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People Plan Programme: "Creating a safe space where all suggestions are welcome"

Colour photograph portrait of Professor Rob Jackson


Following feedback from colleagues about the need for greater clarity around leadership expectations at the University, we have developed a new leadership framework. The 3Rs framework is built around three overarching principles – Resourceful, Responsible and Respectful – each of which encompass a cluster of behaviours to draw upon in the context of what needs to be achieved and how. Volunteer members of the People Plan Board have led this work along with colleagues in People Development.

The model is currently being piloted with some Schools and Functions and this is the first in a series of articles that show examples of different applications of the framework. We caught up with Prof Rob Jackson, to find out how he’s been using the leadership framework:

“I’m always keen to learn how to improve myself and help others to learn better team-work and management. Having the leadership framework introduced to us provided an opportunity for self-reflection. Having external guidance made it easy to understand and describe certain types of behaviour and opportunities for change and then how to adapt or implement these at a local or personal level.

“In our management team meeting we specifically addressed undergraduate recruitment and using the framework allowed us to be creative in finding new solutions and creating a safe space where all suggestions are welcome. Though we can’t predict the effect of external circumstances we have to plan for them. This sort of thinking ahead can avoid problems, or look for solutions before they become problems, allowing time for decision making and change.

“Generally, the reaction was very positive and using the framework felt like a part of a natural progression towards a discussion-based model of leadership. As a result, we’ll keep the 3Rs at the forefront of our management meetings and will send it to the School management staff.”

Prof Rob Jackson is the head of the School of Biological Sciences.

If you would like to take explore opportunities to apply the 3Rs leadership framework, contact Lynn Moore.


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