Outstanding Supervisor Award
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About the Award
The Outstanding Supervisor Award honors Michigan State University supervisors who have consistently demonstrated worklife sensitivity and support of the professional/personal needs of the employees in their unit. The award is significant for the following reasons:
By recognizing outstanding supervisors, we are setting an example of “what makes a good supervisor.” This will serve as a model for others to illustrate what it means to be sensitive to worklife and family circumstances. These outstanding supervisor role models make a positive impact on managerial practices across campus!
The managerial style of a supervisor has a direct impact on the quality of the employees’ work and their loyalty to MSU. Any supervisor, at any employment level, from all staff and academic units may be nominated.
There is a strong “business case” for offering support and flexibility to enhance employees’ worklife balance. When sincere consideration is given to an individual’s personal responsibilities outside the job, absenteeism may be reduced and morale and productivity are improved.
How to Nominate your Supervisor
Members of the MSU community are invited to nominate a supervisor/administrator who consistently supports the worklife (professional/personal) needs of their employees/staff through positive leadership and managerial practices. If the following characteristics fit YOUR supervisor, please complete the nomination package. All staff, faculty and students may nominate their supervisors who have been in the position for more than two years. The nomination package must include the nomination form, nomination letter, plus two to four letters of support.
Nominations should include specific examples of how and why the supervisor is outstanding. Past winners’ nomination letters have been genuine with various authentic descriptions of how the supervisor is exceptional. Make sure you clearly explain how your supervisor’s actions specifically impact employees in your work group.
Nominations must be submitted by Friday, June 30th, 2023.
What Makes An Outstanding Supervisor?
Outstanding Supervisors establish, cultivate, and sustain a workplace free from discrimination and harassment based on age, color, gender, gender identity, disability status, height, marital status, national origin, political persuasion, race, religion, sexual orientation, veteran status, and weight under the University’s Anti-Discrimination Policy (ADP)
Outstanding Supervisors promote a workplace environment that is free from relationship violence and sexual misconduct in accordance with the Policy on Relationship Violence and Sexual Misconduct (RVSM)
Outstanding Supervisors represent the values and norms that contribute to a supportive workplace culture at MSU. These individuals go above and beyond their typical supervisory role to enhance the Spartan workplace.
An Outstanding Supervisor...
- Establishes, cultivates, and sustains a diverse, equitable and inclusive workplace
- Understands worklife fit/balance (values employee’s work and personal life)
- Allows flexible schedules or other flexibility in the workplace
- Treats everyone with dignity, respect, and integrity
- Promotes teamwork while supporting individuals’ wellbeing
- Humanizes the work environment and treats employees as people first
- Has a positive leadership style which empowers others
- Is familiar with and refers to the Worklife Office’s services and other campus support programs
- Responds well to stressful circumstances and extreme worklife situations (e.g. COVID-19, caregiving conflicts, change in leadership)
About the Committee
- Chair: Member of the WorkLife Office; perpetual
- Secretary: Any member; annual nomination
- Member from CTU, APA, APSA
- Member from at least one of the following
- Police Officers Association of Michigan (Non-Supervisory) (POAM)
- Spartan Skilled Trades Union (SSTU)
- Local 1585
- Local 274
- Member from at least one of the following
- Academic Specialist
- Faculty (any rank, includes Union of Nontenure-Track Faculty)
- Graduate Employees Union (GEU)
- Emeritus members (past winners) are welcome and encouraged on the committee but not required
- MSU Health Team and Nurses are welcome and encouraged on the committee but not required
Membership can range from a minimum of 5 individuals to a maximum of 10 individuals. Chair and/or Secretary can fulfill a representative membership category. These categories are intended to solicit a diverse group of MSU staff and faculty members on the committee.
Each committee member agrees to fulfill a 1-year commitment. Members can withdraw from the committee at any time and have the option re-commit to service each year during the annual debrief meeting that occurs directly after the awards are distributed. Should membership fall under 5 members, the Chair and committee will recruit members.
- Attend at least 3 of 4 scheduled meetings annually
- Meetings occur on or around Aug (selection), Oct (awards), Nov (debrief), Apr (check-in/launch)
- Attending the selection meeting, or providing a complete review of the application packages with comprehensive feedback, is a requirement of membership
- Attend at least 1 of the award ceremonies in Oct and provide logistical support
- Examples of logistical support: “emcee” overview of the history of the award, bring banners, certificates, cake, read letters of support, audio/visual including taking photos and playing the MSU fight song
- Promote the award to their unit and others at the university when possible
- Serve as a representative of the award, e.g. name listed on WorkLife website and other material
Current Committee Members
Joined in 2018, WorkLife Office (APA)
Joined in 2020, IPF (1585)
Joined in 2021, College of Natural Science (Academic Specialist [non-union, continuing])
Sue gives an overview of the history of this award
Joined in 2001, Residential and Hospitality Services (APA)
Joined in 2008, Dining Services (APSA)
Mike is a past award winner and frequent podcast co-host
Joined in 2008, Dining Services (Retired [Past Winner])
Melissa has co-hosted the podcast
Joined in 2019, MSU Police (POAM)
Marcell handles audio/visual including taking photos and playing the MSU fight song
Joined in 2017, Broad College of Business (Academic Specialist [non-union, non-tenure])
Joined in 2021, Human Resources (CTU)
Past Committee Members
We are so thankful for the selfless service given to the Spartan community by our former committee members!
Nominators will be notified by late September if their supervisor has been selected. Celebrations will occur around National Bosses Day, October 16. Remember, the process is more fun for everyone if you KEEP IT A SECRET!
We asked past recipients why they thought their departments nominated them and why they were selected for the award. Here’s what they had to say…
Listen to special episodes of our Outstanding Supervisor podcast series. Click on any name below to listen to a podcast episode (audio interview) and learn more about how each individual is outstanding!
Very special thanks to Outstanding Supervisor Award Winner and Committee Member Mike Gardner for serving as guest host on many episodes!