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2021 Best Practices Forum

The Office of Organizational Strategy and Change (OSC) is pleased to announce the 2021 Best Practices Forum webinar series. This year, we are excited to offer a variety of sessions that exemplify the ingenuity, creativity, and adaptability of our colleagues, particularly during this period of rapid change.

The series features 60-minute and 30-minute webinars on a variety of topics beginning on May 4  and continuing through June 3. Through this online format, you will have the freedom and flexibility to pick and choose as many sessions as you want to attend depending on your availability and individual interests.

While we look forward to returning to a place-based event to convene and network in person in the future, we are energized about continuing the valued tradition of the Forum. If you have any questions, please contact Aspasia Apostolakis Miller at 847-467-0651 or a-apostolakis@northwestern.edu.

The Forum will open with a session led by Milan Mrksich, Vice President for Research, and conclude with a session featuring Jeri Ward, Vice President and Chief Marketing and Communications Officer.

The following table lists the 13 webinars facilitated by staff across numerous schools and units:

Dates Theme Wednesday Thursday
Week One
(May 4 and 6)
Change & Resilience

Research Resilience: Leadership Keys to Pandemic Response with Milan Mrksich, Vice President for Research

(Note: This session will be on Tuesday May 4, 2021)

Joint Session
Part A (30 minutes): Leading a Virtual Team: A Developmental Approach to Work-Study Productivity

Part B (30 minutes): Shifting Culture to Galvanize Workplace Psychological Safety
Week Two
(May 12-13)
Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion DEI in Action: Putting Values into Practice Building Access Throughout Northwestern’s Digital Footprint
Week Three (May 19-20) Data & Technology Decision Highway, from Data Mining to Insight The Future is Now: A.I. for Higher Ed Admin Units
Week Four
(May 26-27)
Organizational Excellence Best Practices in Recruiting and Onboarding Top Talent

Joint Session
Part A (30 minutes): Collaboration Yields Inspiration: IPR and OGMC

Part B (30 minutes): Leading (Virtual) Collaborations: The U7+ Presidential Summit
Week Five
(June 2-3)
Responding to the Times Session 1: Pulling Together: The Practicum for Online Teaching

Session 2: Northwestern's Cross-Campus Virtual Commencement Moonshot
Closing Session by Jeri Ward, Vice President and Chief Marketing and Communications Officer

 

View the session information below to learn more about each presentation.

 

  • Tuesday, May 4 (1:00pm – 2:00pm):  Research Resilience: Leadership Keys to Pandemic Response with Milan Mrksich, Vice President for Research
    • Presenters: Ann Adams, Michael B. Blayney, Matt Golosinski, Milan Mrksich, Teri Odom
    • Description: This session takes you behind the scenes to learn how the Office for Research supported Northwestern’s COVID-19 response. Discussion will explore key decisions, partnerships, challenges, successes and lessons learned from ramping down the University’s large, complex research enterprise — and then gradually ramping it back up with new pandemic training and safety guidelines.
    • Register here for this webinar
    • Additional Information: Abstract, Bios, and Learning Outcomes
  • Thursday, May 6 (12:00pm – 1:00pm): Joint Session
    • Register here for this two-part webinar

    • Part A (30 minutes): Leading a Virtual Team: A Developmental Approach to Work-Study Productivity
      • Presenters: Jessica Scott, Fiona Sykes
      • Description: Learn how Medill Student Affairs provides student workers with ownership through self-chosen leadership roles to increase self-sufficiency and student buy-in, therefore limiting the amount of time full time staff members spend supervising and furthering student career development.
      • Additional Information: Abstract, Bios, and Learning Outcomes
    • Part B (30 minutes): Shifting Culture to Galvanize Workplace Psychological Safety
      • Presenters: Julie Cowan, Theo Downs, Beth Irwin
      • Description: Staff are eager to share their thoughts and have demonstrated the need for positive change, but require the right resources and genuine support in order for change to be meaningful. Join us as we learn more about the Psychological Safety, Empowerment, and Autonomy (PSEA) Implementation Team’s initiative, which seeks to ensure that all staff in the Office for Research (OR) feel safe and valued in the workplace.
      • Additional Information: Abstract, Bios, and Learning Outcomes
  • Wednesday, May 12 (12:00pm – 1:00pm): DEI in Action: Putting Values into Practice
    • Presenters: Tameka Brannon, Lacey Gleason, Keith Herzog, Tarneka Manning, Janet Olivo
    • Description: Feinberg administrators from across the school will share the ways in which the values of DEI have been “brought home” and integrated into the unit’s culture, operations and strategy. Panelists will highlight specific areas of their work, and the DEI initiatives that are making the most impact.
    • Register here for this webinar
    • Additional Information: Abstract, Bios, and Learning Outcomes
  • Thursday, May 13 (12:00pm – 1:00pm): Building Access Throughout Northwestern’s Digital Footprint
    • Presenters: Laura Conway, Jane Flis, James Stachowiak
    • Description: This session explores the creation of the Digital Accessibility Liaisons program, providing a major first step towards promoting digital accessibility across the University in an era of cost containment. A liaison from Medill, Jane Flis, will highlight her unit’s digital accessibility work as part of a larger conversation about how units can integrate digital accessibility best practices going forward.
    • Register here for this webinar
    • Additional Information: Abstract, Bios, and Learning Outcomes
  • Wednesday, May 19 (12:00pm – 1:00pm): Decision Highway, from Data Mining to Insight
    • Presenters: Nicholas Angeloni, Joseph Boes
    • Description: Decision Highway, from Data Mining to Insight portrays the journey of leveraging data-mining into decision-driving analysis through building a dashboard approach. Major destinations along this journey include a review of: recommendations on process and approach, tips on integrating data into meaningful, specifics on leveraging data at Northwestern, and the impact increased efficiency and insight has had on operations.
    • Register here for this webinar
    • Additional Information: Abstract, Bios, and Learning Outcomes
  • Thursday, May 20 (12:00pm – 1:00pm): The Future is Now: A.I. for Higher Ed Admin Units
  • Wednesday, May 26 (12:00pm – 1:00pm): Best Practices in Recruiting and Onboarding Top Talent
    • Presenters: Therese Grohman, Stefanie Hicks
    • Description: In this interactive session, we will talk about how to authentically demonstrate the Northwestern mission and values and your individual team culture to candidates in a way that is engaging and welcoming. We will share a toolkit that everyone can adapt to their teams, cultures, and hiring styles to create recruitment and onboarding experiences that are consistent, professional, and welcoming to increase Northwestern’s ability to attract and retain top talent in both an online and an in-person world.
    • Register here for this webinar
    • Additional Information: Abstract, Bios, and Learning Outcomes
  • Thursday, May 27 (12:00pm – 1:00pm): Joint Session
    • Register here for this two-part webinar
    • Part A (30 minutes): Collaboration Yields Inspiration: IPR and OGMC
      • Presenters: Andy Madorsky, Diane Schanzenbach, Martin Wilson
      • Description: Learn the value of collaborative expertise to elevate marketing, communication, and storytelling.
      • Additional Information: Abstract, Bios, and Learning Outcomes
    • Part B (30 minutes): Leading (Virtual) Collaborations: The U7+ Presidential Summit
      • Presenters: Madeline Baxter, Meghan Ozaroski, Kim Rapp
      • Description: The U7+ Alliance of World Universities Presidential Summit, hosted in 2020 by Northwestern, provided the planning team the opportunity to partner across campus and the world to transition this high-profile, exclusive event into a series of virtual engagements that also brought administrator, faculty, and student voices from across the U7+ global network to the table. Presenters will share lessons learned, focusing on strategies and tools for conducting major virtual conferences and best practices for incorporating student voices in events aimed at university leadership.
      • Additional Information: Abstract, Bios, and Learning Outcomes
  • Wednesday, June 2, Session 1 (11:00am – 12:00pm): Pulling Together: The Practicum for Online Teaching
    • Presenters: Jonathan Diehl, Michelle Guittar, Reba-Anna Lee, James Stachowiak
    • Description: The Practicum in the Foundations of Online Teaching, a three-week intensive program designed to enhance learning and teaching in remote contexts, was the result of a multi-unit collaboration including Teaching and Learning Technologies, AccessibleNU, the Searle Center for Advancing Learning and Teaching, School of Professional Studies, and University Libraries. This presentation will detail the processes, outcomes, and lessons learned by the Practicum Planning Team.
    • Register here for this webinar
    • Additional Information: Abstract, Bios, and Learning Outcomes
  • Wednesday, June 2, Session 2 (1:00pm – 2:00pm): Northwestern's Cross-Campus Virtual Commencement Moonshot
    • Presenters: Christa Battaglia, Steve Kwak, Francesca Petty, Lee Roberson, Taniesha Robinson, Kelly Schaefer, Alan Wolff
    • Description: The virtual commencement project team created a project that provided a surprisingly uplifting experience for graduates and their families during an otherwise gloomy time of the COVID-19 pandemic. Participants will learn how dozens of people across Northwestern University worked together on a very short timeframe to do something novel to celebrate our graduates’ accomplishments and will hear about the astounding results of the project.
    • Register here for this webinar
    • Additional Information: Abstract, Bios, and Learning Outcomes
  • Thursday, June 3 (10:00am – 11:00am): Closing Session by Jeri Ward, Vice President and Chief Marketing and Communications Officer