In the fall of 2002, a representative group of 16 staff members came together to create a new university-wide staff recognition program. The group of 16 understood that recognition for a job well done is a top motivator of employee performance and that every day Lehigh staff members contribute to the success of their departments and to the accomplishments of Lehigh University.
Recognition—saying “thank you” in public—serves a purpose beyond simple human courtesy. To the employee, recognition signifies that someone notices and someone cares. To the rest of the organization, public appreciation creates role models and communicates the standards for outstanding contribution, reinforcing an environment of gratitude. It says, “These are the behaviors, attitudes, and characteristics that constitute great performance at Lehigh University. And we value that strong performance.”
The outcome from the 16 staff members’ assembly was the creation of the Tradition of Excellence Award, which was unveiled in January 2003. Since its inception, 166 individual and 43 team awards have been distributed to a total of 360 staff members. Recipients may be nominated by staff, faculty, students, parents, alumni, visitors or vendors.
The 2008-2009 Tradition of Excellence committee overseeing the nominating process is prepared to receive nominations for potential inductees. The committee will look for nominees who demonstrate outstanding behaviors or produce exceptional results in one or more of three categories: character, job performance, and teamwork.
Additional information about the Tradition of Excellence and the online nomination form may be accessed at http://www.lehigh.edu/~inhro/TOE.htm
. The deadline for the Fall 2008 awards, to be granted in December, is October 31, 2008. However, nominations will be accepted on a continuing basis, with awards being presented to awardees twice a year, in December and in April.
The committee is comprised of representative staff from across the university. This year’s group includes: Lisa Dubreuil (Admissions); MaryAnn Haller (College of Arts and Sciences); Melissa Hecker Scott (DOS, Residence Life); Stephen Lewis (Library and Technology Services); Mary Jo McNulty (Human Resources); Vivien Steele (English Department); and Mary Wagner (Corporate and Foundation Relations). Yatin Karpe (Office of Technology Transfer) chairs the committee.
Tradition of Excellence recipients receive a specially designed award packet containing a certificate signed by Lehigh President Alice P. Gast, a Tradition of Excellence medallion; a check in the amount of $150 net; and a congratulatory letter from their stem vice president.
Information about award recipients is provided in the publication In The Spotlight
and award recipients’ names are printed in the annual Staff Appreciation Dinner program. Each awardee is also invited to the annual academic year-end celebratory breakfast hosted by university leaders.