Personal Effectiveness

This learning series is designed to help you develop skills, habits, and mindsets to be more effective at work, regardless of what work you do at UVic. The series is highly customizable with three electives that can be selected based on the context of your work environment and your development goals. Courses support employees in developing skills to effectively prioritize, plan, and set goals about important and meaningful work, and to conduct work with others in thoughtful and creative ways. Learning outcomes support several of UVic’s competencies and Strategic Plan priorities.

Enrol in the Series

Download the Employee Learning Program Series Overview


Personal Effectiveness Series Snapshot (4 core courses):

Write Meaningful Goals: Create purposeful goals to clarify what you want to achieve in life.

Plan & Prioritize Work: Implement strategies and tools to be more personally effective.

Make Meetings Matter: Plan and conduct effective meetings.

Creative & Critical Thinking: Achieve more innovative solutions by applying creative strategies and critical thinking skills.

Three Electives: Select three elective courses (3.5 hours of learning each) from the list or submit an alternative for consideration.

Learning Themes

  • Creating structures and frameworks that organize workflow
  • Building awareness of and paying attention to your thinking processes
  • Organizing thinking and planning in advance for successful problem solving
  • Selecting and applying appropriate tools for various stages of work
  • Using personal strengths to achieve desired objectives

Intended Audience

All UVic employees are welcome to participate in this learning series. Those with personal and professional development goals pertaining to service excellence, inclusivity, or connecting their work to UVic’s strategic vision may have a particular interest.

Detailed Course Descriptions

Write Effective Goals: Create purposeful goals to clarify what you want to achieve in life.

Goal setting allows us to plan for and take meaningful steps toward success, for ourselves, our units, and our organization as a whole. If you could use a refresher, or need inspiration about how to set effective goals, this half-day workshop will give you the knowledge and allow you to practice creating goals to achieve success.

In this workshop, you will learn about different types of goals, see examples of well-written goals, and practice writing goals that can be measured. You will make connections between goal writing and the university's performance development process and improve your ability to create goals in conjunction with the university’s strategic framework priorities. We will spend time coaching each other drafting effective work goals using a goal-setting formula and you will leave the workshop with actionable goals to which you can be accountable.

Learning Objectives

  • Write meaningful goals that are connected to your work and career
  • Create goals that link to changing personal, job and UVic priorities
  • Identify different types of goals and tools to write goal statements
  • Craft your own goal statements using the elements of well-written and measurable goals

Plan & Prioritize Work: Implement strategies and tools to be more personally effective.

Wouldn't it be great if, at the end of each day, you know you've accomplished your most important tasks and taken steps towards what is most valuable in your life? So often we don't plan what we would like to achieve, and so we get caught up in minor tasks or 'busy work' that doesn't move us forward towards our goals.

In this workshop, you'll identify your highest priorities and use strategies to distinguish those priorities from the many other demands on your time. You will learn how to use technology more effectively to focus your time and energy and ensure you move your biggest goals forward.

Personal productivity is more than just time management. We will also explore ways to build and maintain your resilience and increase your energy through personal wellness activities that work for you. You will leave the workshop with strategies and tools to implement to be more personally productive and give you an ongoing sense of accomplishment toward your goals.

Learning Objectives

  • Apply prioritization strategies and planning methods to help you accomplish what’s most important
  • Use Outlook tips to enhance your productivity
  • Explore different ways to build resilience and wellness into your daily routine to deepen your focus and increase your energy

Make Meetings Matter: Plan and conduct effective meetings.

Meetings, meetings, meetings! Some work, some don't. What makes a meeting good and how can you contribute to that experience regardless of your role in the meeting?

In this workshop, you will learn how to plan for and conduct meaningful meetings (both in-person and virtually) using principles, best practices, and practical tools for you to take back to your team. We'll discuss all things meetings from the perspective of the chair, recorder, and participants including: strategy and etiquette, setting meeting intentions and agendas, crafting terms of reference and group agreements, and recording and capturing meeting content.

Learning Objectives

  • Define criteria for meeting success
  • Explore the importance of intention in meeting preparation
  • Describe roles and responsibilities of the chairperson, recorder and participant
  • Craft a terms of reference or meeting agreements
  • Record meeting content

Creative & Critical Thinking: Achieve more innovative solutions by applying creative strategies and critical thinking skills.

What if we told ourselves that any one of us could be creative and innovative, and we knew that statement to be true in any situation? How would it feel to know how to implement even the smallest of strategies to generate innovative solutions to workplace issues?

In this workshop, we'll talk about the mindsets needed to create innovative environments and connect with our own capacity to think critically and creatively. You'll experience and learn about activities that you can undertake to 'think about thinking' and open up new ideas from yourself or colleagues when working on problems at hand. We'll talk about the stages of innovation and ways to get more creative ideas out on the table - before we jump to solutions. You'll leave the workshop with resources to draw from to go from ideas to action on any workplace issue.

Learning Objectives

  • Be confident in your ability to use both creative and critical thinking skills
  • Become more aware of your thinking processes, and be purposeful in your approach
  • Use techniques and tools to be more effective in a variety of everyday situations

Personal Effectiveness Series Electives

Choose three electives (3.5 hours of learning each) from the following list or submit an alternative for consideration.

  • Business Process Mapping
  • Project Management
  • Interpersonal Communication
  • Write for the Workplace
  • Speak to Engage Others
  • Thrive in Your Team
  • Building Personal Resilience

UVic Technical Application Training: most courses offered through University Systems, LTSI, and other offices that equip you in various UVic systems (Zoom, Brightspace, Microsoft Teams, FAST Finance, Fast HR, Cascade, Chrome River, etc.). Combine these workshops up to a total of 3.5 hours of training.