Diversity Planning Starts with Listening

Business and Finance is participating in the university’s process to develop a five-year strategic plan to leverage and increase diversity, ensure equity and promote inclusion across all B&F units. The plan will be incorporated in the university-wide plan to be implemented in September 2016 under the President’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion initiative.

Staff Engagement

Beginning at the end of last year, the perspectives of staff at every level and from every unit of B&F have been sought out to better inform the planning team about our strengths as an organization and what we need to improve on. Each unit has undertaken its own listening, learning and planning process coordinated by unit planning leads, including focus groups, surveys, team discussions and even a “post-it-palooza” hosted by ITS.

B&F staff have also engaged in other activities, including the president’s summit in November, an electronic survey distributed across all of B&F, the online community at beheard.umich.edu, and a recent series of staff town hall meetings. ¬†All of these activities have generated valuable input that will help inform the actions moving forward.

Common Themes

The feedback from conversations with B&F staff members falls into some common themes. Some of those broad themes include:

  • Education and skills related to diversity, equity and inclusion topics
  • Recruitment strategies and hiring procedures
  • Resources and skill development for managers
  • Career development and opportunities for advancement
  • Recognizing and celebrating our differences

Next Steps

Planning leads representing B&F units are currently working on the first draft of a five-year plan based on staff input during the planning process.

Along with every other unit, school and college, B&F will submit its draft strategic plan to university leadership for review in March and April. The individual plans will be refined and integrated over the spring and summer, with a final university-wide plan announced and implemented this fall.

Every voice counts! To get involved in the planning process, contact your unit planning lead, visitbeheard.umich.edu, or email BFDiversityWorkingGroup@umich.edu. You can also find out more atbf.umich.edu/diversity or diversity.umich.edu.