The International Ombudsman Association (IOA – uses the Swedish term “ombudsman” that includes all genders) supports the certification of organizational ombuds through its division – The Board of Certification for Certified Organizational Ombudsman Practitioners – CO-OP®. The requirements for certification include completion of a written exam that tests knowledge of conflict management and effective communication skills along with IOA Code of Ethics and Standards of Practice among other topics. There is also an education requirement and work experience including office practices that follow IOA Ethics and Standards.
With this background, we are pleased to announce that Roy Baroff, the NC State Faculty & Staff Ombuds obtained Certification on June 8, 2017. Roy is now a Certified Organizational Ombudsman Practitioner – CO-OP®. Roy scored a 499/500 on the exam (pretty good result!), met the educational and work experience requirements, participated in a one-on-one interview with a member of the Board of Certification to discuss ombuds practices, and was then approved by the full Board of Certification.
To maintain the CO-OP® certification, Roy must complete 60 hours of continuing education credits over the next four years. Obtaining certification now and with these future recertification requirements, Roy demonstrates his commitment to the field and best practices in his service as the NC State Faculty & Staff Ombuds.
Do you have an issue, concern, or conflict on your mind and you’re not sure where to turn? The NC State Faculty & Staff Ombuds is confidential, independent, informal and impartial. Get a head start this summer on resolving your situation – don’t wait! For all NC State Faculty and Staff, find out what Roy can do for you – call 919-935-0922.
I recently saw an Ansel Adams exhibit at the North Carolina Museum of Art and along with iconic shots of the west, I was captivated by a 1932 photo of the Golden Gate before there was a bridge (the bridge opened in 1937). Adams lived in San Francisco, in the Baker Beach area, and apparently spent a good bit of time in and around the bay taking pictures and exploring the Marin hills. Here’s a print of the photo that is now up in my office.
So, what does a conflict look, feel, and sound like without a bridge? How do we conceptualize and build such a bridge? Or, do we really want or need a bridge? These and other questions speak to me in this photo and, while as the Faculty & Staff ombuds, I certainly don’t have all the answers; I will work with you to figure out if you want or can build or perhaps find a bridge across a conflict.
Maybe the bridge is a referral to existing services or a facilitated conversation or it might just be the time in my office where you share an issue with the knowledge that it stays in the office unless you decide otherwise (with a few exceptions). My experiences to date suggest that spending time reflecting on and discussing an issue or conflict provides clarity to the dispute and often generates some options for next steps. Sometimes you can envision a bridge that does not yet exist. Thus, I invite you to come by, enjoy the print, and we can also talk about some issue of concern.
One of the hallmarks of an ombuds office is confidentiality. In ombuds terms, this means that all communication with the faculty ombuds office is off the record with two limited exceptions – if there is imminent risk of serious harm (to oneself or others) or if required by law ( if information of child or elder abuse or neglect). Otherwise the person contacting the office retains full control over what happens with the information shared.
Confidentiality also extends to not maintaining records with identifiable information and for providing a secure storage location for materials that are confidential and actively in use. For a period of time, I’ve carried such files with me; however, I’ve added secure storage to the faculty ombuds office in the form of a small safe. Check it out!
I hope this clarifies “confidentiality” at the NC State Faculty Ombuds and please contact the office if I can be of assistance.