range of projects, workshops, and events in areas such as:

  • Supporting women in leadership
  • Raising awareness of sexual harassment and developing anti-sexual harassment initiatives
  • Supporting women in science and research
  • Creating effective institutional policies
  • Mainstreaming gender equity into the curriculum.”

Keep an eye on their site for the opening date.

Karen Mather, Organisational Development Manager, Human Resources

Leverage our membership of the Association of Commonwealth Universities (ACU)

Membership Benefits

The University of Canterbury is a member of the Association of Commonwealth Universities (ACU). Our membership provides access to a number of exciting, interesting and challenging opportunities such as conference grants for early career academic staff, academic fellowships, and grants to support initiatives that will boost gender equity and equality.

There are opportunities to “Get Involved” – collaborations across the Commonwealth e.g. “Global challenges”, “Access and inclusion”.

There’s also a range of opportunities for our students including scholarships, summer school grants, and fellowships.

Current opportunity promoted on the ACU site

“A Queen Elizabeth Commonwealth Scholarship is a unique opportunity to study for a two-year Master’s at an ACU member institution across the Commonwealth.

Through cultural exchange and academic collaboration, Queen Elizabeth Commonwealth Scholars help bring about positive change and find solutions to the shared challenges we face – both in their home countries and those that host them. Applications are open until 15 January 2020.   Find out more on our website

Newsletter “acu syntHEsis”.

I will endeavour to publicise opportunities as they arise but the best way for you to be sure of current rounds in a timely way would be to subscribe to their newsletter.

The newsletter is monthly. The current issue is available via the ACU Synthesis link. To subscribe and keep in touch with news and opportunities, email membership@acu.ac.uk.

About ACU

  • The Association of Commonwealth Universities is an international organisation dedicated to building a better world through higher education.
  • International collaboration is central to this ambition: by bringing universities together from around the world – and crucially the people who study and work within them – the ACU helps to advance knowledge, promote understanding, broaden minds, and improve lives.
  • The ACU champions higher education as a cornerstone of stronger societies, supporting its members, partners, and stakeholders as they adapt to a changing world.” (ACU homepage).

Liaison and our information page

  • See our intranet page to access the ACU site
  • I am the liaison person for ACU so talk to me if you want more information.

Karen Mather, Organisational Development Manager, Human Resources.

Psychology of work, performance and wellbeing – Whiria te Taura Tangata #20

Kia ora e hoa!

I am on the cusp of a week’s leave which will definitely contribute to my own wellbeing.  So this is a short, but hopefully sweet, posting.

Blue CLUES and Weaving the Rope – November – Psychology of work, performance and wellbeing session – next month we are very excited to be co-hosting, along with the College of Business and Law and the College of Science, Professor Michael Leiter from Deakin University, a world-renowned expert in the psychology of work!

Combining Blue CLUES and Weaving the Rope sessions together this time has allowed us run the same one hour session twice on 7 November to give you two options of time. Attendance is limited to 100 people per session.  There’s more information and registration details in this blog.

Weaving the Rope – our inaugural organisational culture sessions for all staff were held late last month. It was good to go back to basics and look at the How Culture Works Model. About 150 people attended and you can see details about what we covered on the OD website soon.

Opening up those silos – an article caught my attention this morning, especially the comments about intra-unit cooperation generally being high (we work well together) but inter-unit coordination is often seen as being problematic (they are difficult to work with).

That situation plays out in many of the culture outcomes across UC’s results. Is that your experience? If so, then the article might be worth five minutes of your time.  Trying to work across silos can be frustrating and detrimental to our wellbeing at work.

“If we want to achieve great things at work, to solve challenging and meaningful problems, and to live and work in constructive cultures — we must cultivate a broader sense of We”.

Ngā mihi, Karen Mather, Organisational Development Manager

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