Tag Archives: organisational culture

We are all in this together – Whiria te Taura Tangata #14

Kia ora koutou!

He waka eke noa.

My understanding of this whakataukī is “we are all in this together”.

It uses the waka as a symbol of the need for cooperation and collaboration in order to move together towards a shared place or vision. With the Colleges of Arts and Engineering, and now the UC Health Centre, receiving their culture results we can now truly say this is the case.

Blue CLUES. The planning for the first Blue CLUES is underway and invitations will be sent soon to those in Culture Leadership roles.  The invitation is still open for work areas to host one of these seminars – open the session, contribute to the content etc. so just let me know if you wish to take this opportunity.

Contributions welcome. Contributions to this blog are welcome. If you have a story to share, feel free to talk to me or post it yourself.

Culture Bites Podcasts.The podcasts by Human Synergistics Australia are a useful resource that can be listened to, for example, in the car. The latest one “But in this industry we have to be like that…”  David Byrum and Dominic Gourley from Human Synergistics discuss the concept of different cultures within different industries – “In a University, we have to be Oppositional because …..” You can listen to it here (or download to your phone): But in this Industry we have to be like that…

Change in OD Team. Karen Grant has taken up a new role within HR as Reward and Recognition Consultant. Karen’s contribution to getting the culture development programme to this point has been significant and I thank her for everything she has done. Rachel Dillon, who has worked here as an HR Advisor, is now in the OD Advisor role.  Rachel will be managing the LSI, OCI/OEI, Blue CLUES etc. – so say kia ora.

Finding Out More

Ngā manaakitanga (with best wishes), Karen

Karen Mather
Organisational Development Manager


Team Management Profile

To encourage interactions at the group level across UC we have piloted the Team Management Profile (TMP) throughout 2018.  Close to 300 staff having taken the strengths-based self-assessment survey and then participated in a variety of workshops to debrief the results.

In addition to providing individual feedback on areas for development, the tool allows us to understand the working preferences of our colleagues.  This in turn is helping UC staff to overcome barriers that may have existed, and is leading to improved working relationships and performance.

Feedback has been positive from people who have used the tool, with many saying how fun and interactive the workshops are.

Some other comments received include:

“I used the TMP pacing tool before our first meeting and I felt it really made a difference.  Our communication style matched what it predicted, and I felt we achieved more in the meeting.”

“My Team have commented that they found it really interesting as well as fun.  They have all commented on the revelation that everyone in the Team would rather have a conversation about something rather than sending emails.  In just 24 hours I have seen staff being much freer in communicating face to face as we all now understand that this is a communication style that works for all of us.”

“I have had staff express to me how they are excited about being able to focus more on where their strengths lie and how they now have some more insight into how others operate at work.”

“I’ve had two 1:1 meetings with staff today and both staff members were eager to talk about their profiles in terms of what they are learning about themselves and generating ideas about how we could capitalise on the preferred working styles of the whole Team.”

If you are interested in finding out how the TMP could benefit your Research Group/Team/Area please talk to your HR Advisor.

Blue CLUES #4 – Moving Groups from the Red to the Blue

A reminder that our final Blue CLUES sessions for 2018 are being held next week (Tuesday 20 and Wednesday 21 November).  If you would like to come along and have not yet registered, please email organisationaldevelopment@canterbury.ac.nz

Hei konā mai

Karen Grant
Organisational Development Advisor

Whiria te Taura Tangata | Weave the Rope of People – UC’s Organisational Culture Development Programme

Another Blue CLUES session, some thoughts, and more… UC’s Organisational Culture Transformation – update #5

Kia ora koutou katoa

What’s this all about?
If you are just getting involved in UC’s organisational culture development programme or you are new to UC, here’s some background….
– UC’s Culture Development Programme – a collection of resources
– UC’s Culture Development Timeline – what’s happening when?
Cutting through the noise: What is Culture? – a good read on what organisational culture is and why it matters (pdf).

This month’s thought: from a Service Unit Manager whose team is a few months into working with their culture results…
“Our team culture has improved. Blame has left our vocabulary.”

The second Blue CLUES session is in the planning phase. Thanks for completing the survey after the first session and letting us know what you want from this learning community. We now have 180+ people in leadership roles who are involved in culture development so this time I am planning one session, but repeating it twice. This means we will have two smaller interactive groups plus you have the choice of two times. The session is likely to be held the week commencing 18 June. The working title is….

“Leading a Team out of the Green and into the Blue”

… and there will be a focus on building understanding of an Approval, Conventional, Dependent and Avoidance culture as well as formulating some strategies to reinforce the constructive styles. Look out for your invitation!

Information about the first Blue CLUES (including videos of the presentation and subsequent panel Q&A) can be found in my Blog #4.

* Blue refers to the four constructive styles – Achievement, Self-Actualising, Humanistic-Encouraging and Affiliative. CLUES is an acronym – Culture Leadership Understanding and Education Seminars.

“Culture Bites” Podcasts
Human Synergistics publish a variety of resources, here’s a couple to listen to:
– 001 Kickstarting a Passive Team (from a team member’s perspective) – 19 minute audio
– 002 Dealing with Delegation – 30 minute audio. There are good linkages here to the circumplex and behaviours as well as some suggested strategies for successful delegation e.g. reframing delegation towards the development of others as well as a way of maximising output. It also talks about ‘brave’ conversations and why people value feedback.

Finding Out More
– See UC’s Culture Development Programme website for more information on the UC programme, the underpinning research, tools, articles and white papers, FAQs and more.
– Share your good news storiesabout culture change.
– Previous blogs.

Ngā mihi nui
Karen Mather, Organisational Development Manager

Blue CLUES (what’s that?) and working more effectively in Teams: UC’s Organisational Culture Development – update #4

Nau mai haere mai!

Blue CLUES* is a newly formed learning community for UC Leaders supporting the organisational culture development programme. The purpose of the community is to support constructive relationships and connections that encourage learning from each other and from experts, enable sharing and solving of challenges, and provide a place for collaborating on opportunities and initiatives.

Culture Leaders are SMT-nominated and generally include all members of an area’s Executive team, those leading teams of five or more, plus others in significant or influential roles in that area. To prepare for facilitating the debrief of the OCI/OEI results as well as enable ongoing culture development and initiatives within their area and beyond, Culture Leaders undertake the LSI, attend UC’s Leading Change and Coaching Conversations workshops, and a 2-day Culture Leader training workshop facilitated by Human Synergistics.

The inaugural Blue CLUES was held on the 22 March and 130 of the current 180 UC Culture Leaders attended. The two-hour session began with a presentation from Shaun McCarthy (Human Synergistics). Then followed a panel Q&A session – with Rod Carr, Darryn Russell, Anne Scott, Iain MacPherson, Janet Carter, Catherine Moran and Letitia Fickel, along with Shaun and Pam Wilson (Human Synergistics).

It was great to see the engagement and interest from those present. You can read more about this session and watch YouTube footage on the Blue CLUES website. More sessions are planned. Culture Leaders – your ideas on the structure and content of further sessions is welcomed via the survey on the webpage link above or you can email organisational.development@canterbury.ac.nz.

*’Blue’ refers to the four constructive styles – Achievement, Self-Actualising, Humanistic-Encouraging and Affiliative.
CLUES is an acronym formed from Culture Leadership Understanding and Education Seminars.

Team Management Profile – a Pilot
As part of our culture development efforts, we are piloting a tool called the Team Management Profile to assist individuals within teams to analyse their work style preferences and consider their implications for effective team performance. Participating in this individual and team analysis, together with facilitated discussions about how we work together, supports the constructive behaviours we are building across UC.

The Team Management Profile (TMP)…

“… gives you insights into how you prefer to work and how you are likely to interact with others in the workplace…..The Profile gives you information about your probable areas of strengths at work and within a team. It is the starting point for learning and development, and a tool that will give you a better understanding of how to maximise your potential and work with others.”

Here’s more about the tool and the research behind it.

We’ve approached a small number of work areas to pilot this programme. Once we’ve evaluated how this supports the organisational culture development already underway, we’ll decide whether to utilise this more widely. If you would like more information about this pilot you can talk to my colleague Karen Grant.

Finding Out More
– See UC’s Culture Journey website for more information on the UC programme, tools, articles and white papers, FAQs and more.
– Share your good news stories about culture change. Snippet of news? Use the short format. More reflective story to tell? Use the slightly longer format (suitable for Culture Leaders).
Previous blogs

Mā te wā
Noho ora mai
Karen Mather, Organisational Development Manager