‘We didn’t feel as if we were being taken seriously’’

Director’s nomination causes irritation

The decision was out in the open before the Central Participation Council was being informed. Thereupon the CMR asked the supervisory board to judge the course of events. A reconstruction.

In May, the Central Participation Council (centrale medezeggenschapsraad, CMR) got the confidential request from the Executive Board to accept the offer to make ‘’under high circumstances’’ an exception at the nomination of the new director Operational Services. The request was to deviate from the standard application procedure and to agree with the nomination of Pieter Dieckmann. The college solicited the same request at the Unit Participation Council. The most important argument, as the Board wrote, was that ‘’both the Executive Board and the questioned staff members of the service are positive with regards to the manner in which the current director fulfills the position(….)’’ An additional consideration is that the nomination of Pieter Dieckmann strengthens the continuity of the management board. The unit participation council agreed, but the central participation council did not. They let the board know that the central participation council “wants to avoid every sign of predetermined plans by an accelerated procedure’’. At the same time, it is possible that ‘’there are different candidates within the University that aspire the position of director and are excluded in advance when the application is no longer public’’.

Centeral Participation council-chair Cor Niks emphasizes that ‘’It is important to keep a close eye on the procedure and that we act transparent as well as open.’’

However, after this letter the Council did not hear anything for a while. It appeared that the decision had been made already: ‘’At a certain point one of the central participation council-members overheard that the nominations were done already. Henk Hagoort also confirmed this by phone. We had a conversation with the executive board, but we did not feel as if we were being taken seriously. After we had obtained advice, we informed the Supervisory Board. There was a meditation interview. The central participation council has right of consent with regards to such a decision as deviating from an established procedure: the eventual decision is up to the executive board. However, the deviation needs to be reasoned well. The ‘issues’ were the reciprocal communication and the fact that the central participation council-chair was able to overhear a decision before it was officially notified through a council member. With regards to the last point, the supervisory board-chair judged that ‘’The executive board indeed has the responsibility to prevent that information can be leaked and has the responsibility to clarify how that decision was made public’’. The Supervisory Board stated that the executive board should communicate more clearly about the ‘’course of the process’’ and the ‘’substantiation and weighing of arguments whenever the subject of those arguments is suggested by the Central Participation Council.’’

After this, the central participation council indicated to have no objections against the nomination. (MH)

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