Posted at 10:40 p.m. Jan. 14, 2014

Campus climate survey reveals some employees 'fearful to speak their mind'

Employees fearful of speaking their mind are a cause for concern, said Laramie County Community College’s president during the Jan. 15 board of trustees meeting, but overall the results of a recently conducted campusmorale survey were positive.

LCCC President Dr. Joe Schaffer voiced concerns regarding the results of the employee campus climate survey, which polled LCCC employees in November, 2013. The climate survey, adapted from previous years’ leading and communicating survey, reported 182 of 256 responders agreed with the statement “I am fearful about speaking my mind at LCCC.”

Schaffer said that historically LCCC has not managed its employees well. “Because we’ve never managed [LCCC employees], that is a significant change for our employees. Now that we’re doing that, there is considerable concern,” Schaffer said.

Peer bullying targeting employees who openly voice their thoughts was another factor in the negative feedback provided by the canvass, Schaffer said.

“I am concerned that [employee] relationships have been formed based on discontentment,” he said.

Trustee Dr. Kevin Kilty said employees had expressed concern to him about being passed over for promotion if they voiced negative opinions about the college. He added that openings for promotion are often scarce; therefore, the fears may not have a solid foundation.

An anonymous evaluation instituted to gauge employee opinions about working at LCCC, the online climate survey asked 347 employees to participate and received responses from 76 percent of those invited. The institutional research manager, Ann Murray, said at the institutional level the canvass produced reliable results; however, in terms of representing the different employee groups on specific questions it didn’t do as well as hoped.

“They were generally positive,” said Murray of the campus climate poll results.

Of the 26 statements presented in the climate survey five statements received negative feedback significantly different from years past:

Due to technical issues, the broadcast was recorded in pieces and in one section only audio was recorded.