Heads of Departments Workshop
On Monday 5th March, 2018, Heads of Departments at Strathmore University attended a meeting on Strategy and Performance Management. The Pro-Chancellor Rev. Fr. Silvano Ochuodho, in his address to HODs challenged them to fulfil the mission and vision of the University as a drive for strategy and institutional culture.
The Pro-Chancellor outlined critical success factors for any institution to run efficiently. In the first place, he was categorical that in as much as college students are of age upon joining university, the irreplaceable role of parents and their cooperation was key to the success of the University’s mission.
The Pro-Chancellor was emphatic on the need to pay attention to the needs of each other and a readiness to serve even outside one’s line of duty. Where there was a friendly attitude, he argued, would provide an environment for staff to work together and to work well.
He made clear pointers on need for staff to relate with each other affably, to live charity and show a clear willingness to be empathetic towards one another. He challenged the departmental leaders to cultivate warm cordial relationships with their teams and particularly to acknowledge the efforts of those reporting to them. He observed that refinement while working such as acknowledging receipt of email messages, giving a listening ear to those with ideas, diligence in resolving issues and correcting when things are not been done properly would go a long in growing talent in Strathmore.
On matters unity, the Pro-Chancellor articulated that compromise to accommodate those of divergent views from others would go a long way in cultivating respect even though tensions were likely to occur from time to time as is common to human nature. He quoted the words of the Chancellor Monsignor Fernando Ocariz that, “those who reach heaven are not those who are right, but those who live charity.” He urged the leaders to show charity by how they live unity with those who govern the institution.
Discussing the theme of the year, the Vice Chancellor, Prof. John Odhiambo discussed the importance of collaboration and togetherness in an effort to provide solutions to problems across the institution. He urged members to recognise and appreciate each other’s strengths and weaknesses. Through collaboration, the VC explained, this would be an opportunity to amplify the collective strengths of the team and make up for weak aspects.
In stating some practical examples of areas of collaboration, the VC urged the academic staff to consider areas of research such as sustainability, energy, data science, family matters among others that were already established in some schools. This, he stressed, would not only enhance synergy but would also enable the University be known holistically and not as a segmented units.
The Vice Chancellor concluded his address by challenging the Heads of Departments to be impact-ful through carrying out their responsibilities at all levels and this would undoubtedly reverberate to society at large.