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Business Officer Magazine

More Annual Meeting Concurrent Session Summaries

Bonus coverage of the NACUBO 2013 Annual Meeting in Indianapolis, July 13‒16.

By Preeti Vasishtha, Karla Hignite, and Dorothy Wagener

This bonus coverage of the NACUBO 2013 Annual Meeting in Indianapolis, July 13–16, draws from two popular programming tracks. "What's Your Leadership Style?" is one of the personal development sessions in the Cultivating Leadership track. From the Running the Campus track are "Breach Patrol," about safeguarding personal student information, and "Transformation of the College Store," about bookstore trends. For expanded coverage of the 2013 annual meeting, see the September 2013 issue of Business Officer.

What's Your Leadership Style?

In a highly interactive session, "Tune Up Your Leadership Style," attendees teamed up in twos to better understand their leadership styles.

Session leader Gerald Graham, R.P. Clinton Distinguished Professor of Management, W. Frank Barton School of Business, Wichita State University, Wichita, Kansas, described leadership as the ability of a person to influence the thinking and behavior of others.

To become an effective manager and leader, Graham told participants, "Set your expectations at a level that employees will be able to reach. If people are not successful 75 to 80 percent of the time, they quit trying. Once the employees achieve their goals consistently, then raise your expectations."

You'll get better results in your organization if you hire an aggressive high performer who may require some maintenance, he said, rather than a congenial team player with acceptable performance. However, if you are spending an hour or more managing conflict due to the high performer, then the situation is not working.

Graham also advised attendees to accept that most employees will not change their work behavior. "Coach the strengths and not the weaknesses of your employees," he said.

PREETI VASISHTHA is managing editor of Business Officer.

Breach Patrol

Following a breach in 2011 of the personal information of some of its students, Eastern Michigan University embarked on a campuswide effort to safeguard the information of its students, faculty, and staff. In "Protecting Personally Identifiable Information," EMU Associate Vice President for Finance Andrea Jaeckel detailed steps the university has taken to develop a compliance process.

In its diagnosis phase, the university identified parties with responsibility for the collection, use, retention, disclosure, and/or disposal of personally identifiable and potentially sensitive information including, but not limited to, address, Social Security number, credit card data, financial and medical information, educational records, and credit and tax information.

Departments were asked to inventory all such information that it collects or handles and to assess its level of associated risk. Questions included: Is it necessary to collect this information? How many might be affected by a breach of the information? Would the data lend itself to the identification of individuals? (For instance, a list of names or a list of Social Security numbers does not pose as high of a risk as a list that connects names of individuals with their Social Security numbers.)

Among the key priorities identified were the need to keep personally identifiable information in locked file cabinets and institute a clean-desk policy; implement a timely document retention and destruction schedule; and institute third-party vendor security agreements. EMU has since also developed a privacy statement, with policies regarding educational records, research, health information, financial services, and employment and human resources.

In addition to outlining privacy responsibilities in employment descriptions of key individuals, all employees receive training about how they are expected to handle and protect personally identifiable information. Special training has also been implemented for deans and for specific units, including financial aid, student business services, records, and registration.

While electronic data present a particular challenge—with the need to establish protocols for encryption—good old-fashioned paper bearing sensitive information that gets passed around from department to department can also pose significant risk, Jaeckel reminded participants. The need to weave into the fiber of the institution what privacy is and how to protect the personal information of students, faculty, and staff is critical now more than ever, she added.

KARLA HIGNITE is a contributing editor for Business Officer.

Transformation of the College Store

Seventy-one percent of U.S. college stores are reporting lower sales this year, down an average 3.3 percent from FY12, according to the National Association of College Stores. Course materials are in transition from print to digital at the same time that course formats are expanding to include massive open online courses (MOOCs) and hybrid classes that blend face-to-face learning with an online component. What is the role of the campus bookstore these days?

To answer that question, a session titled "Trends in Campus Bookstores: Implications and Opportunities" brought a wide-ranging discussion that included the perspectives of a campus administrator, a contract management executive, an independent store operator, and legal counsel.

All agreed that the role is changing, but that the campus store still holds a key position as a content provider to support academics. "The bookstore is a very critical hub," said Jade Roth, vice president for books and digital strategy, Barnes & Noble College Booksellers. "The role of the college store has always been to support the campus. In the last five years, you see a business that has already transformed itself."

"Everything is centered around materials that will help students learn better, whichever format is best," said Todd Summer, director of the campus stores division, Aztec Shops Ltd., San Diego State University, California.

Panelists and audience discussed the transition to digital course materials. "There's a diminished perception of value for the traditional textbook as content becomes more digital," said Gary Shapiro, senior vice president of intellectual properties, Follett Higher Education Group. "The economics for selling digital are better, since you don't have to worry about how many to order—there's no shipping and no shrinkage."

But some things haven't changed. "One group of products we continually sell in the industry: notebooks and pencils," said George Masforroll, associate vice president, auxiliary services, Broward College, Florida. "If you look at how students take notes in the classrooms, it's still primarily by hand in notebooks."

DOROTHY WAGENER is editor in chief of Business Officer.

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