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Creating a Respectful Workplace

Boise State is committed to creating a civil and ethical environment of integrity. This includes personal responsibility, social development, educational excellence, and civic engagement. Supervisors and Managers at Boise State are responsible to establish and encourage a respectful workplace that correlates with the University’s standards and values. Boise State President Dr. Robert Kustra states, “…the way we act impacts Boise State with employees, students, public officials, the community and citizens of Idaho. In Short, our reputation is critical to our success and our actions determine what that reputation will be.” The way we act, conduct ourselves, and treat others determines our success in the workplace and community.

Boise State University’s Statement of Shared Values and Standards of Conduct provide the foundation for acceptable behavior in the workplace and campus community. Every employee should receive a copy of the The Statement of Shared Values upon hire and can be directed to the Standards of Conduct on the President’s webpage. The Shared Values and Standard of Conduct apply to all members of the University community including faculty, academic personnel, staff, students, volunteers, contractors, agents, and University affiliated organizations.

Shared Values

  • Academic Excellence – engage in our own learning and participate fully in the academic community’s pursuit of knowledge.
  • Caring – show concern for the welfare of others.
  • Citizenship– uphold civic virtues and duties that prescribe how we ought to behave in a self-governing community by obeying laws and policies, volunteering in the community, and staying informed on issues.
  • Fairness – expect equality, impartiality, openness and due process by demonstrating a balanced standard of justice without reference to individual bias.
  • Respect – treat people with dignity regardless of who they are and what they believe. A respectful person is attentive, listens well, treats others with consideration and doesn’t resort to intimidation, coercion or violence to persuade.
  • Responsibility – take charge of our choices and actions by showing accountability and not shifting blame or taking improper credit. We will pursue excellence with diligence, perseverance, and continued improvement.
  • Trustworthiness – demonstrate honesty in our communication and conduct while managing ourselves with integrity and reliability.

Membership in the University community is a privilege and not a right. Boise State University is a business and has a duty to uphold standards and values in order to support all students and employees. Boise State University strives to produce a culture of respect that free of discrimination, harassment, threats, and intimidation. The University’s Shared Values and Standards of Conduct are integrated in every aspect of the university community, including employee management. These values can be seen in the performance management system and emphasize the expectation for each of us to act responsibly and respectfully. Boise State University’s Shared Values and Standards of Conduct are an integral part the culture and community on campus. It is imperative that all employees, students, and faculty uphold these values and standards at all times.

Standards of Conduct

  • General
  • Compliance with Applicable Laws and Regulations
  • Compliance with Applicable University Policies, Procedures and Other Forms of Guidance
  • Conflict of Interest or Commitments
  • Scholarly Activity
  • Individual Responsibility and Accountability
  • Workplace Conduct
  • Financial Stewardship
  • Records: Confidentiality/Privacy and Access
  • Copyright and Intellectual Property
  • Gifts and Gratuities
  • Personal, Political and Religious Activities
  • Contacts with the Media and Elected Officials
  • Environment
  • Violations, Reporting, and Enforcement
  • Abuse of This Policy
  • Certificate of Compliance

As a manager it is important that you act in accordance with these standards and ensure that employees are held accountable and adhere to these values and standards. It is the responsibility of the manager to address issues that are inconsistent with the University’s values, standards, and policies. If a manager fails to address issues as they occur, he or she may inadvertently condone a behavior that is not in line with the shared values and conduct requirements. All members of the University must protect the University by reporting potential or apparent violations of law or university policy. While a behavior or action may not be against the law, it may be in violation of the Shared Values and Standards of Conduct, which is prohibited. It is unlawful to retaliate against any individual who reports potential or apparent violations of law or university policy.

Building Respect in the Work Place

Respect is a fundamental social value that allows us to establish and maintain successful relationships, resolve conflicts, bridge culture differences, and appreciate others. Respect is an important aspect of creating a productive and efficient work environment. Respect is critical in managing employees as well as relationship building among employees. Respect must be an expectation in the workplace and takes time, patience, and consistency to develop. Once respect is lost it may be difficult to regain. There are five key components to building respect in the work place.

  • Be mindful of how you address others at work. Speak professionally at all times, and conduct yourself in a way that is in line with the University’s Shared Values and Standards of Conduct.
  • Maintain consistency at work. Lead by example and model behaviors that are positive in creating a respectful work environment.
  • Maintain confidence in your abilities, but don’t be afraid to ask for help. Pretending to know everything may end up losing you the respect of others, whereas asking for help when you need it can assist in building respect.
  • Be considerate of the needs and opinions of others. Allow employees to take part in decision making and work as a team. When employees feel that their opinions and needs are valued, they are more likely to sustain an environment of respect.
  • Respond appropriately to challenge, frustration and discord in the workplace. By working to address issues timely and appropriately, you can avoid “losing your cool” and acting unprofessionally. Seek outside guidance from leadership or your HR representatives if you are struggling to respond professionally. And remember, your actions and body language often speak louder than words – be sensitive to non-verbal communication as well as verbal communication. Blowing up, raising your voice, becoming argumentative or rude are all behaviors that do not meet our values and standards of conduct.

Creating a Respectful Workplace

The University’s Shared Values and Standards of Conduct are guidelines for creating a respectful workplace. All members of the Boise State community are responsible for taking an active role in creating a respectful workplace. As managers, it is important to realize that you are responsible for not only your own actions, but the actions of your employees. Creating a respectful work place will result in happier employees, productivity, motivation, value, relationship building, and success. Characteristics of a respectful work place include:

  • Open and honest communication
  • Willingness to work as a team
  • Developing and maintaining confidentiality and trust
  • Clear and concise standards and expectations.
  • Civility and encouragement
  • Respectful interactions
  • Conflict management
  • Valuing diversity
  • Customer satisfaction
  • Others input and ideas are valued and utilized
  • Focus on problem solving vs. blaming
  • Empowerment of employees in decision making
  • Positive and constructive feedback
  • Coaching and mentorship by management in order to develop employee skills
  • Expressed desire for employee success
  • No intimidation, harassment, or bullying

FAQ’s

Q. Is Respect one of Boise State University’s Shared Values?

A. Yes. Respect is one of Boise States Shared Values. Respect is defined as treating people with dignity regardless of who they are and what they believe. A respectful person is attentive, listens well, treats others with consideration and doesn’t resort to intimidation, coercion or violence to persuade.

Q. I have an employee who constantly disrespects other employees and leadership. As a manager do I have grounds to take disciplinary action against this employee even though he is not breaking any laws?

A. Boise State University’s Shared Values are a part of the University’s policies. Even though the employee is not breaking any laws they are breaking University policy and are subject to remedial action. The employee should be approached about their disrespectful behavior. Depending on the situation and severity of the disrespectful behavior, actions can be as simple as a conversation, or severe as dismissal. A performance evaluation may need to be completed to evaluate if the employee’s actions are affecting their performance or the performance of fellow employees. Just because something is not against the law doesn’t mean that it is acceptable in the workplace. Boise State University’s Shared Values and Standards of Conduct are just as applicable as the law for all members of the University Community.    

Q. As a manager how can I apply the Shared Values and Standards of Conduct to what I do at work?

A. The University’s Shared Values and Standards of Conduct are guidelines that can help us create and support a respectful workplace. We are all responsible for taking an active role in creating a respectful workplace. As managers, it is important that you lead by example and model the University’s values and standards. You are responsible for your actions and the actions of your employees. If you hire the right people and train them correctly in the University’s culture of Shared Values and Standards it will be easy to apply those standards and values in the workplace.

Q. I have an employee who consistently results to intimidation, coercion or violence to persuade others. How can I approach this employee about her behavior?

A. Boise State University is a business and has a duty to uphold standards and values in order to support all students and employees. Boise State University strives to produce a culture of respect that is free of discrimination, harassment, threats, and intimidation. Intimidation, coercion and violence are unacceptable behaviors in the workplace and against the University’s values and standards. The supervisor should have a conversation with the employee and depending on the severity of the employees actions, remedial actions may need to be taken. If you are unsure of how to handle the situation contact the director of your department or HR for further assistance. Remedial actions will depend on the severity of the behavior.

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Published
Original: July 30, 2013
Last Update: August 20, 2013