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Learning Competencies


We serve students, other university departments, the general public, and each other. We recognize that the service we provide is broader than the traditional definition of “customer." The customer skills that are needed—attention to the appearance of the facilities and staff, establishing rapport and empathy, identifying needs, responsiveness, etc.— should be integrated within our roles and interactions as Norris employees.


As service is integrated within every aspect of what we do, communication is a key component in not only providing excellent service but also in maintaining departmental and institutional health. All aspects of our communication—verbal and written—should convey respect, trust, confidence, competence, and reliability.

Personal Management

Providing excellent service and completing tasks efficiently within a department begins with a strong work ethic and good habits, particularly with regard to attendance and professional demeanor. Employees’ personal skills and habits are challenged within the workplace. Success is characterized by your ability to achieve a balance with your academics, extracurricular activities, and work responsibilities.

Job Knowledge

To perform optimally, employees must comprehend the function of their position within their department. A full awareness of job duties and policies requires not only the retention of facts, but also the active search, learning, and application of additional information. Being able to provide context to the service we provide can help broaden the service opportunity as well as the satisfaction that results.


For Norris to succeed as a University Center, its staff must share a common understanding of why it exists, what guides its activities, and how each employee contributes to the organization as a whole.    Progress toward this understanding requires learning how to apply the Norris mission within your area to build a community founded on diversity and principles of social justice.


The optimal level of service, that Norris sets out to provide, can only be attained through the collaboration and support provided by each staff member within and across departments. Each of us must focus our efforts toward making the team (departmental and organizational) cohesive, high-performing, and successful.


For a workplace to be successful, employees must be trusted to take initiative and make decisions that impact the department’s service, production, and reputation. That trust depends to a large extent on the responsibility that employees demonstrate in carrying out their duties and assignments. Responsibility includes your dependability with regard to the quality of your work and your acceptance of departmental (and organizational) policies, procedures and goals.