Today is Presidents Day, a time when we honor our leaders of this great nation.
While my role as president of a university is thankfully nowhere near as stressful and hectic as their job, I do understand what it means to lead.
It is a great responsibility no matter the size of the group you lead because the fates, dreams and hopes of those people may rest with you.
As President John Quincy Adams once said: “If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader.”
This quote helps me remember the importance of leading an educational institution. Our goal here at CSU is to change lives through education. The faculty, staff and I want to help our students seize their dreams by learning and growing.
However, it is also my job to do the same for CSU employees as they, too, have goals to learn more and do more. As part of the caring culture of CSU, we offer ways to help our employees grow and develop their potential.
For example, we provide a leadership academy to help those wishing to move into supervisory positions get proper training. We offer courses in various areas such as procedures, conflict management, motivation and more. These classes allow employees the opportunity to learn from other leaders here and create their own style of leadership and build relationships. As one staff member put it: “It gave me personal relationships with contacts in different departments so I would feel more comfortable picking up the phone and asking questions.”
We also reach out to all faculty and staff by providing monthly training sessions, online and in-person, on various topics important to the organizational health of the company and themselves. This also helps us stay united in our goals, get to know others from different departments and share the spirit that is CSU.
To further assist employees, one thing we have done at CSU is define core behavioral traits. Without these traits, a person will not succeed at CSU and they will not fit within our culture. These traits are as follows:
- Family culture that provides a stable and enjoyable work environment of caring and respect with open and clear communications.
- Leadership style that is modest, humble, operationally oriented and hands on. No job is beneath us and we work as a close team to solve issues.
- Focus on providing Exceptional Service to our students that is characterized by sincerity, compassion, empathy, relationships, caring and respect.
- We embrace change, work hard and relentlessly strive to continuously improve.
- We are very professional, first-class, and place a high value on quality, accreditation, and doing what is right.
By working with my leadership team to embody these traits and live them every day, this organization can function at its best and provide the service and programs you, our students, deserve.
Happy Presidents Day and I will see you next month!
CSU President Robert Mayes