Alberta Newspaper Group

Biz City Of Yuma

IN THE FALL of 2020, the Yuma City Council began a strategic planning process, resulting in the adoption of a five-year strategic plan, which included a vision statement, strategic outcomes and priority initiatives. The new strategic plan provided City leadership with the opportunity to revisit and refresh the organization’s mission and core values. There is no doubt that the COVID-19 pandemic has had a direct impact on the workplace and workforce. During the pandemic City staff was nimble and responsive while learning to adapt to an ever-changing work environment filled with uncertainties, stress, and change. There is no doubt this took a toll on City employees. With the adoption of the new strategic plan and staff navigating the post-pandemic workplace, the timing was perfect for the City to reflect and talk about our organizational culture, purpose, and expectations. Generally, we talk about an organization’s vision, mission and values together. The vision and mission state where the organization is going (vision) and what it will do to get there (mission). An organization’s values define what the organization believes in and sets clear expectations for staff. Over an 18-month period, City leadership engaged staff members in dozens of formal and informal meetings, focus groups, and conversations. Staff participated in interactive real-time polling in an effort to gather input into the development of an organizational mission statement and in identifying our core values. The result of the employee feedback and input is the Yuma Way, which reflects who we are as an organization and what we value. It sets the tone for a positive work environment and ensures a common purpose, and identifies our core values. The Yuma Way serves as our guiding principles and provides employees with clear purpose and direction. It is intended to guide our thinking, actions, and behaviors – which directly affects the organizational culture. A strong organization culture motivates everyone to do their best work, and assists with employee retention and recruitment. The Yuma Way (Mission) We are a strong team dedicated to serving our community, building relationships and creating opportunities. We Value (our Core Values) • Professionalism – Be our best. Set the standard. • Accountability – Be responsible. Own our actions. • Integrity – Be honest. Do the right thing. • Responsiveness – Be deliberate. Follow through with intent. Once established, it was important to thoughtfully con sider how to introduce the Yuma Way both internally – to our employees – and externally to those we serve. Staff went to work developing a robust communication plan. Over the past several months, the City has been introducing the Yuma Way internally through branding, emails, images, and other collateral items. The plan included the development of a series of Yuma Way posters and videos. The posters prominently feature employees demonstrating one of the core values and are on display in every City facility. The video series features team members sharing what the Yuma Way means to them. The Yuma Way defines what we, as an organization believe and how employees are expected to act – with, each other and those we serve. As a community member, you can expect City employees to be professional (always doing their best), accountable (responsible for their actions), demonstrate integrity (to be honest), and to be responsive (follow through). “The Yuma Way reflects who we are, what we do, and how we can best serve the residents of Yuma,” explained Jay Simonton, Acting City Administrator. “I’m proud of the work staff has done in developing our mission and core values. It was a collaborative process, and every employee had the opportunity to participate, and have his or her voice heard. We’re excited to share the Yuma Way with the community.” Over the next few weeks, the Yuma Way will be introduced to the community through a series of posts, digital images, and videos shared on the City’s social media platforms and website. Learn more at www.YumaAz.Gov/theYumaWay ✶ 23